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
Four people arrested at CMP’s Augusta headquarters during solar power protest
Kennebec Journal - Monday, January 29, 2018 

Several members of a protest led by Quaker Meetings were arrested Monday afternoon at Central Maine Power headquarters over solar power and net metering. About 30 protesters assembled at CMP’s Edison Drive facility at noontime, with one hoisting a homemade sign reading “Let’s move beyond petroleum to a clean energy future.” The protesters were not allowed inside the CMP building lobby, but were allowed in the parking lot, where they sang songs about the sun and held up signs calling out CMP for being “shady.” Four protesters from a group calling itself “Speak The Truth to CMP,” were willfully arrested after refusing to leave the property when told they were trespassing.
Infrastructure Scam
Center for American Progress - Monday, January 29, 2018 

During tomorrow’s State of the Union address, President Trump is expected to tout his infrastructure plan, which he has talked about since his time on the campaign trail. But a leaked draft of the plan show it’s nothing more than a scam. It calls for cutting or significantly changing at least 10 bedrock environmental laws to make it easier for corporations to bypass critical protections for air, water, and wildlife.
Entrepreneurs purchased paradise, then gave it away
Other - Monday, January 29, 2018 

[Ed: Though not Maine news, this has global implications.] In Chile’s largest ever conservation bequest by a private citizen, Kris Tompkins on Monday donated a million acres of land in Patagonia to create five new national parks. The donation includes a 750,000-acre tract to be known as Patagonia Park. The million acres of land from Tompkins will be merged with ​9​ million acres of government property to be designated new park lands. The handover of the lands culminates a 25-year campaign by Tompkins and her late husband Doug Tompkins. While heralded as a conservation pioneer by many, Tompkins’ environmental campaigns for years faced opposition.
It’s been a rough year for Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke – and it’s still January
Washington Post - Monday, January 29, 2018 

The start of the new year has been rocky for Interior Department Secretary Ryan Zinke. He’s on the hot seat for exempting Florida from the Trump administration’s expanded oil and gas offshore drilling proposal without bothering to notify his boss, and for his failure to disclose an investment in a Montana gun company, a possible conflict of interest. Those stumbles added to other missteps that have befallen the secretary during the 10 months since he took control of the department, which manages vast federal lands including monuments, parks, refuges as well as abundant natural resources. As the year unfolds, Zinke will continue to deal with highly contentious changes to national monuments [including Katahdin Woods & Waters in Maine].
Maine blocks new wind projects until economic impact is clear
Other - Monday, January 29, 2018 

Renewables Now - The governor of Maine, Paul LePage, last week placed a moratorium on issuing any new wind project permits until it becomes clear how big of an economic impact such developments have on local tourism. Governor LePage issued on Wednesday an executive order establishing the Maine Wind Energy Advisory Commission for the purposes of studying the economic impact of potential wind turbines in Maine and assessing the economic impact of expedited wind rules and procedures. Wind projects will not be getting permits until the report is issued in writing, the order says.
Conservation Practices Help Lobsters Weather Climate Change
Other - Monday, January 29, 2018 

WCAI - The lobster fishery in southern New England is in trouble. The population has declined by almost eighty percent in the past few decades. In contrast, lobsters in the Gulf of Maine have exploded. What gives? Rising water temperatures are killing baby lobsters in places like Buzzards Bay and Narragansett Bay. Meanwhile, in the Gulf of Maine, which is one of the most rapidly warming ocean areas anywhere in the world, the increase in temperatures has put lobsters into their sweet spot. Andrew Pershing, chief scientific officer at the Ecosystem Modeling Lab at Gulf of Maine Research Institute, said had southern New England lobstermen "done a management process more like what we have in Maine, they would have seen a smaller decline and probably would have more of a fishery than what they have now.”
'It's Going To Be Bad:' Maine Young People Petition For Action On Climate Change
Maine Public - Monday, January 29, 2018 

The last couple of months have seen a rise in young people turning to the law to address climate change. Some are suing the Trump administration in federal court over government's failure to protect against climate change. Here in Maine, a group of young people and voters is petitioning the Department of Environmental Protection to address carbon emissions in the state.
Salt, The Solution To Winter's Dangers, Threatens US Waters
Maine Public - Monday, January 29, 2018 

Truckloads of road salt used to keep highways ice-free in the winter are starting to take a toll on the environment. Researchers say they're finding rising salt levels in hundreds of lakes, especially in the Northeast and Midwest where sodium chloride is used most. The findings are raising fears that salting roads could put everything from microscopic zooplankton to fish at risk in coming decades. The environmental concerns - and a desire to reduce costs - have prompted public works agencies in many states and cities to search for ways to cut their salt use.
Trump’s offshore drilling proposal for U.S. waters may impact Maine
Other - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

USM Free Press - A trip to the beach means a day in the sun, laying in the sand, and looking out into the never ending ocean. With the Trump administration’s recent proposal to allow offshore drilling, the people of Maine may be looking out at a big yellow oil rig two miles out in the ocean. The current plan is to open the entire coastline of the U.S. to allow offshore drilling, including the over 3,000 miles of Maine’s coastline.
The Maine Outdoor Coalition
WGAN Radio - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Kaitlyn Bernard and Eliza Baker-Wacks discuss the evolution of the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend.
Healthy learning at Roberts Farm Preserve in Norway
Sun Journal - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

The sounds Sunday were all too familiar: Skis scraping against icy trails while some skiers uttered “oof” as they fell to the snow. And it all was accompanied by laughter and words of encouragement at Robert’s Farm Preserve in Norway, where young skiers were honing their skills during the Bill Koch League event, organized by the Western Foothills Land Trust.
Retirement of Acadia leader signals end of era
Acadia On My Mind Blog - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

