May 22, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Saturday, May 20, 2017 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news and events. We have posted summaries and links to 50,000 news articles and announcements. We also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to our attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, Editor
BDN Poll: Should the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument get its own signage?
Action Alert - Saturday, May 20, 2017 

Gov. Paul LePage is refusing to put signs along state roads showing the way to Maine’s national monument. Should the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument get its own signage?
Damariscotta Mills Fish Ladder Restoration Festival, May 27-28
Event - Posted - Saturday, May 20, 2017 

The towns of Nobleboro and Newcastle and the Nobleboro Historical Society present the 10th annual Damariscotta Mills Fish Ladder Restoration Festival on Memorial Day weekend, May 27-28. Witness the annual return of the alewives as they ascend the fish ladder to spawn in Damariscotta Lake.
Third Annual Freeport Birding Festival, May 26-28
Event - Posted - Friday, May 19, 2017 

Owl Prowl at Mast landing Sanctuary; birding at Florida Lake, Pettengill Farm, Wolfe’s Neck Farm, and Sayles Field; Casco Bay kayak tour; outing at Winslow Park, etc. May 26-28. Sponsored by L.L. Bean and Maine Audubon.
Saving Seabirds: New Lessons from Puffins, May 25
Event - Posted - Thursday, May 18, 2017 

60% of all seabirds have vanished in the last 60 years. Dr. Stephen Kress, Director of National Audubon’s Seabird Restoration Program, will talk about the restoration of Maine seabirds. At L.L. Bean, Freeport, May 25, 7-9 pm, Maine Audubon members $10, non-members $15.
Little Big Day, May 23
Event - Posted - Tuesday, May 16, 2017 

Join naturalist Doug Hitchcox leads a van trip full birds. From Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, May 23, 7 am 3 pm, Maine Audubon members $50, non-members $60, space is limited.
Bradley Pond Farm , May 23
Event - Posted - Tuesday, May 16, 2017 

An easy walk through a conservation easement surrounding a privately-owned working farm. See migrating warblers, flycatchers, blackbirds, vireos, sparrows, and an occasional raptor. At Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust's Bradley Pond Farm Preserve, Topsham, May 23, 8-10 am.
Help wanted: Contract planner for Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
Announcement - Tuesday, May 16, 2017 

The National Park Foundation, in partnership with the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, is seeking a 3-year community planner to assist with the development of a management plan for this new unit of the National Park Service. Deadline: May 26, 2017, 5 pm.
Spring Bird Walk at Fort Williams Park, May 22
Event - Posted - Monday, May 15, 2017 

Doug Hitchcox leads a spring bird walk, in collaboration with the Fort Williams Park Foundation, to look for migrants and local nesters like warblers and vireos around one of Maine’s most scenic vistas. At Portland Head Light, Cape Elizabeth, May 22, 7-9 am, Maine Audubon members $5, non-members $8.

Sewall Woods Birding & Bird Monitoring Workshop, May 20
Event - Posted - Saturday, May 13, 2017 

Join Kennebec Estuary land Trust and Maine Audubon for a morning practicing bird identification and bird monitoring methods at KELT’s demonstration forest at Sewall Woods Preserve in Bath, May 20, 7-10 am.
Pollinator Parade & Festival, May 20
Event - Posted - Saturday, May 13, 2017 

Family Festival, Pollinator Parade, and the release of "A Monarch Butterfly Story" book by Melissa Kim and Jada Fitch. At Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, May 20, 1 am – 1 pm, free but $5/car to park.
3D Experience: Sportsmen and the Maine Sporting Camp Tradition, May 20
Event - Posted - Saturday, May 13, 2017 

Bernard Fishman, Maine State Museum director, will present never-before-seen 3D images featuring the history of sportsmen and the sporting camp tradition in Maine. Supporting commentary from David Trahan, Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine. At Maine Elk’s Lodge, Augusta, May 20, 5-8:30 pm, $60.
Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument is Under Attack
Action Alert - Friday, May 12, 2017 

The Trump Administration is threatening to overturn Maine’s new National Monument. At the request of Governor Paul LePage, the Department of Interior (DOI) included Katahdin Woods & Waters on a list of 27 monuments to be “reviewed.” DOI Secretary Ryan Zinke could recommend that Maine’s National Monument be changed, or possibly even abolished. Tell the Trump Administration to keep its hands off Katahdin Woods & Waters. ~ Natural Resources Council of Maine
Save Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument
Action Alert - Friday, May 12, 2017 

