August 24, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Friday, August 23, 2019 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond; hey, we're all connected). We have posted summaries and links to 60,000 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
Rangeley Outdoor Film Festival, Aug 30
Event - Posted - Friday, August 23, 2019 

The Rangeley Trail Town Festival features a variety of short films about the outdoors. At RFA Lakeside Theater, Rangeley, August 30, 7 pm, $6 for adults, $3 for Appalachian Trail hikers and children under 12.
LightHawk Paper Plane Contest
Announcement - Thursday, August 22, 2019 

Enter your best paper airplane design for a chance to have it mailed to thousands in LightHawk's 2019 Holiday Letter. Deadline: October 18, 2019.
BTLT Seeks Community Input on Future Conservation
Announcement - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust is seeking community input on its current and future conservation work in Brunswick, Topsham, and Bowdoin. A community survey is available online until September 2.
Butler to speak on conservation, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

Conservationist Gil Butler will discuss his efforts to establish outdoor education programs and conservation projects in Maine and throughout North and South America. At College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor, August 27, 9 am, free, parking on campus is by permit only.
Solo Paddle of Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

Laurie Apgar Chandler will read from and discuss her book “Upwards,” which tells her story as the first woman to solo paddle New England’s 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail. At Bailey Library, Winthrop, August 27, 6:30 pm.
Keeping Acadia Healthy With New Science, Aug 26
Event - Posted - Monday, August 19, 2019 

Abraham Miller-Rushing and Rebecca Cole-Will will discuss how Acadia National Park is facing a triple environmental challenge: global warming, acid rain, and increased visitation. At Bar Harbor, August 26, 5 pm.
Maine’s Seaweed Scene, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Monday, August 19, 2019 

Susan Hand Shetterly and Robin Hadlock Seeley will discuss the importance of protected wild habitats and the critical role of seaweed in the Gulf of Maine. At Moore Community Center, Ellsworth, September 26, 7 pm. Hosted by Downeast Audubon.
Bee apocalypse
Action Alert - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

U.S. agriculture today is 48 times more toxic to honeybees than it was 25 years ago—almost entirely because of neonicotinoid pesticides. It's part of an "insect apocalypse." But instead of taking action, the Trump administration is shredding protections for bees. Will you stand with me in the fight to save the bees? ~ Mayor Ethan Strimling, Portland, Maine
Maine Farmland Trust Gallery 20th Anniversary Retrospective Exhibit, thru Oct 11
Announcement - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

To celebrate Maine Farmland Trust’s 20th anniversary, a curated retrospective featuring a selection of works that have been exhibited at the MFT Gallery over the past 10 years is on view through October 11.
National Parks Free Entrance, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

All National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone to celebrate the National Park Service's 103rd birthday on August 25.
Brechlin reading, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

Earl Brechlin, a Registered Maine Guide, will read from his book, "Return to Moose River: In Search of the Spirit of the Great North Woods," essays describing white-water canoeing, snowmobiling, and backpacking adventures in many parts of Maine. At Albert Church Brown Memorial Library, China, August 25, 2 pm.
Kennebec Land Trust annual meeting, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

At Camp Androscoggin, Wayne, August 25. The trust has conserved more than 6,300 acres and constructed 44 miles of trails on KLT protected lands.
Maine Herpetological Society Reptile Expo, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 17, 2019 

50+ vendors, 1,000+ reptiles, plus Mr. Drew and His Animals Too. At Ramada Inn, Lewiston, August 25, 10 am - 4 pm, $7, kids under 12 free.
Families in the Outdoors, Aug 24
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 17, 2019 

Learn about all kinds of Maine bugs – the good, the bad and the very strange looking. At Law Farm, Dover-Foxcroft, August 24, 9 am - noon.
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News Items
Column: Great horned owl likely the culprit in southern Maine attack
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

Surely you read in the BDN that “an aggressive dive-bombing owl” struck a cross-country skier in the head last week, causing minor injury. Skiers were warned to avoid owl-nesting territory, as if it were possible to know exactly where that is. The article was supplemented with a photo of a barred owl. Wait, what? I was going to let that pass, but then I saw the story in a Portland newspaper, and it was also accompanied by a photo of a barred owl. There were no photos of the actual assailant. I’ll make a case for great horned. ~ Bob Duchesne
Bill Adams, one of Maine's environmental pioneers, dies at 89
Sun Journal - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

