September 19, 2018  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond). We have posted summaries and links to over 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
Solar 101, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Join ReVision Energy to learn about the benefits of solar technology. At Scarborough Public Library, September 26, 2018 6:30 pm.
Activist Training for Maine's Environment, Sep 27-Oct 11
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Maine's environmental community is hosting a series of trainings. Learn skills to be a powerful activist and meet fellow environmentalists who want to make a difference in Maine. September 27, Biddeford; October 4: Auburn; October 11, Jefferson; October 18, Falmouth.
Naturalist's Notebook, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Bowdoin biology professor Nat Wheelwright will speak about the book he wrote with Bernd Heinrich, "The Naturalist's Notebook: An Observation Guide and 5-Year Calendar-Journal for Tracking Changes in the Natural World Around You." At Portland Public Library, September 26, 5:30-7:30 pm.
Weasels of Maine, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Shevenell Webb, Wildlife Biologist with IF&W, talks about weasel ecology and natural history. At Augusta Nature Club luncheon, at Capital Area Technical Center, Augusta, September 26, 11:30 am, $7 for lunch.
NRCM online auction, thru Sep
Announcement - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Online auction benefits Natural Resources Council of Maine, through September.
Evening for the Environment, Oct 3
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

A night of camaraderie, celebration, and inspiration for those who care about protecting Maine's environment. Keynote speaker Gina McCarthy, former EPA Administrator. At Brick South on Thompson's Point, Portland, October 3, 5:30-8:00 pm. Organized by Maine Conservation Voters.
Help wanted: Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

The Natural Resources Council of Maine is seeking applications for the position of Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications. The position provides leadership in advancing NRCM and the organization’s advocacy work through the news media. Deadline: October 11, 2018.
MCV Action Fund 2018 Endorsements
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

A list of candidates endorsed by the Maine Conservation Voters Action Fund.
Bringing an ocean perspective to an urban estuary, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Karina Nielsen, director of San Francisco State University’s Estuary and Ocean Science Center, will speak at the UMaine Darling Marine Center, Walpole, September 24, 12:15 pm.
Maine's Beaches are Public Property, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Author and law professor Orlando E. Delogu speaks about public access to Maine’s beaches. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, September 24, 6:30 pm.
Why Natural History Matters, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Tom Fleischner, Executive Director of the Natural History Institute, will describe how the practice of natural history provides the foundation for the natural sciences, conservation, healthy society, and our own well-being. At Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, September 24, 7 pm, Maine Audubon members $12, nonmembers $15.
Save our Shores Walk, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 16, 2018 

Learn how climate change may affect our shores and how CLF is working to ensure a resiliant Maine coast. At Ferry Beach, Saco, September 23, 2:30-5 pm. Sponsored by Conservation Law Foundation.
Help restore cottontail habitat, Sep 22, 28, 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

The Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge will host a volunteer work day to help restore native scrubland habitat, home to many species including the New England cottontail rabbit. Volunteers needed. At Libby Field, Scarborough, Sep 22, 28, 29, 9 am - 2 pm.
Art is for the birds, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

This arts workshop invites community members to collaborate on a sculpture that will provide winter shelter for birds. At Kingdom Woods Conservation Area, Blue Hill, September 22, 10 am-noon.
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News Items
National park maintenance backlog to draw members of Congress to Acadia
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Members of Maine’s congressional delegation are coming to visit the only national park in the state this week to learn more about Acadia’s $59.8 million maintenance backlog. Sen. Angus King and Rep. Bruce Poliquin, along with National Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith are expected to meet with Acadia officials and other local leaders and tour the park Thursday. Representatives from the staffs of Sen. Susan Collins and Rep. Chellie Pingree also are expected to attend.
Editorial: New rules place at-risk species further in peril
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

The Trump administration and Republican lawmakers have put forward a series of proposals that would weaken how science is used to protect threatened and endangered species, and hand more oversight to states with serious conflicts of interest. The Endangered Species Act has saved hundreds of species on the list, many of which would now be gone without the protections the law provides. The law could use more flexibility, as long as it always leaned toward helping threatened species. That’s what you’d do if you really wanted to improve the Endangered Species Act. The bills before Congress, however, would only weaken it.
Opinion: Plan for Scarborough Downs property fits with town’s vision
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

