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: Birds aren’t absent. They’re just ignoring your feeder
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

One can’t draw too many conclusions from just one brief survey near my house. If my hypothesis is correct that the usual birds are still present, and they are ignoring feeders because of the sheer abundance of natural food in the treetops, we would have to replicate the same study in your yard. I’ll be over right after lunch. If I’m late, start without me. ~ Bob Duchesne
As climate change fuels fears about nuclear waste, Maine looks to Trump for solution
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

Atomic power has not been generated in Maine since 1996, but an end to the public health risk posed by nuclear waste stored here remains at least a decade away. And the impacts of climate change add a new sense of urgency to the hunt for a solution. The nuclear waste — 60 concrete-encased, steel canisters holding 1,400 spent nuclear fuel rods and four containers of irradiated steel removed from the Maine Yankee plant’s reactor vessel during decommissioning — will pose a threat to humans and the environment for at least 10,000 years. But 35 years after a law required the federal government to remove 540 metric tons of spent nuclear fuel from a Wiscasset storage site, the chairman of a local advisory panel said the fuel likely will remain in Wiscasset for at least another decade — maybe two.
Did you know?...About the Antiquities Act
Other - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

Trout magazine - The Antiquities Act has been used over 100 times by both Democratic and Republican Presidents, throughout the country. It has protected places like Katahdin Woods and Waters in Maine, home to native brook trout and Atlantic salmon habitat, as well as many important historical locations. The Act has proven itself time and time again to be a vital part of the effort to protect America's cultural and environmental beauty, keeping America's public land heritage and legacy safe.
King promotes lobster emoji on NBC Nightly News
Mainebiz - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, promoted the idea of adding a lobster emoji to the Unicode Consortium as part of an NBC Nightly News segment with correspondent Harry Smith. The consortium is adding 56 emojis between now and January, and King earlier this year sent an email to Unicode advocating for a lobster emoji for 2018. Smith interviewed King on Oct. 21 in Southport. "If it helps sell some lobsters, I'm for it," King said.
Blog: A Busy, Successful Season at the Monson Appalachian Trail Visitor Center
Natural Resources Council of Maine - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

On June 7, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy opened the doors of the Monson A.T. Visitor Center at its new location in the Monson Historical Society building on Main Street. Since then, we’ve been open seven days a week, and we’ve welcomed over four thousand visitors. Our final day of the season was October 15. ~ Wendy Weiger
Land Trusts complete projects in all 16 counties to benefit Maine industries
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

Maine has the smallest percentage of public land of all the states on the East Coast, 6.5%. So we are very lucky that Maine has one of the most active land trust communities in the nation, with more land trusts per capita than any other state. Collectively, Maine’s 75+ land conservation organizations have conserved a little more than 2.5 million acres of the state. 600,000 acres owned by land trusts are available to the public for outdoor recreation. 1,900,000 acres are still privately owned, on the tax rolls, and protected with conservation easements.
How to protect your yard against critters, according to a wildlife expert
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

Maynard Stanley, Jr., who runs the Critter Catcher wildlife control business in Owls Head, has a lot of ideas for ways that you can keep wild animals at bay on your property. He also has good reasons why you should want to do so. Instead of trying to kill all the animals that come onto your property, he has a better way. Let them know this territory belongs to the humans who live there in a way they can understand.
Delays in Massachusetts could affect natural gas customers in Maine
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

Continued delay in building a new pumping station in Massachusetts for natural gas bound for Maine could lead to higher prices for heat and electricity, if the station isn’t finished before the 2019 heating season. Plans to fully open the Atlantic Bridge pipeline project next month and send lower-cost gas from Pennsylvania north have been stalled by ongoing opposition to building a large compressor station in Weymouth, Massachusetts.
Opinion: More urgency needed in tackling problem that can seriously harm children – lead paint
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, October 26, 2017 

This week is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, an opportunity to come together to figure out how to reduce lead exposure and raise awareness of the plague of lead contamination in our communities. But as a landlord and a father in one of the most heavily lead-polluted communities in Maine, it is just one more week that I get down to work removing this dangerous toxin from the homes where thousands of kids grow up. Let this be the week that we acknowledge how much there is still to do, remind ourselves we have the tools to do it, and commit to finally ending the toxic legacy of lead poisoning for every child in America. ~ Jay Allen, Lewiston
Acadia-area groups raise concerns about possible tripling of park entrance fee
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

The vehicle entrance fee to Acadia National Park would jump 180 percent – from $25 to $70 – next year under a proposal already eliciting concerns from some groups and businesses. The park service says revenue from the price hike it is considering at Acadia and 16 other popular parks during peak tourism season would be used to reduce a backlog in maintenance and infrastructure projects. Friends of Acadia and the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce were quick to raise concerns about the potential increase. To comment on the entrance fee proposal, go to:
Acadia friends fear fee increase would drive away visitors
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

Acadia National Park’s largest advocacy group fears that a seasonal entrance fee increase proposed by President Donald Trump’s administration would scare away visitors and decrease the park’s budget. The 5,000-member Friends of Acadia National Park is concerned that Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke’s Tuesday proposal “may serve as a deterrent for the average citizen to enjoy our parks,” said David MacDonald, president and CEO of Friends of Acadia.
New Hiking Challenge to Engage Local Residents in the Outdoors
Bethel Citizen - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

Members of the Maine West collaborative recently launched a new hiking challenge designed to engage local residents in healthy, outdoor recreation activities. The Second Nature Adventure Challenge promotes nine different walks and hikes in the Oxford Hills, River Valley and Bethel areas through a new website that encourages participants to earn and share digital badges as they track progress in completing activities. The program includes a combination of easy, moderate and strenuous hikes in each region — including the Swift River Trail in Rumford, Round Mountain in Albany, and Noyes Mountain in Greenwood.
EPA chemical review would exclude millions of tons of toxins
Associated Press - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