President Trump is considering eliminating or changing the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument in Maine. Urge the Trump Administration and your U.S. congressional representatives to oppose any effort to eliminate or weaken Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument. Comment deadline is July 10, 2017. ~ RESTORE: The North Woods
Help wanted: Outdoors types
Announcement - Friday, May 12, 2017 

Boston-based Slate Casting will hold auditions in Augusta to cast a television commercial on May 21. The company is looking for Mainers between the ages of 30 and 70 who are active and love outdoor activities, such as hiking, skiing, kayaking, fishing, hunting, and other recreational sports from leisurely to extreme.
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News Items
Trump administration to review national monument designation of Katahdin Woods and Waters
Portland Press Herald - Friday, May 5, 2017 

Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument has landed on a list of 22 national monuments to be reviewed by the Trump administration, casting uncertainty over an economically depressed region that had begun to see investment after a contentious battle over the monument’s designation. It’s a victory for Gov. Paul LePage, who lobbied aggressively to have Katahdin Woods and Waters reviewed and have the designation reversed. On Friday, LePage, who has cultivated ties to President Trump, tweeted a link to the Interior Department announcement, saying: “Yes, it’s on The List.” But critics of the review, including a former opponent of the designation, say the federal action is a setback for the region because it could spook investors.
Feds Open 60-Day Public Comment Period on Maine National Monument
Maine Public - Friday, May 5, 2017 

The U.S. Department of Interior has announced that it will be reviewing Maine’s Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument through a 60-day public comment period starting May 12 to determine whether it was “made without adequate public outreach and coordination with relevant stakeholders.” Katahdin Woods and Waters is one of 27 national monuments it’s reviewing under a presidential order. Maine Gov. Paul LePage, who opposes the monument, tweeted his approval. Lucas St. Clair, the public face of the monument effort, said he’s confident that a fair and transparent review “will demonstrate how important public input was to helping improve the monument idea.”
Maine’s national monument among 27 feds will review
Bangor Daily News - Friday, May 5, 2017 

The U.S. Department of the Interior will include Katahdin Woods and Waters in its review of 27 national monuments, officials announced Friday. The review of Maine’s national monument will determine whether the executive order creating it exceeded federal law. The announcement of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s decision ended confusion that began when President Donald Trump signed an executive order requiring the review on April 26.
Officials: Maine Elver Harvest at Almost 80 Percent of Annual Quota
Maine Public - Friday, May 5, 2017 

After a slow start, Maine fishermen are closing in on their annual harvest quota for baby glass eels more than a month before the season officially ends. Jeff Nichols, a spokesman for the Maine Department of Marine Resources, said the eels — known as elvers — are currently fetching around $1,300 a pound from dealers, who can’t ship the catch to Asian markets fast enough. “We’re probably at almost 80 percent of the total quota, harvesters have landed over 7,500 pounds of the 9,616 of the overall quota and that leaves a couple of thousand pounds left to harvest,” he said.
Marine Mammals
Maine Public - Friday, May 5, 2017 

Lynda Ada Doughty, Executive Director of Marine Mammals of Maine, Kristina Cammen, Assistant Professor of Marine Mammal Science at UMaine, and Sean Todd, Director of Allied Whale at College of the Atlantic discuss the status, research and efforts toward protection of Maine’s marine mammals, from gray seals to porpoises and whales.
A Monumental Cave-In
Other - Friday, May 5, 2017 

American Prospect - Ryan Zinke and Donald Trump are going after the lands set aside to preserve America’s natural heritage—even though they’ve already started to provide economic benefits. Meanwhile, Maine’s perennially cantankerous Governor Paul LePage, a long-time opponent of the monument, has moved in for the kill. But the real push behind the war on the monuments is coming from the Oval Office. When it comes the undoing accomplishments of his predecessors, few presidents have been exhibited the raw vindictiveness of Donald Trump. Teddy Roosevelt is collateral damage.
Doctor gives great info and advice about Lyme Disease
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, May 5, 2017 

I found this column in the latest edition of the Working Waterfront newsletter, published by Island Institute in Rockland. There’s a lot of good and important information about Lyme Disease and other diseases caused by deer ticks in this article, so I want to share it with you.
Editorial: Maine can’t afford a second colossal mistake on offshore wind energy
Bangor Daily News - Friday, May 5, 2017 

