April 28, 2017  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Rally for Solar, May 4
Event - Posted - Friday, April 28, 2017 

A public hearing on LD 1373, An Act to Protect and Expand Access to Solar Power In Maine, is scheduled for May 4 at 1 pm. Join a rally of solar supporters at the State House at 12 noon before the public hearing. RSVP. Sponsored by Natural Resources Council of Maine.

Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Thursday, April 27, 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
Androscoggin River Watershed Conference, May 4
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 27, 2017 

The 2017 ARWC Conference will be at the Bethel Inn, May 4, 8:15 am - 2:30 pm.
Ocean Frontiers III, May 4
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 27, 2017 

A unique and hopeful ocean film that explores the intersection of national security, marine commerce, and conservation. At Strand Theatre, Rockland, May 4, 6 pm. Sponsored by Island Institute and Green Fire Productions.
Imagine the Maine Woods National Park exhibit, May 1-Jun 30
Announcement - Monday, April 24, 2017 

Hudson Museum at UMaine, Orono, will display a fine art photography exhibit by Thomas Mark Szelog & Lee Ann Szelog created through the Maine Woods National Park Photo-Documentation Project, May 1 – June 30.
Maine Mushrooms, May 1
Event - Posted - Monday, April 24, 2017 

Presenter: Alan Seamans. At USM, Lewiston, May 1, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Stanton Bird Club.
Damaging Maine: The Impacts of Proposed Cuts to the EPA Budget
Publication - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

A detailed analysis by the Natural Resources Council of Maine of the widespread harm that would be caused to Maine’s environment, economy, and people if these cuts are approved by Congress.
A Plastic Ocean, Apr 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 22, 2017 

“A Plastic Ocean” was filmed in 20 locations around the world, documenting the global effects of plastic pollution and workable technology and policy solutions that could be implemented. Screening to be followed by a panel discussion with Upstream Executive Director Matt Prindiville and Abby Barrows, a marine research scientist who focuses on microplastics research. At Strand Theatre, Rockland, April 29, 7 pm,$10 donation suggested.

Lyme disease conference, Apr 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 22, 2017 

At Wiscasset Community Center, April 29, 8 am - 5 pm.
Beginning Farmers Workshops
Event - Posted - Friday, April 21, 2017 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District are co-sponsoring a series of Beginning Farmers Workshops.
• April 23: Free Shearing and Wool Grading, 8 am-5 pm (two sessions), presented by the Midcoast Farmers Alliance. Hosted by Meadowcroft Farm in Washington.
• May 13: Free Natural Farming Practices, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, presented by Aaron Englander at Erickson Fields Preserve in Rockport.
• June 14: Cover Crops and Crop Rotation on June 14;
• July 8: Day-long Pasture Workshop in conjunction with Beef Basics at Aldermere Farm.
• July 26: Pollination Services and Community Partnership.
People’s Climate Movement, Apr 29
Action Alert - Thursday, April 20, 2017 

Join the People’s Climate Movement this April 29th in Washington, D.C. ~ 350.org
Resist: Skills to Fight Back for Maine's Environment, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 20, 2017 

Learn about the current threats and our efforts to protect our public lands, defend the Clean Air Act, and preserve the EPA's budget, and the skills to make a difference. At Bangor High School, April 27, 6 pm.
Boating the Bold Coast, Apr 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, April 19, 2017 

A community dialogue around resources, opportunities, challenges and concerns co-hosted by Maine Island Trail Association and Downeast Conservation Network. At Cobscook Community Learning Center, Trescott, April 26, 3-5 pm.
Resist: Skills to Fight Back for Maine's Environment, Apr 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 18, 2017 

Learn about the current threats and our efforts to protect our public lands, defend the Clean Air Act, and preserve the EPA's budget and the skills to make a difference. At Maple Hill Farm Inn and Conference Center, Hallowell, April 25, 6:30 pm.
Inspired by Nature: Kris Sader, Apr 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 18, 2017 

Kris Sader, a visual artist, will show how nature inspires her creative work. At Topsham Library, April 25, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
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News Items
LePage should see national monument land he criticized, donor’s son says
Associated Press - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

A key proponent of a national monument in Maine is challenging Republican Gov. Paul LePage to spend some time on the land before criticizing it. The governor described the land as “cut over” on Monday and said it’ll take decades for the land to recover. He plans to testify against the monument created by former Democratic President Obama at a House subcommittee hearing next week. Lucas St. Clair, son of entrepreneur Roxanne Quimby, who acquired the land, said Tuesday that the governor should see Katahdin Waters and Waters National Monument before criticizing it. He called the 87,500 acres of donated forestland “an amazingly beautiful place.” Republican President Trump is expected to announce a review of monument designations on Wednesday. But it’s unclear if Trump can undo any monuments.
New Management Could be Coming to East Coast Herring Fishery
Associated Press - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