When we had an opportunity to purchase the Scarborough Downs property, we studied the 2006 comprehensive plan and the zoning and made an offer. There was celebration that we are local developers who wish to follow the desires of residents and municipal leaders. We have kept our end of the deal. The master plan we put forth is synced to the town’s current comprehensive plan, which embodies the wishes of residents. Further, our plan delivers a balanced, planned community creating an economic hub in Scarborough – providing amenities and prosperity for decades to come. Our team will invest hundreds of millions into public infrastructure and amenities. The project will diversify Scarborough’s tax base, create thousands of jobs, generate millions in tax revenue and attract new businesses to town – all without burdening the taxpayers. ~ Rocco Risbara III, Crossroads Holdings and Risbara Bros. Construction
Letter: Tax dollars fan flames of climate change
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Hurricanes in Hawaii, raging fires in California forests, sea-level rise in Florida and Maine — these are the signs of climate change coming home to roost. What is often overlooked in discussions about carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases building up is that the Pentagon is the biggest consumer of fossil fuels on the planet. The Pentagon creates over 70 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. And these figures do not even include the Pentagon’s many contractors, including weapons manufacturers. Until we take an honest look at reducing the Pentagon’s giant carbon boot print, our tax dollars will continue to fan the flames of catastrophic climate change. ~ Lisa Savage, Solon
Letter: Carbon tax is best first step
Sun Journal - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Garrett Mason stated, “a carbon tax would raise gas and electricity costs for all consumers and have little environmental impact.” The proposal by the Citizen’s Climate Lobby includes a dividend which would give more money back to the majority of Maine households than their increased expenses. A tax will lower greenhouse gas emissions in a measured way. Alternative energy will become relatively cheaper. The cost of inaction is huge. Farmers are dealing with heatwaves, drought, downpours and increased pests and diseases. Fishermen are witnessing rapidly warming waters and ocean acidification. Loggers see the trees they harvest infested by pests that are increasing their range. An increasingly unstable climate spurs extreme weather events which costs taxpayers and homeowners billions. ~ Roberta Brezinski, Durham
Discovery of immature lobsters in deep Down East waters may be good news for industry
Portland Press Herald - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Researchers feared that declines in the numbers of baby lobsters found in warmer, shallow waters might presage a population bust, but the young may merely be moving to deeper habitat, UMaine professor Richard Wahle says. “Eastern Maine used to be a [lobster] settlement desert,” Wahle said. “Not anymore.” Computer models that address rising ocean temperatures have predicted a 40 to 62 percent decline in Gulf of Maine lobster populations over the next 30 years, but Wahle’s deepwater settlement findings suggest the Bay of Fundy effect may insulate eastern Maine from these predicted declines.
UMPI Gets OK For New Agribusiness Program
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

University of Maine System Trustees have approved a new degree program at the Presque Isle campus, which they say is designed to meet the need for highly qualified agriculture and agribusiness professionals. UMPI President Ray Rice says the program will teach current agricultural practices and support research-based approaches to improving agribusiness operations. Rice says there are already 8 students enrolled in the program.
Beavers block culverts again in Livermore
Sun Journal - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Beavers are blocking culverts on the Strickland Ferry Road in Livermore, according to town officials. Maine Game Warden Harry Weigman will get advice from a biologist on how to keep the rodents from blocking culverts. “I don’t water building up and freezing there all winter long,” he said.
Maine Public interviews Leslie about new ocean conservation database
UMaine Today - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Maine Public interviewed Heather Leslie, director of the UMaine Darling Marine Center in Walpole, about a new ocean conservation database she helped create. Leslie worked with a team of researchers to design the Conservation Planning Database after realizing there was no central location to share information about ocean conservation. The peer-reviewed database, intended to help people all over the world learn about and solve marine issues, is free and open to the public, and is available online.
Belfast police search for whoever shot seagull
WGME-TV13 - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Belfast police are searching for whoever shot a seagull, which led to the bird having to be put down. Officials say the bird, which is a legally protected species, was found with a single lead projectile lodged in it. They say the bird's wing wasn't repairable, and the bird was euthanized.
Digital big-game registration system gives Maine wildlife biologists real-time harvest data
Bangor Daily News - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Up until this fall, the state’s wildlife biologists had to wait for months in order to tell how many moose, deer, bears or turkeys hunters had been harvested. Thanks to a new web-based registration system, those days are over. This new system will quickly allow tagging stations and hunters to register their animal, and also provide our biologists and game wardens with real-time harvest data.
Maine Dam Being Removed To Make Way For Smelt, Trout
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

