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
Proposed trail along unused tracks would connect Portland, Falmouth, Cumberland, Yarmouth
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

A 9-mile section of unused railroad between Portland and Yarmouth could become the region’s newest multi-use trail. A proposal envisions a trail for walking, cycling and running in the right of way alongside the tracks, instead of replacing the rail line. Regional planners are drafting a trail feasibility assessment. A public meeting about the proposal will be held at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 13 at Lunt Auditorium in Falmouth.
Drop in number of quahogs spurs Maine to ban winter harvesting in New Meadows
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

The New Meadows Lakes along the Brunswick border will be closed to quahog harvesting for the first three months of 2018, and on Sundays the rest of the year, in an effort to reduce mortality associated with winter fishing. The Maine Department of Marine Resources instituted the rule, which prohibits fishing in New Meadows Lakes beginning at sunset on Dec. 31. It also prohibits harvesting quahogs on Sundays, a closure that will continue through April 2019. Recent surveys of the lakes by DMR staff have shown a decline in the quahog population.
Island Institute Holds Forum On Protecting Maine Coast From Effects Of Climate Change
Maine Public - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

Scientists, municipal and state officials, consultants and concerned citizens gathered in Portland Tuesday to consider ways to protect against rising sea-levels and intense storms. Sponsored by the Rockland-based Island Institute, the daylong forum highlighted work up and down the coast documenting the dangers sea-level rise and other climate-change-driven events pose for vulnerable ecosystems and infrastructure.
Maine Group Decries Single Hearing On Proposal To Scrap Clean Power Plan
Maine Public - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

Environmentalists, health groups and others are calling the Trump administration’s single public hearing on abolishment of the Clean Power Plan in West Virginia Tuesday “a sham.” The plan to require power plants to cut carbon emissions was a centerpiece of the Obama administration’s effort address climate change. But utilities don’t like it, and the coal industry says it will result in job losses. Lisa Pohlmann of the Natural Resources Council of Maine says the hearing’s location and limited public input make clear where the administration’s priorities are.
EXCLUSIVE: Holly Lusk tries her luck with Paul LePage again
Maine Environmental News - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

Holly Lusk is spinning the revolving doors again. She worked at the Maine law firm Preti Flaherty, then she worked for the LePage Administration, which is virtually a subsidiary of Preti Flaherty, then she went back to Preti Flaherty to be a lobbyist, now she is back with LePage as deputy chief of staff and legislative policy director. Which means she has her hands into pretty much everything in Maine state government. She will have those hands full trying to keep LePage relevant and out of his own way as a volatile lame duck governor. Lusk was one of two LePage aides who founded his ICE PAC in 2016. However, the political action committee was dissolved last Wednesday. Does that mean Paul LePage and his band of mischief-makers has given up on pushing their extreme anti-government agenda? Not likely.
COA prof's YouTube series wins indie film award
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

The Maine-made YouTube show “The Strange Eyes of Dr. Myes” won a Gotham Independent Film Award for best short-form breakthrough series on Monday. The show was created by College of the Atlantic film professor Nancy Andrews. “The underlying message in ‘Strange Eyes’ is that everything is connected in ways we might not perceive, and we have to work harder to broaden and deepen our consciousness of that,” Andrews said.
Falmouth open-space pioneer honored for decade of service
Forecaster - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

During Bob Shafto’s 10 years as the town’s open space ombudsman, he’s helped Falmouth acquire more than 1,000 acres of open space, brought in millions in grant funding and overseen construction of almost 50 miles of walking trails. Shafto is retiring from his post, but his commitment to open space will continue. With his new-found free time he said he plans to volunteer with the Falmouth Conservation Corps, as well as “do a lot more” camping, canoeing, backpacking, bicycling, kayaking and gardening.” His accomplishments as the open space ombudsman were recognized at the Nov. 13 Town Council meeting.
What happens when a small Maine town and an energy project with global impacts collide
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

A project taking shape about 12 miles offshore from the village of Port Clyde is creating a rift in the tight-knit fishing communities on the St. George peninsula. On one side is Maine Aqua Ventus, a pilot project to test floating turbines as sources of renewable energy. On the other side are fishing families concerned that the turbines and cables used to transport the energy ashore could disrupt fishing habitats on which they rely.
Men rescue deer that fell through ice at Flagstaff Lake
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

Justin Wyman and two game wardens had quite an adventure Sunday, when they scrambled to help a deer that had fallen through the ice on Flagstaff Lake in western Maine.
These Maine men rescue a deer after it falls through thin ice
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