Atlantic herring is a major industrial fishery on the East Coast, with fishermen frequently bringing more than 200 million pounds of the little fish to shore every year. Herring are used as human food and bait for other fisheries, such as lobsters. The catch of herring off of New England has been inconsistent in recent years, leading to volatility in the lobster bait market. The New England Fishery Management Council is considering nine alternatives about how to manage the fishery. The options would allow for measures such as area closures and restrictions on types of gear. The council could pick its preferred options for public hearing in September.
Deer feeding ban and baiting penalties increased
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

The legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife disposed of more Sunday hunting bills quickly in a recent work session, and then spent a couple of hours working on deer and moose bills. We’ll report on the Sunday hunting and deer bills today.
Trump’s Order Could Jeopardize 21 Years of National Monuments
Huffington Post - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

President Donald Trump is planning to sign an executive order on Wednesday ordering a review of national monument designations going back 21 years, according to multiple media reports. The order directs the U.S. Department of the Interior to look at designations dating back to Jan 1, 1996, which means more than 50 national monuments named by three presidents could be up for review. National monuments are historic sites or geographic areas — like Bears Ears National Monument in Utah or Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument in Maine — that have been granted special federal protections. While only Congress can designate new national parks or wilderness areas, the president can unilaterally declare a national monument under the Antiquities Act of 1906.
U.S. to impose up to 24 percent tariff on Canadian softwood lumber
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

The U.S. Department of Commerce is moving to level tariffs on Canadian lumber imports following decades of complaints from American timber companies who say their northern competitors are unfairly subsidized. The tariffs, which the department said would be as high as 24 percent, could boost prices for American lumber companies, while also raising the overall cost of home building and construction projects. The provincial government of New Brunswick, which leases land to Irving and other companies, said it was preparing to fight for an exclusion from tariffs.
Report: Forestry woes hinder Maine’s economy
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

According to the Maine Development Foundation’s 2017 Measures of Growth report, the state’s recent balance of tree growth and harvesting is headed in the wrong direction. The report raised concern that the state’s not making the most of its forest resources, with still more room for sustainable harvesting.
To Survive Volatile Market, Some Maine Dairy Farmers Think Small
Maine Public - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

Traditional Maine dairies continue to be churned by low milk prices, rising costs and shifting global markets. Some have given up on the industry and sold the farm. But others are taking a new approach that has its own new set of risks and rewards.Heather Donohue, who runs Balfour Farm in Pittsfield with her husband, Doug, used to milk 50 cows at their farm in New York. But when they moved to Maine six years ago to be closer to family, they decided to do things differently. They now milk just a dozen cows, and they sell their products directly to consumers, and to a few wholesale accounts.
Open pits, water contamination banned in new protections added to mining bill
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

The state Legislature’s Joint Environment and Natural Resources Committee spent three hours Monday discussing some of the technical issues of metal mining and mine-related legislation. The committee could vote Wednesday to send those bills to the full Legislature for a final vote. Among the measures is a bill that would enact newly developed regulations to implement a controversial 2012 law that could open the door for the first large-scale metal mining in Maine since 1977. Yet another bill, however, would repeal that 2012 law, reverting back to stringent mining regulations adopted in 1991.
Opinion: We should protect our children’s health, not polluters’ profits
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

As a resident of Maine, the mom of a daughter with asthma and a soil scientist by training, I know that clean air cannot be taken for granted. The tremendous progress we have made cleaning up our state’s air in the last half-century shows that strong environmental safeguards against pollution are effective. They help protect the health of children like my daughter, for whom air pollution can trigger an asthma flare-up. Now, even with decades of science to support the importance of regulations, President Trump wants to decimate funding for federal environmental protections. Trump has proposed slashing the budget of the Environmental Protection Agency – the agency tasked with protecting Americans’ health from pollution. ~ Charity West, Portland
Letter: Solar access offers Mainers power cost independence
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

I am writing in support of “An Act to Protect and Expand Access to Solar Power in Maine.” The extreme financial hurdles that I have faced as a single parent and homeowner could only be overcome by budgeting and hard work. The biggest variable that I cannot plan for in both my current budget and future budget – when I retire and am on a fixed income – is the cost of heat and electricity. I believe that investments in solar to power my electric and heating needs is my best bet at being able to plan for continued independence, without having to rely on others or even programs such as LIHEAP to pay my bills. ~ Debbie Groff, Portland
Trump plans 20% tariff on imports of Canadian softwood lumber
Associated Press - Tuesday, April 25, 2017 