A Maine conservation group is beginning the process of removing a granite dam in Sullivan as part of project to make a brook more accessible to fish. The Downeast Salmon Federation says the removal of the dam from Smelt Brook is "part of a multi-faceted land conservation and habitat restoration project to bring smelt back to the stream.'' The group says the removal of the dam will connect Smelt Brook back to Smelt Cove at the foot of Frenchman Bay. That will allow fish such as smelt, brook trout and American eel to pass through the area. The removal will also restore salt marsh. The dam was built more than 50 years ago.
Waterville’s $1.5 million RiverWalk at Head of Falls open to the public
Morning Sentinel - Monday, September 17, 2018 

The RiverWalk at Head of Falls was rife with activity Monday morning with people walking dogs, a Colby College professor and his class checking out the Kennebec River and public works employees installing a conduit for electricity to an outdoor amphitheater. The $1.5 million RiverWalk features a lighted, 900-foot boardwalk along the river, a gazebo, a large interactive children’s play area, art installations and landscaping, including trees and flowers. Though the RiverWalk is open to the public, workers are still adding features. A dedication ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. on October 6. Former U.S. Sen. George J. Mitchell, who lived at Head of Falls when he was a small child, will be the principle speaker.
Paper streets pit Cape Elizabeth residents against the town
WGME-TV13 - Monday, September 17, 2018 

After months of debate, Cape Elizabeth town councilors will make a decision on the paper streets that have torn residents apart for years. Five homeowners on the waterfront filed a lawsuit against Cape Elizabeth a year ago, because the town never developed the road only marked on paper. Owners then agreed to pay $500,000 to the town in a settlement proposal, if they gave up the rights to the undeveloped street. Behind those homes is a gravel path that allows deeded residents access to the shoreline, and now some residents feel they won’t have access to public ways. However, residents say the trail near the shoreline is privately owned. Now it’s up to councilors to make a vote on what's works best for homeowners, and the entire town of Cape Elizabeth.
Reconnecting People With Nature
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Bowdoin College biology professor emeritus Nathaniel T. Wheelwright shares his latest project, a series of videos filmed almost entirely in his backyard that are designed to encourage mindfulness and curiosity among viewers. Joining Nat is Patty Jones, Director of the Bowdoin Scientific Station on Kent Island.
Opponents, Supporters Of Canada-Massachusetts Energy Project Speak At Hearings
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

About 200 people turned out Friday night for a pair of hearings held by the Maine Public Utilities Commission — one in Farmington and one in the Forks — on Central Maine Power’s proposed transmission line known as New England Clean Energy Connect. It’s a 145-mile power line that would bring Canadian hydropower through western Maine to Massachusetts. While the majority of those who spoke Friday were opposed to the plan, CMP spokesman John Carroll says there seems to be some consensus on at least one topic: climate change.
Cape Elizabeth considering 'pay-to-park' at Fort Williams
WGME-TV13 - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Cape Elizabeth Town Councilors will discuss a proposal Monday night that would bring cashless parking meters to Fort Williams Park. The proposal would place 10 cashless meters in five parking lots across the park from April through November. The pay-to-park lots would include the parking lots closest to the Portland Headlight, the parking lot next to the Fort Williams Beach, and the Parking Lot behind the Bite into Maine lobster shack. In total, 270 spots would become pay-to-park.
Opinion: Quebec hydro line will ruin Maine’s ‘golden egg’ — our beautiful forest
Bangor Daily News - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Central Maine Power’s proposal to construct a new 53-mile corridor, as part of a larger 145-mile transmission line, through the woods of the Upper Moose River Basin will degrade our treasured natural assets. Yet, CMP and Hydro-Quebec expects us to embrace this project’s extensive visual and environmental impacts, all in the name of delivering Canadian hydro power to Massachusetts? I say enough is enough. What’s next? An adjacent pipeline? An East-West Highway? Yet another expanded power line? The impacts from these possibilities will incrementally destroy the value of the natural golden eggs that nourish our quality of life, valued irreplaceable assets that feed our rural forestry, tourism and small-business economy. ~ Roger Merchant, Glenburn
Changes: Judy Berk to retire from NRCM
Maine Environmental News - Monday, September 17, 2018 