William R. “Bill” Adams Jr., a Lewiston native, died Tuesday. Adams helped lay the groundwork for the Clean Air and Clean Water acts sponsored by U.S. Sen. Edmund Muskie of Maine, and then played a key role in overseeing the implementation of the tough new federal standards that have, over time, transformed the Pine Tree State to a degree that most young Mainers cannot even imagine.
2017 Among Warmest Years On Record
National Public Radio - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

This past year, 2017, was among the warmest years on record, according to new data released by NASA and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration. The planet's global surface temperature last year was the second highest since 1880, NASA says. NOAA calls it the third warmest year on record, because of slight variations in the ways that they analyze temperatures. Both put 2017 behind 2016's record temperatures. And "both analyses show that the five warmest years on record have all taken place since 2010," NASA said in a press release.
Analysis: Would A Government Shutdown Usher In A New Vision For The National Park Service?
National Parks Traveler - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

What would the National Park System be without a National Park Service? It may not be such a far-fetched idea under the Trump administration, and you might just see a trial run this weekend. Traveler has learned that in the event of a government shutdown Friday, the National Park System will remain open. Non-essential Park Service personnel will not report to work, but concessions will continue to operate, and visitors will be free to enter. This type of "soft closure" would give Republicans in Congress cover in the event of a shutdown.
CMP says October windstorm cost it $69 million, and customers will help pay the cost
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

The October windstorm that knocked out power to an unprecedented number of Mainers could cost the typical Central Maine Power customer a total of about $16. Of the $69 million total, about $32 million is tied up in damage to utility poles, transformers and other equipment. The rest of the cost reflects what CMP spent on labor and equipment to get the lights back on. That works out to $27 million after subtracting what the company would have paid its own workers, anyway.
Opinion: Offshore drilling catastrophic for Maine economy
Biddeford-Saco-OOB Courier - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

The Trump administration has announced plans to expand future oil and gas leasing in the Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic oceans, as well as the eastern Gulf of Mexico. We could start seeing oil drilling platforms off Maine’s coast in the near future. This would be catastrophic to our state on a number of levels. As the senator who represents the coastal communities of Old Orchard Beach and Saco, I don’t want our pristine environmental and economic resource threatened because of incompetence and short-sightedness from the White House. Imagine the impact to our lobstering and fishing industry and to tourism, if there was a major oil spill off Maine’s coast. ~ Sen. Justin Chenette
Maine enviros roll out 2018 legislative priorities
Maine Environmental News - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

On Thursday, the Maine Environmental Priorities Coalition announced it’s list of top priority legislative bills for 2018, including:
• Support LD 178 and 1510, Protect clean water and create jobs through water quality infrastructure investments
• Support LD 1686, Protect Maine families and businesses from unnecessary electric bill increases and fees
• Support LD 1534, Save tax dollars, address hunger, and reduce food waster in Maine
• Reject LD 1699, Don’t weaken Maine’s renewable energy policy
• Support LD 1667, Support Maine fishing industries and stop blocking sea-run fish from Sheepscot
• Reject taxes on fuel-efficient cars and trucks; Protect clean transportation choices for Maine
Blog: Hiking in Maine: A Roundup of Great Adventures from 2017 (Part 3)
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

In the third part of the this series looking back at Carey’s hiking columns from 2017, get a look at the 1977 Baxter State Park forest fire that burned thousands of acres, get the lowdown on hiking several of the beautiful mountain trails in the Rangeley Lakes region, celebrate the completion of the Appalachian Trail some 80 years ago, check out AMCs new Medawisla Lodge in the heart of the 100-Mile Wilderness, hike into Chimney Pond on the north side of Katahdin for a overnight in the bunkhouse there, travel to Aroostook County for a handful of outstanding hikes, and see what all the hubbub was about surrounding the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s big gathering in Maine. ~ Carey Kish
Gulf of Maine sea turtle could come off ‘endangered’ list
Associated Press - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

Federal ocean managers say it might be time to move the East Coast population of the world’s largest turtle from the United States’ list of endangered animals. A fishing group is asking that the Northwest Atlantic Ocean’s leatherback sea turtles be listed as “threatened” but not endangered under the Endangered Species Act. The giant reptiles, which can weigh 2,000 pounds, would remain protected under federal law, but their status would be changed to reflect some improvement in the overall health of their population.
Federal official assails national park board members who quit in protest
Associated Press - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