The Trump administration moved Monday to impose a 20 percent tariff on softwood lumber entering the United States from Canada, escalating an intensifying trade dispute between the two countries. U.S. lumber interests have alleged that Canadian firms have an unfair advantage because they cut most of the wood in provincial public forests, where they allegedly pay below market prices. They say the practice adversely affects sawmills and wood products makers that support the employment of 11,000 Mainers.
Column: The nuisance of ‘nips’
Forecaster - Monday, April 24, 2017 

The state Legislature is currently considering LD 56, which calls for crossing out the words “of greater than 50 milliliters” in the statutory sentence, “For wine and spirits containers of greater than 50 milliliters, the refund value may not be less than 15¢” in Maine’s returnable container law. That five-word phrase would place a deposit on nips, giving folks an incentive to pick up the little plastic bottles that litter the parking lots and roadsides. The LePage administration is against it, as they are just about anything that makes good sense. ~ Edgar Allen Beem
Conservation group boosts alewife restoration efforts
Ellsworth American - Monday, April 24, 2017 

If Maine’s once enormous population of alewives is ever to be restored, it will take the continuing efforts of a dedicated group of volunteers. That was the message last week to more than a dozen people concerned with the health of the alewife runs in Surry, Penobscot and Orland from Brett Ciccotelli, a fisheries biologist with the Downeast Salmon Federation. Ciccotelli spoke at a meeting at The Gatherings in Surry aimed at increasing the number of volunteer monitors who will count alewives as they return to Downeast streams in the coming week.
Lots of support for expanding brook trout protection
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, April 24, 2017 

A group of outstanding anglers stepped up to encourage the legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee to expand protection of our native brook trout last Thursday. The public hearing on LD 1136 lasted until 7 pm last Thursday night, and with the exception of the testimony against the bill by DIF&W, all of the testimony encouraged the legislative committee to step up protection of our native brook trout.
Lobstermen tired of conflicts support bill to allow GPS tracking of boats
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 24, 2017 

Lobstermen fed up with cohorts who violate fishing regulations testified in favor of a bill to allow Marine Patrol officers to secretly install tracking devices on fishing vessels suspected of illegal activity without first obtaining a warrant. While a smaller faction opposed the bill, both sides agreed that Maine faces a growing “epidemic” posed by a small number of law-breakers fueling dangerous conflict and threatening the stewardship ethos within the state’s most valuable fishery. They also agreed that the Maine Department of Marine Resources needed more enforcement tools, but lobstermen differed on whether DMR’s commissioner should be allowed to authorize the installation of GPS tracking devices without getting a judge’s approval.
Researchers Urge Caution As Powassan Virus Spreads In Ticks Along Coast
Maine Public - Monday, April 24, 2017 

A serious tick-borne disease — other than Lyme — has established itself in southern Maine. Researchers from the Maine Medical Research Institute in Scarborough have found the Powassan virus in deer ticks across southern areas of the state. “The real scary thing about the Powassan virus is that unlike Lyme disease, which can be transmitted in 24-48 hours, laboratory studies indicate that Powassan virus is probably transmitted in under an hour,” says Maine Center for Disease Control epidemiologist Dr. Siiri Bennett. And many Mainers spend much more time than that outdoors.
LePage says he’ll testify against Katahdin-area national monument as Trump plans review
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 24, 2017 

With President Trump poised to order a review of the past 20 years of national monument designations, Maine Gov. Paul LePage said Monday that he plans to travel to Washington next week to testify against President Obama’s August 2016 designation of the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument in Maine. LePage said he believes Obama violated the federal Antiquities Act with his order designating the monument on 87,000 acres of forestland that was donated to the federal government by Burt’s Bees co-founder Roxanne Quimby. The designation went against the state’s wishes and undermines the forest products industry by limiting timber harvesting, LePage said. He also said the land is “cut over” and won’t have value for 60 years.
Trump, LePage actions threaten Maine’s national monument
Bangor Daily News - Monday, April 24, 2017 

Maine’s national monument will be attacked on two fronts if, as anticipated, President Donald Trump orders a review of monument designations later this week, and Gov. Paul LePage testifies before Congress on May 1 against executive orders that create monuments without state approval. LePage will fly to Washington, D.C. to testify before a House Committee on Natural Resources subcommittee next week in opposition to national monument designations created by presidential order, the governor confirmed Monday during a press conference in Augusta.
Blog: The March for Science and the Fragmentation of the Opposition in the USA
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

The recent march for science that was initially inspired by the U.S. scientific community’s initiative to protest the scientific denials of President Trump’s administration and the potential cuts on scientific funding confirms the failure of the silo-driven opposition movements across the U.S. It would be empowering to see all active social advocacy groups abandon their silos; feminists, advocacy groups, and scientists. Transformational change is not just protesting for the sake of protesting, the impact would be to see the scientific community abandon their comfort zone and reach out to the masses, educating them about the importance of facts in their own decision making process. Science is clearly more powerful when it abandons the classroom and the lab, and when the message reaches millions instead of the few who read the prestigious scientific journals. ~ Stefano Tijerina
Boats might be hitting whales more often
Associated Press - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