On Monday, Judy Berk, a long-time staffer at the Natural Resources Council of Maine, announced that she will be retiring from NRCM later this year. Burk wrote to colleagues, "I have worked in communications at NRCM for more than 27 years, and it has been so rewarding – a challenge, an adventure, a learning and growing experience, an opportunity to do constructive, substantive work at a great place with a great team pulling together to make the Maine we love, a better place. What more could you ask for?" The deadline for applications is October 11.
Scientists Create New Online Ocean Conservation Tool
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

A new online ocean conservation tool has been launched. It's called the Conservation Planning Database. "So I know it sounds like a bit of a snoozer, but it's actually incredibly exciting," says Heather Leslie, director of the University of Maine Darling Marine Research Center in Walpole. "This is something that a large team of scientists from all over the world have been working on for going on 20 years now." Leslie says the free, peer-reviewed repository of information is meant to assist people from all over the world in learning about and solving ocean issues.
As Herring Fishery Closes, Maine Fishermen Turn To Plentiful 'Pogies' For Bait
Maine Public - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Good news for Maine lobstermen: Just as a scarcity of the herring they use to bait their traps has closed that fishery, state officials are expanding the fishery for another baitfish - menhaden, or pogies that have shown up in large numbers off Maine for the third year in a row. State Marine Resources Coordinator Melissa Smith says with the Gulf of Maine's waters warming, and North Atlantic currents changing, the state may see them return more often. Four southern states where pogies have not been abundant this year are transferring some of their federal quotas for the fish to Maine.
Maine communities torn apart by age-old debate: Business growth or water views?
Other - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Portsmouth Herald (NH) - It’s a special place for the 60-some residences, split between Kittery and Eliot, affixed to its shoreline. A proposal by a local shellfish company to expand its aquaculture operations to the length of three football fields within the body of water has posed a considerable question some abutters are hastily trying to answer: Who exactly owns Spinney Creek, both literally and figuratively?
Downeaster readies for expanded Brunswick-Boston service
Portland Press Herald - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Rail service between Boston and Brunswick is expected to expand as soon as November, provided a critical rail project is completed on time. The Downeaster expects to make five round trips per day on its entire line as soon as it finishes the $9.4 million construction of a secondary passing rail line in Falmouth and Cumberland.
Stonyfield Organic is Working with South Portland to Organically Maintain Bug Light Park
Portland Press Herald - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Stonyfield Organic, an organic yogurt company in New Hampshire, just announced their biggest mission yet, StonyFIELDS, a nationwide effort to help at least 35 communities across the country transition their public parks and youth sports fields to organic maintenance programs, and Bug Light Park in South Portland Maine is the first on that list. Since 2017, the Parks Department has only been mowing the grass. Now Stonyfield Organic and South Portland are working together to create a demonstration area in Bug Light Park to show how a challenging landscape (compacted soil, no irrigation, saltwater ocean spray, etc) can be rehabbed organically.
Column: Those fruits of the earth that bring culinary delights
Morning Sentinel - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Fall in central Maine some 50 years ago meant coming home after school to apple pie, applesauce cake or apple crisp, straight out of my mother’s oven. There was nothing like the scent of cooking apples wafting through the house on a chilly day. ~ Amy Calder
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