Lawmakers, pushed by Gov. Paul LePage, made the horrible decision in 2013 to push a potential $70 million worth of potential investment in clean energy away from Maine. The current Legislature should not make an even worse mistake this year. A bill under consideration by the Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee would require that an offshore wind test project be moved away from Monhegan Island. This would undo years worth of research, jeopardize $40 million in federal funding that is headed to Maine and, once again, prove that the state is not an honest partner in business dealings. Lawmakers must reject LD 1262 or risk reminding the world that Maine is not serious about reducing energy prices and is not a place with consistent rules for doing business.
Opinion: Portland waterfront receives mixed grades on 30-year report card
Portland Press Herald - Friday, May 5, 2017 

On Friday, Portland’s historic 2-to-1 referendum vote to maintain and support our working waterfront will be 30 years old. What kind of report card does our city get for implementing the people’s vote in 1987? Very mixed. As the voters in 1987 knew, “keeping the Port in Portland” is what makes this nearly 400-year-old deep-water seaport city a distinctive, exciting place to live and to visit. Shouldn’t we think this over before we price and crowd it out completely? ~ Karen Sanford founded Keep the Port in Portland
Maine’s Good To-Go, gourmet trail food, reaches 600 stores
Bangor Daily News - Friday, May 5, 2017 

What happens when you put together a professional chef and a seasoned backpacker? Gourmet trail food, naturally. That’s the story of Good To-Go, a company that offers Maine-made dehydrated meals inspired by cuisines from around the world. Based in Kittery, the company was co-founded by Jennifer Scism and David Koorits, a married duo that melded their two life passions — good food and outdoor adventure — to fill a niche they believed had serious potential. In just three years, Good To-Go has infiltrated more than 600 stores, including the major outfitters REI, Eastern Mountain Sports and L.L.Bean, and has raised the standard for trail food.
Letter: Maine in the dark ages on pursuing solar energy
Portland Press Herald - Friday, May 5, 2017 

It’s time to push our legislators to pass L.D. 1373 and get us out of the governor’s “Dark Ages” of sending $5 billion per year out of state to pay for fossil fuels. Even a coal mining museum in Kentucky has gone solar to save money and clean up air pollution. Why aren’t we? ~ Bob Lyman, Freeport
Letter: If national monument reversed, LePage has no control over land
Portland Press Herald - Friday, May 5, 2017 

What in the world makes Gov. Le-Page think that if – and that is a big if – the federal government reverses the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument designation that he will have any control over those 87,000-plus acres? It was not his to begin with. It was not his to determine how it was to be used and by whom. Prior to the designation, the public had access to the acreage only by the good graces of the Quimby family. If we do lose the national monument designation, and all the good things that could come from that, it should revert to private property, not to Le-Page’s control. ~ Sari Varney, Windham
Promising new opportunity shaping up at former Old Town Fuel and Fiber
Mainebiz - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Biofine Technology will partner with the University of Maine's Forest Bioproducts Research Institute on a pilot project at the former Old Town Fuel and Fiber to process and convert biomass into chemical products such as fuels and bioplastics. The Framingham, Mass.-based company — makers of liquid fuel, chemicals and other advanced materials from wood — plans to locate its first major project in an industrial park planned for the former pulp and paper mill in Old Town. Old Town Fuel and Fiber, a wood pulp manufacturer, suspended operations in 2014.
Blog: Should mothers really be worrying about “outdoors shame”?
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Should we be responsible for taking our kids to the woods? Should we feel outdoors shame if we don’t? It’s really, really easy for my kids to play in the woods because we live in the woods. But I have many, many friends who don’t live in the woods. While living in town has many advantages, like the ability to walk to the library and bike-friendly streets and sidewalks, stepping out the back door into the woods isn’t one of them. If my friends want to take their kids to the woods, parents will need to be involved. ~ Cherie Galyean
The Maine Woods National Park Photo-Documentation Project
Spire (UMaine) - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

The Maine Woods National Park Photo-Documentation Project provides education and inspiration, through photographs and words, to encourage society to work cooperatively to make the Maine Woods National Park a reality, for the benefit of life, human and wild, and the protection of our natural world and planet overall.
Readers sound off: Most say national monument should be left alone
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Last week, after President Donald Trump asked for a review of some national monuments that have been designated over the past two decades, I asked BDN readers what they thought about our own Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, which was officially formed last year. Of those respondents, 87 percent shared a variation of the same response: Leave the monument alone.
Earth Optimism Summit in Washington, D.C. features UMaine scientist Bob Steneck
Maine Campus - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