The Acadia National Park superintendent and more than 100 other people marked the passing of an era at an event to honor the work of longtime Acadia Ranger Charlie Jacobi.
Biggest law breakers are ATV riders, snowmobilers, and boaters
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

During the 8-year period 2007 – 2015, game wardens gave more citations to ATV riders, snowmobilers, and boaters than any other outdoor group. ATV riders were the worst law breakers, getting a total of 4,863 citations for violating Maine’s laws.
Trump hints he’d be open to remaining in Paris climate pact
Bloomberg News - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

President Donald Trump says he’d be open to keeping the U.S. in the Paris climate accord, partly because of his warm relationship with French President Emmanuel Macron — but also cast doubt on the science of climate change. “There is a cooling, and there’s a heating,” he said. “I mean, look, it used to not be climate change, it used to be global warming. That wasn’t working too well because it was getting too cold all over the place. The ice caps were going to melt, they were going to be gone by now, but now they’re setting records.” Seven of the 18 hottest years have been logged in the 21st century, according to NOAA.
Hyper Secretive Maine Wind Backers Suddenly Concerned About Public Meetings for New Wind Commission
Citizens Task Force on Wind Power - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Look at the bids that came in for the various wind projects responding to the Mass RFP. Many were so heavily redacted that they provided almost no information as to where great swaths of Maine would be grossly transformed. Many pages were 100% black. Now read the following prominent and large article today in the Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram decrying the fact that Governor LePage has formed a wind energy commission that "will meet behind closed doors – out of view of the public or the press".
Maine farmers hit with new federal food safety rules
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

The family farmers who have worked the land at Goranson Farm in Dresden since the 1960s say they take care to grow produce for their customers in a careful manner, tilling the fields with draft horses and recently implementing solar power. But lately, mandates imposed by the federal Food Safety Modernization Act have meant that a lot of their attention, and financial resources, have gone toward complying with regulations and building expensive new infrastructure rather than farming. Goran Johanson of the Goranson Farm said, "These are all things that really should be done, but it’s a huge financial burden on us as farmers.”
Survey of Casco Bay finds microplastics in four distinct regions
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

The first survey of Casco Bay for microplastics, the troubling, hard-to-see fragments of consumer products that are mysteriously showing up in waters around the world, found the shreds of plastic in four locations, with the highest concentration in busy Portland Harbor, according to new data compiled by the Friends of Casco Bay. The assessment identified pieces of the plastic waste, which marine life can ingest and which attract toxins. But none of the microbeads banned in Maine in 2015 showed up.
What you need to know about microplastics
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

These pieces of plastic, often no bigger than a sesame seed, come from many sources but are all man-made.
Is your fleece contributing to the microplastics problem?
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

One of the many sources of microplastics is fiber from synthetic clothing. These microscopic pieces of plastic shed into the environment and into the wastewater system when the garments are laundered. Soft and cozy though it is, fleece is one of the fabrics contributing to the microplastic in the environment. Here is L.L. Bean spokeswoman Carolyn Beem’s full statement on what the company is doing to mitigate the problem.
Charts: a decade of rapid growth for wind power in Maine
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Over the course of a decade, wind power in Maine grew from from producing virtually none of Maine’s electricity to becoming a major player in the market that produced roughly one fifth of the state’s electric power in 2017. Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration indicates that electric production from natural gas power plants, which have long been the state’s largest source of electric power, has declined significantly over the same time period. In fact, Maine’s wind farms produced more electricity than the state’s natural gas plants for several months during the winter and early spring of 2017.
Shielded Maine wind energy commission receives pushback
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Gov. Paul LePage’s imposition of a moratorium on new wind power permits last week was only half of the reason renewable energy advocates and other groups were so upset. LePage also created a Wind Energy Advisory Commission that will meet behind closed doors – out of view of the public or the press – as it examines the industry’s impact on tourism and potential regulatory changes when siting the massive wind turbines. LePage exempted the commission from public meetings requirements under the Maine Freedom of Access Act.
Watch the Maine deer dinner that’s causing an online feeding frenzy
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Richard McMahon started feeding whitetail deer on his 12 acres in Brownville nine years ago. But in the past month or so, McMahon’s operation about 45 miles north of Bangor in Piscataquis County – feeding as many as 200 deer a day – has become a bit of a social-media sensation.
Column: Trimming the bear population would be good for the state
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

It’s time we take a much closer look at how much of an impact bears have on Maine’s deer and moose populations. Then we need to take appropriate responsible action based on the results. The days of “letting nature take its course” ended shortly after two-legged hominids learned to use tools. We now bear the onus of responsibly managing our wildlife resources, even if it means regularly removing a portion of the crop. ~ Bob Humphrey
Column: For gardeners and farmers, the time to prepare for climate change is now
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Farmers have long understood weather. As they have grown and raised fruits, vegetables, flowers and animals over millennia, they’ve had to cope with unusual weather events, too much rain or too little, overly hot or overly cold. Now, they must learn to understand and handle the changing climate, Glen Koehler told a crowded lecture hall at the Agricultural Trades Show in Augusta earlier this month. Koehler, a fruit-tree specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. The average temperature in Maine has risen 3 degrees Fahrenheit since 1895, more than most of the rest of the country. ~ Tom Atwell
Opinion: Column, news article take unfair swipes at man tapped for Maine environmental board
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 28, 2018 

Shame on the Portland Press Herald for doing a hatchet job on Mark Dubois. Knee-jerk criticisms without any facts about Mark's background, education and experience are what fuel mistrust. Does the Press Herald think that the president of Poland Spring would call Mark and tell him how to vote? I believe in giving everyone a fair hearing, and because that was done at the confirmation hearing, the Senate has wisely recognized and confirmed Mark Dubois. ~ Bert Kendall, Cumberland
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