Justin Wyman, who describes himself as an avid deer hunter, said things might have turned out differently if he had encountered the buck a day earlier, when he was in the woods pursuing deer. But he’s glad he was able to help.
Letter: Portland roundabout plan seems unsafe for pedestrians and bicyclists
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 

How will the proposed roundabout at Deering Avenue, Brighton Avenue and Falmouth Street address the safety needs of pedestrians and bicyclists? In the graphic of the roundabout, there is a concerning lack of crosswalks depicted. Additionally, the article mentions that there will be no traffic lights in the roundabout. Many students cross this intersection. How will they know whether a vehicle in the roundabout is intending to exit into their path of crossing? What studies have been done regarding pedestrian safety in other urban areas of mixed use? Bicyclists don’t fare much better. Come on, Portland, we can do better. ~ Janet Fischer, Portland
Maine legislators scrutinizing tax break program used by over 200 businesses
Portland Press Herald - Monday, November 27, 2017 

The Legislature’s Taxation Committee on Monday reviewed a report by the Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability that found some companies have gained tax benefits under the Pine Tree Development Zone program without creating any new jobs. The August report by the Legislature’s watchdog agency also found that legislative changes to the program over the years have made it available well beyond the high-unemployment areas it was meant to serve. When the program was first enacted it was meant to help hard-luck towns like Millinocket and East Millinocket, which saw an exodus of people after the closure of paper mills.
Maine’s puffin colony has its most productive year on record
Associated Press - Monday, November 27, 2017 

The Audubon Society says the 2017 nesting season was the most productive on record for a group of Maine puffins. Atlantic puffins are small seabirds with an awkward walk and colorful beaks that are popular with eco-tourists. They are at the southern edge of their breeding range in Maine, and the Eastern Egg Rock colony in Muscongus Bay is the subject of much study. Audubon says the colony increased from 150 to 172 pairs during this year’s nesting season. The society says that is the highest single-year increase since puffins recolonized the little island in 1981.
The Orono Bog Boardwalk: A Reflection and a Request
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 27, 2017 

On Oct. 14, the Orono Bog Boardwalk, an ADA wheelchair compliant facility, managed by the City of Bangor, UMaine, and Orono Land Trust, closed for the season after its 15th year. The Boardwalk has become a popular outdoor recreational facility with an estimated 350,000 visitors having walked the 4,200-foot-long Boardwalk that loops through the Orono Bog since its opening in 2003. Visitors from 50 states and 40 countries are represented. In the words of Professor Robert Klose: “The Bog Boardwalk is everything a considerate, intelligent, carefully thought-out environmental project should be. It benefits everyone, offends no one, has no critics. It is a gift to the people of Maine and to those who visit Maine. In its short life it has risen to the status of a state treasure.”
Attorney General Janet Mills opposes Trump Administration’s proposal to dramatically increase entrance fees at national parks
Maine Government News - Monday, November 27, 2017 

Maine Attorney General Janet Mills joined a bipartisan coalition of 11 attorneys general to express her strong opposition to the National Park Service’s proposal to dramatically increase entrance fees at 17 national parks, including Acadia National Park in Maine. Under the proposal, the per vehicle entrance fee during the five-month peak season would increase to $70 from $25 or $30. Motorcycle, bicycle and pedestrian entrance fees would also increase by double or more. The attorneys general sent a comment letter to NPS opposing the increased fees.
5 Maine products for the outdoors-person on your holiday shopping list
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Monday, November 27, 2017 

If you like the idea of shopping local this holiday season, it’s easy to do in Maine when it comes to purchasing outdoor gear. There are several smaller Maine businesses that create some really awesome, innovative products. Here are just a few.
Time to tell Soil Conservation Districts what you want from them
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, November 27, 2017 

Maine’s sixteen Soil & Water Conservation Districts are seeking public input on local priorities for federal conservation funding. Districts are convening meetings of Local Working Groups, which provide input to the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service on local natural resource priorities and criteria for conservation activities and programs.
Opinion: Oil drilling in the Arctic will spoil the coastal plains migratory birds call home
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 27, 2017 

Just how far away the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is from Maine depends on your perspective. To whimbrels, short-billed dowitchers and semipalmated sandpipers — shorebird species that nest in the Arctic refuge before migrating through our state — Maine’s coastal mudflats and beaches are simply a stopover, a place to fatten up before continuing their annual migration to South America. Maine’s people and our avian Arctic visitors need Sen. Susan Collins to stay strong and reject any proposal that threatens the incredible natural wonders of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. ~ Susan Gallo, Maine Audubon
Editorial: Trump preparing to debase national monuments
Maine Environmental News - Monday, November 27, 2017 