As an environmental enthusiast and hopeful conservation biologist, you can imagine my outrage against the new administration. So, of course, I booked a ticket to Washington, D.C. to join the March for Science. A week before the march, however, I read about the “Earth Optimism Summit.” I knew I had to go to the summit and skip the March for Science. Dr. Bob Steneck from the University of Maine gave a talk on collaborating with locals in Bonaire and restoring the first seaweed reef back into a coral reef. Each talk left you with just a little bit of hope and Dr. Steneck’s was no exception. ~ Haley Sylvester
Maine wildlife officials hold first controlled burn on Swan Island in Richmond to make way for nesting birds
Kennebec Journal - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

The controlled burn — also known as a prescribed burn — will have an effect similar to mowing, but with several advantages. It takes less time and expense than mowing, it reduces a layer of dead matter beneath the grass know as duff and it can put nutrients back into the soil, avoiding the need for additives. Swan Island, also known as the Steve Powell Wildlife Management Area, is a 4-mile long stretch of fields, forests and wetlands at the head of Merrymeeting Bay that’s frequented by everything from moose to bald eagles to bull frogs.
Mill Town and Statewide Community Perspectives on the Value, Management, and Future of Maine Forests
Spire (UMaine) - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

We mailed 3,000 surveys to two Maine populations: (1) a “Statewide” sample; and (2) a “Mill Town” sample that included households within a 10-mile radius of the 10 pulp and paper processing facilities active in 2010. Mill Town and Statewide respondents considered the protection of water, air and soil to be the most important function of Maine forests. Respondents also highly valued the use of forests to support plants and animals.
Customers’ bills at center of fierce debate over incentives for Maine rooftop solar
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Clean-energy advocates and their supporters rallied Thursday around legislation aimed at maintaining and expanding financial incentives for rooftop solar electricity. But while the proposal was praised by dozens of residents, businesses and town officials at a public hearing, it seems destined, in its current form, to face significant resistance in the Legislature, centering on the impact of solar incentives on customer bills.
Legislative Committee Holds Hearing on Solar Incentives
Maine Public - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

An overflow crowd turned out for a legislative committee hearing Thursday as supporters and opponents of incentives for solar power development in Maine squared off. Earlier this year state regulators adopted a new version of solar power rules that would gradually reduce existing incentives for the installation of residential solar arrays in Maine. That will go into effect next year, unless the Legislature acts first. And there are several bills in the mix that could supersede the Public Utilities Commission’s plan.
Hundreds of Solar Supporters Rally in Augusta
Maine Public - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

A couple hundred solar power supporters turned out in Augusta Thursday. They’re backing legislation to overturn a decision by state regulators that reduces payments for solar power sold to the grid. “The bill that so many of you have been working so hard on, as you know, is a win for Maine’s economy. It’s a win for jobs, it’s a win for our environment, it’s a win for rates,” says Rep. Seth Berry, from Bowdoinham who sponsored the bill.
National Park Service is set to conduct prescribed fire burns in Acadia National Park
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

The National Park Service is planning to conduct a number of prescribed fire burns in Acadia National Park through June 1 and again from Sept. 1 to Nov. 30, provided weather and fuel conditions meet the conditions established in the park’s prescribed fire plan. The purpose of the prescribed fire burns is to perpetuate native plant species and open space landscapes by preventing the successional invasion of grasslands by shrubs and trees.
Flooding hitting sections of Golden Road and Millinocket
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Seasonal snowmelt and heavy river flows have flooded basements and backyards on several streets and washed out sections of the Golden Road northwest of Millinocket. The situation along the Golden Road seems severe, said author and retired Maine Department of Conservation ranger Tim Caverly. Caverly and his wife visited the dam, which is about 40 miles northwest of town, on Wednesday. He said the waterflow there was fierce and likely contributed to the flooding of several sections of the Golden Road.
Feds Holding the Line on Monkfishing Rules For Now
Associated Press - Thursday, May 4, 2017 

Federal fishing regulators say the rules for harvesting monkfish are staying the same for now. Monkfish are bottom-dwelling fish that are prized by some chefs. They are fished commercially along the East Coast and are a popular item at fish markets and restaurants. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says there have not been changes to monkfish possession limits for 2017. An arm of the agency is working on rule changes that could potentially increase possession limits, but they have not yet been approved. Fishermen have caught more than 18 million pounds of monkfish in every year since 2011.
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