Nine members of the 12-member National Park System Advisory Board, including chairman Tony Knowles, a former Alaska governor, resigned Monday in a letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, saying their requests to meet were ignored. A 10th stepped down Wednesday. Todd Willens, associate deputy secretary of the U.S. Interior Department, said, “We welcome their resignations."
National Park Service Seeks Input on Winter Use at Katahdin W&W National Monument
Free Press - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

The National Park Service is holding a public planning meeting in East Millinocket on Wednesday, January 24, to get input on preferences for winter recreation use in the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. Those who cannot attend can send public comments in writing. The meeting is one of many being held to discuss recreational opportunities and concerns as the National Park Service moves ahead in a three-year planning phase for the new 87,500-acre national monument located east of Baxter State Park.
Letter: Don’t blame climate for spread of ticks
Kennebec Journal - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

The article on the spread of ticks and tick-borne disease in the Jan. 7 edition of your paper focused on climate change (”Maine researchers explore link between climate change and Lyme disease”). I was born in New Jersey, and have hunted in Virginia and Maryland, all of which were a lot warmer than Maine is now. I never saw a tick, or met anyone who had. I read of them only in stories set in the South. A more important human factor in this case is introducing the ticks by the increase in auto transport, which included pets, and the reintroduction of turkeys, which has closely paralled the tick spread. ~ Tom Heyns, Chelsea
Letter: Nonprofits work for Maine
Daily Bulldog (Franklin County) - Thursday, January 18, 2018 

There is discussion in our state about the need to strengthen our economy and create more jobs for Maine’s workforce.There is one sector that tends to be left out of the conversation: Maine’s robust nonprofit sector. As the largest industry in the state, nonprofits employ 1 in every 6 employees statewide. That’s 14 times the number of people employed by the agricultural and fishing industry. Nonprofits exist in every county and reach every single resident in the state. Every day these mission-based organizations build local and statewide connections and strengthen our communities. We partner with other non-profits, along with state and federal agencies to conserve and steward the natural and historical resources of the Rangeley Lakes Region for the benefit of the community and future generations. ~ Amanda Laliberte, Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust
Bath hopes river trail will 'open up waterfront for development'
Forecaster - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Bath plans this year to build part of a half-mile walking trail along the Kennebec River, with completion of the entire project expected in 2019. The $1.8 million endeavor was originally to run from the visitors center at 15 Commercial St. north to the front of the 40-unit Bath RiverWalk condominium complex. But a desire to not have the trail dead-end there, but rather loop back to its starting point, has led city staff to explore its extension to north of the condominiums and back down Front Street to the visitors center,
Portland-Yarmouth trackside trail would be costly but desirable
Forecaster - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Construction of a 10-mile trail alongside unused railroad tracks between Portland and Yarmouth is not only feasible, according to a study, but desirable – particularly because of connections that could be made to other trail systems in the region. But while a trail along the former St. Lawrence & Atlantic Railroad is technically possible, it would also be expensive, with an estimated cost of about $23 million.
Is Maine still hurricane-proof?
Working Waterfront - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Maine is luckier than most Atlantic states when it comes to hurricanes, as they generally run out of power by the time they reach us. The reason hurricanes rarely hit the coast, explained John Jensenius, warming coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, is the low temperature of Maine’s ocean water. But in the Atlantic region, hurricanes are one of the most destructive weather forces and preparations can prove inadequate.
3,000 Mainers hope to nab one of 11 licenses to fish baby eels
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

More than 3,000 Mainers are vying for one of just 11 new baby eel fishing licenses that Maine will issue this year as it reopens the lucrative fishery. The Maine Department of Marine Resources will issue the licenses through a lottery, with the drawing scheduled for sometime in the coming week. It will be the first time the state has allowed any new entrants into the fishery for baby eels, or elvers, since 2013. Winners with a license who catch four pounds, which will be the annual limit for the new licenses, stand to make between $3,000 and $8,000 this spring, depending on the price.
Bill to Lower Liquor Bottle Deposits Considered
Maine Public - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Grocers and others in the food and beverage industry are supporting a proposal to reduce the deposit rate on liquor bottles in Maine from 15 cents to five. This change would match the nickel deposit implemented last year on small containers of liquor commonly called “nips." But environmental groups that support Maine’s 40-year-old bottle deposit law are concerned about the proposal. They worry that the change could reduce redemption rates and hurt non-profit groups that run bottle and can drives to raise money.
Zinke’s ‘crazy policies’ sparked resignations — ex-adviser
E&E/Greenwire - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