It has been more than three months since Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke presented his recommendations on the fate of more than two dozen national monuments to President Donald Trump. The Administration has refused to comply with Freedom of Information Act requests by releasing the monuments report even though it was leaked to news outlets months ago. Among Zinke's recommendations are to allow commercial logging in the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument, which could also be opened to mining, expanded off-road motorized activities, and other incompatible uses. Trump is expected to announce his actions in December. He should be defending the protections for America's national monuments. However, we have to expect the worst. Teddy Roosevelt is rolling over in his grave.
Meredith Corp. Buys Time Inc. In Koch-Backed Deal
National Public Radio - Monday, November 27, 2017 

Meredith Corp., owner of Better Homes & Gardens and Family Circle, has struck a deal to buy magazine publisher Time Inc., for an all-cash backed transaction of $1.84 billion, joining two vastly different media portfolios. It's a long-sought-after victory for Meredith, secured in large part by a $650 million investment from Charles G. Koch and David H. Koch, the billionaire brothers known for their politically conservative advocacy. Meredith says the funds from the Kochs' private investment arm will be used to finance the deal and refinance existing debt, and that the Kochs "will have no influence on Meredith's editorial or managerial operations." The Kochs previously expressed interest in acquiring a handful of media properties including the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune.
Canadian company plans mining test on Pickett Mountain in northern Maine
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 27, 2017 

A Canadian mineral exploration company has completed the purchase of nearly 6,900 acres in northern Maine and plans to begin test drilling next month under a mountain with known deposits of copper and other metals. Wolfden Resources Corp. announced on Nov. 16 that the company had finalized the purchase of 6,871 acres north of Patten for $8.5 million. The Ontario-based company is still in the very early stages of exploration but plans to gather additional information about the potential size and quality of the ore deposit with below- and above-ground surveys of the site starting next month.
Meredith Corp. buys Time Inc. for $1.8 billion with Koch money
Associated Press - Sunday, November 26, 2017 

Meredith Corp. announced Sunday that it is buying Time Inc. for about $1.8 billion, a deal that joins two giant magazine companies. Meredith brings with it a magazine portfolio that includes Better Homes & Gardens, Family Circle, allrecipes and Shape, while Time Inc. owns properties including Time, Sports Illustrated, People, Fortune and Entertainment Weekly. Meredith is using $3.55 billion in financing commitments from a variety of lenders and a $650 million preferred equity from Koch Equity Development, an investment arm of Koch Industries, to finance the deal.
Candidate to lead U.S. Bureau of Land Management stirs controversy
Associated Press - Sunday, November 26, 2017 

A candidate to lead an agency that oversees public lands totaling one-eighth of the U.S. says environmentalists mischaracterize her as an advocate of signing those landscapes over to state and local governments and private interests when in fact she’s got no opinion on the issue. Cheyenne attorney Karen Budd-Falen drew protesters when she addressed a recent land-use forum in western Montana. The protesters spoke out against the growing movement to wrest public control of public lands. Her legal advocacy has laid the groundwork for those who want the federal government to relinquish public land.
Maine 2nd Congressional District Election 2018
Maine Environmental News - Sunday, November 26, 2017 

Maine's next Second Congressional District election is set for November 6, 2018. The primary election will be on June 12, 2018. According to various, mostly reliable, sources as of November 26, 2017, there are 5 declared Democratic candidates, and 4 independent candidates, who want to challenge incumbent Republican Bruce Poliquin. Maine's Second Congressional District is geographically the largest in the eastern U.S. More so than in most regions, the environment is the economy. However, Rep. Poliquin has done little to benefit to Maine's land, water, air and wildlife. Only his political incompetence has saved Maine from suffering even more damage from his policies. It will be important to find out the environmental policies of each of the candidates.
Bad News! Maine coyotes are becoming wolves
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Sunday, November 26, 2017 

The newspaper headline would have pleased many Maine hunters: “Future of Coyotes in doubt.” But Patrick Whittle’s Associated Press story related that the reason the future of coyotes is in doubt is because they are becoming wolves. The “increasing wolflike traits are making it a larger, more adaptable animal equipped for survival on the East Coast, scientists say. The growing wolflike characteristics mean humans must learn to better coexist with the adaptable predators, scientists and wildlife advocates said,” reported Whittle.
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