A group of marine scientists says collisions of whales and boats off the New England coast may be more common than previously thought. The scientists focused on the humpback whale population in the southern Gulf of Maine. They found that almost 15 percent of the whales, which come to New England to feed every spring, had injuries or scarring consistent with at least one vessel strike.
Opinion: Maine’s heritage is its water; metal mining threatens this valuable resource
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

I cannot imagine our magnificent St. John River losing its beauty to become a contaminated, murky tan color. How awful to have to restrict our fishing and hunting to safeguard our health. So much of our heritage and culture lies within the splendor of the Allagash Wilderness Waterway. The huge risks of open pit mining are not worth the money. We must protect our water to ensure the health of the current generation and every generation to come. ~ Samantha Paradis, registered nurse, Frenchville and Belfast
Restriction in work visas leaves Maine tourism businesses scrambling
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

Every year, the Pentagoet Inn in Castine hires five or six kitchen workers and housekeepers – about a fifth of the staff – from Jamaica with H-2B visas, a tightly regulated seasonal foreign worker program heavily used by Maine’s hospitality sector in the summer tourism season. But because of a new restriction on the program, those workers, some of whom have been coming to work at the Pentagoet for years, haven’t been allowed into the country. If the program isn’t amended quickly, the inn expects to lose thousands of dollars in revenue and even worse, tarnish their guests’ experience.
Birders try to stem the decline of purple martins
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

Purple martins have been in decline in North America for the past half-century, according to the Purple Martin Conservation Association. Maine has seen a 5 percent annual loss in the purple martin population since 1960. “It’s pretty much dropped off a cliff and is basically down to nothing in a lot of New England states,” said Joe Siegrist, president of the association. The species has struggled because of the loss of old-growth forests, where the birds prefer to nest, and with the rise in the numbers of English house sparrows and European starlings, invasive species that compete with martins for (and often win) nesting sites. But now a group of birders at York County Audubon hopes to stem the decline in the purple martin population.
Column: There’s a vested interest in preparing for turkeys
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, April 23, 2017 

The sun has yet to show itself, but its rays have already illuminated the woods enough for turkeys to soon leave their night-time roost. One, not far away, has been serenading the dawn for 20 minutes. The decision is made to start calling, so I reach into my vest searching for the right call. I’ve had this vest long enough that I pretty much know where everything is, but that hasn’t always been the case. Breaking in a new vest is always a challenge, mostly because of the numerous and varied items turkey hunters carry. ~ Bob Humphrey
Defunct Madison mill churns with uncertainties amid hopes of a revival
Morning Sentinel - Saturday, April 22, 2017 

There is a different sort of hum at the former Madison paper mill these days. Gone is the hot, loud blast of a giant paper machine rolling out 195,000 tons of paper annually after the mill closed in May 2016 and put about 215 people out of work. The hum amid the quiet industrial corridors of the mill and its offices now is all business – phone calls and walking tours with prospective buyers taking notes on the mill’s equipment and value. Everything is for sale.
Current  Archive      Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

News Feeds

Natural Resources Council
of Maine

Mixed Signals: Is Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument on “the List”?

MaineBiz news story Two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order directing the U.S. Depa...

4/28/2017 11:12:42 AM

Time for Fighting’s Over. Instead, Let’s Embrace Maine’s National Monument.

By John Holyoke Bangor Daily News column In not-too-unexpected news, it appears that President Donald Trump...

4/28/2017 7:55:57 AM

Plant a Tree on Arbor Day

Happy Arbor Day! Because trees use carbon dioxide, planting trees reduces climate-disrupting pollution. A l...

4/28/2017 4:00:02 AM

NRCM Testimony in Support of LD 1444, “An Act Regarding Large-scale Community Solar Procurement”

Senator David Woodsome, Chair Representative Seth Berry, Chair Joint Standing Committee on Energy, Utilitie...

4/27/2017 12:59:11 PM

Lawmakers Back Bill to Overhaul Maine’s Mining Regulations

The long-sought compromise, which has the support of several major environmental organizations, would ban o...

4/27/2017 5:33:46 AM

Maine Monument’s Future in Doubt after Trump Orders Review

By Nick Sambides Jr., BDN Staff Bangor Daily News news story With a smiling Gov. Paul LePage looking on, Pr...

4/27/2017 5:18:42 AM

LePage Joins Trump for Signing of Order to Review Designations of National Monuments

Trump’s order seeks to review national monument designations but it’s not clear if it will affe...

4/27/2017 5:12:05 AM

Take Action Against Ticks

To protect yourself from ticks, remember that ticks prefer moist habitats near wooded or grassy areas, so t...

4/27/2017 4:00:46 AM

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