Spurred by the chemical industry, President Donald Trump’s administration is retreating from a congressionally mandated review of some of the most dangerous chemicals in public use: millions of tons of asbestos, flame retardants and other toxins in homes, offices and industrial plants across the United States.
USDA Giving $100K To Maine Seaweed Products Company
Associated Press - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is awarding $100,000 to a Buxton seaweed harvesting and processing company. The money is going to VitaminSea to fund a concept study for larger scale commercialization of its seaweed products. VitaminSea harvests seaweed to create health products such as nutritional supplements, plant fertilizers and skin care products. It also uses it to make animal feed.
As Maine waits for Trump, GOP bill would make it harder for presidents to create national monuments
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

A bill proposed by U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop that’s now under congressional review would severely curtail presidential power to create national monuments such as Maine’s. The Utah Republican’s proposal requires environmental review and approval from governors as well as county and state governments for monuments larger than 10,000 acres. Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument encompasses 87,562 acres east of Baxter State Park and was created by then-President Barack Obama’s executive order in August 2016.
Right whales could be extinct in less than 25 years, scientists warn after spate of deaths
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

Scientists who study the endangered North Atlantic right whale estimate that the species will be doomed to extinction by 2040 if humans don’t make substantive changes to protect them. The dire prediction, delivered at an annual meeting of experts on the species in Halifax, Nova Scotia, comes amid the worst die-off researchers have ever recorded. With authorities already reducing ship speeds, researchers say the most important thing people can do is to reduce the risk of the whales getting entangled in fishing gear.
Maine entrepreneurs introduce new wave of plant-based eats
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

Casco-based startup Freshiez first rolled out its all-vegan and all-organic veggie crumbles and burgers to independent grocery stores in April. Six months later, sales have quadrupled, the company says, and restaurants are requesting the pre-cooked products intended for grocery stores.
Column: Join in the fight against climate change
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, October 25, 2017 

What will it take to convince you that climate change is happening and is a problem that must be addressed? That was one of the questions posed at a recent Maine Climate Table meeting, a group chaired by Cathy Lee. Perhaps Lyme disease and deer ticks? The terrible loss of commercial fisheries along the Maine coast as the ocean water warms? The huge number of moose dying from ticks? Erratic weather, including a frightening increase in fires, floods, and hurricanes? Well, you better get on this soon, because your help is desperately needed to save our planet. ~ George Smith
There’s no better medicine than walking in the woods with kids
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

When I was asked to lead a guided hike in Waterville, I didn’t know what to expect. But I would never have guessed that 59 people would show up. I believe that by encouraging children to be active today, they’ll be healthier tomorrow. And furthermore, by fostering an appreciation and love for the wilderness today, they may grow up to be stewards of the environment, to care for our precious wild spaces and wildlife. Maybe some day 5-year-old Max will help conserve an important habitat, or build a community trail, or rescue someone lost on a mountain. He’s already off to a good start, with his insatiable curiosity and a pocket full of bandaids.
Augusta Planning Board gives blessing to farmers’ market in former church
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

The Planning Board has voted to recommend that the city allow the Farmers’ Market at Mill Park to use a vacant former State Street church as its winter home. During the summer, the market is under the pavilion at the city’s Mill Park, on the northern edge of downtown.
Climate Change Journalist Warns: 'Mother Nature Is Playing By Different Rules Now'
National Public Radio - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

Fresh Air - Audio interview Jeff Goodell, author of "The Water Will Come."
Entry fees at popular national parks, including Acadia, could more than double
Associated Press - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

The National Park Service is considering a steep increase in entrance fees at 17 of its most popular parks, mostly in the American West, to address a backlog of maintenance and infrastructure projects. The hike would nearly triple, from $25 to $70. The entry fee at Acadia National Park on Mount Desert Island in Maine is currently $25 for a weekly pass. A 30-day public comment period opened Tuesday. The proposal would not affect several free weekends and holidays at parks throughout the year.
Maine’s Paper Industry Is All But Gone — But Demand For Manufactured Wood Products Is Booming
Maine Public - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

Maine has lost more 2,400 papermaking jobs over the last six years, but analysts say the state is making some strides in manufacturing that are infusing segments of the wood products industry with new hope and vitality. The goal is to find new products that require more skill to make. While primary wood products such as pulp and paper, boards and framing lumber, wood pellets and chips have declined over the last 15 years, secondary wood products such as shingles and Lincoln Logs have rebounded.
Agriculture Commissioner Urges LePage To Sign Food Sovereignty Bill
Maine Public - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

Agriculture Commissioner Walt Whitcomb says the emergency bill passed by the Legislature will prevent a crisis in Maine agriculture. “The bill that passed over the course of the spring and summer was a huge disruption,” he says. Whitcomb says he is urging Gov. Paul LePage sign the bill, which meets federal objections to Maine’s food sovereignty law. Without the changes to address food safety, he says the feds would have taken over the state’s food inspection for meat and poultry, and several slaughterhouses would have been put out of business.
Western Kennebec County towns look for ways to keep farmers on farms
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, October 24, 2017 

A new regional group hopes to help western Kennebec County municipalities help farmers in the face of development pressures and their own mortality. Members of Kennebec West, which so far includes residents from the towns of Manchester, Winthrop and Monmouth, plan to start their effort to help farmers by going directly to their subjects and talking to and surveying farmers, to learn their needs and what the group could do to help.
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