In the end, Belinda Faustinos concluded serving on the National Park System Advisory Board and trying to advise Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was a waste of time. "I could not stomach being affiliated with the crazy policies being promoted by Zinke....In no way could I envision with this administration that any investment of time in giving advice would produce anything positive," Faustinos, a board member from Rosemead, Calif., said today. After Faustinos and eight others on the 12-member board resigned en masse Monday night, Chairman Tony Knowles — who also resigned — said one of the biggest disappointments came with Zinke's handling of climate change and his failure to consult with any board members in the last year.
Judge urges jurors to try to reach verdicts in Quebec oil train disaster
Associated Press - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

A judge is urging jurors in a criminal negligence trial stemming from a 2013 derailment that killed 47 people in Quebec near the Maine border to try once more to reach unanimous verdicts after they told him they had come to an impasse. Quebec Superior Court Justice Gaetan Dumas told the eight men and four women Tuesday that failing to reach verdicts for the three defendants will not reflect badly on them, provided they “made an honest effort.”
Editorial: Increased offshore drilling is not the answer to America’s energy future
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

The announcement, from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, is no surprise as the Trump administration is focused on undoing every action taken by former President Barack Obama. And the administration is a big friend of the oil, gas and coal industries. It is rolling back environmental regulations and protections of federal lands in the name of “energy dominance.” The move to allow more offshore drilling is a step backward. Demand for petroleum in the U.S. has stagnated. Car makers are increasingly moving toward electric vehicles. The costs of solar energy are plummeting. This would be a perfect time for the president to champion a cleaner energy future for the country, one that reduces both greenhouse gas emissions and costs. Instead, the Trump administration is playing games with offshore drilling.
CMP's New CEO: If They Want, 'Everyone Should Put Solar Panels On Their Roof'
Maine Public - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Maine's largest electric utility has a new CEO. Doug Herling took over operations of Central Maine Power Company Jan. 1, a day after the utility's long-time leader Sara Burns stepped down. Herling rose through the ranks at CMP, most recently overseeing electric operations for parent-company Avangrid for 2.2 million customers in Maine, New York and Connecticut. Herling says although solar power advocates often criticize the company, he supports build-out of the renewable energy technology in Maine. "I think everyone should put solar panels on their roof if that's what they want to do," he says.
Trader Joe’s to remove controversial chemicals from receipts
Bloomberg News - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

Trader Joe’s, the grocer known for its eclectic products (and Hawaiian-shirt-clad workers), will remove two controversial substances from its register receipts, according to a statement on the company’s website. The chemicals – BPA and BPS – are widespread in register and ATM receipts, according to findings by the Ecology Center, an organization that works with consumers and companies to promote greener products and practices. The U.S. has banned BPA in sippy cups, baby bottles and formula packaging, following similar measures in Canada and the European Union. Some studies have shown the substance disrupts normal hormone functioning, particularly in younger people, while others have traced links to diabetes and obesity.
What it means in Maine if the federal government shuts down on Friday
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

The federal government has been careening toward a shutdown this week, after President Donald Trump scuttled a bipartisan deal to prevent the deportation of U.S. residents brought into the country illegally when they were children, allegedly calling Haiti and certain African countries “shitholes” in the process. Republicans control both houses of Congress, but they still need Democratic votes to pass a temporary spending measure in the Senate. If they can’t reach a settlement, the government will shutdown on Friday for lack of funds. If that happens, the most visible effect in Maine would be the closure of Acadia National Park.
MCHT Helps Restore Fish Passage in the Bagaduce River Watershed
Maine Coast Heritage Trust - Wednesday, January 17, 2018 

The Bagaduce watershed has long been a conservation focus for Maine Coast Heritage Trust. After years of planning, engineers, conservationists, and local representatives gathered last summer to break ground on the first of two nature-like fishways in the watershed. “Without MCHT’s support, none of this would have happened,” says Bailey Bowden, head of the Penobscot Alewife Committee. “People are looking at this and saying, ‘Wow.’ It’s had a big community impact."
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