March 23, 2017  
Announcements               
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

2017 Maine Sustainability & Water Conference, Mar 30
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 23, 2017 

Keynote "Conserving Pools and Watersheds" by Aram Calhoun, Professor of Wetland Ecology, UMaine. At Augusta Civic Center, March 30, 7:30 am - 4 pm.
Northern Goshawks in the Northeast, Mar 30
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 23, 2017 

Speaker: David Brinker, Maryland Natural Heritage Program. At Ladd Recreation Center, Wayne, March 30, 7 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Land Trust.
Grow Your Own Mushrooms, Mar 30
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 23, 2017 

Speaker: Ben Whatley of Whatley Farm. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 30, 6:30 pm.
Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Wednesday, March 22, 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
Backyard Bees, Mar 29
Event - Posted - Wednesday, March 22, 2017 

Beekeeper Mike Mcnally talks about keeping bees. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 29, 12 pm.
Planning a Garden for Preserving, Mar 29
Event - Posted - Wednesday, March 22, 2017 

Speaker: Kate McCarty of UMaine Cooperative Extension. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 29, 6:30 pm.
New interactive Androscoggin River Trail Guide
Publication - Tuesday, March 21, 2017 

The Androscoggin River Trail Guide is an interactive, mobile-friendly website describing launch site details, river mileages, points of interest, and other on-river information to help guide paddlers down the Androscoggin.
Inspired by Nature, Mar 28
Event - Posted - Tuesday, March 21, 2017 

Wildlife biologist and author of I Am Coyote, Geri will illustrate how nature inspires her. At Topsham Library, March 28, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Birding at Plum Island, Mar 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 18, 2017 

A field trip to find special winter birds. At Plum Island, MA, March 25, 7 am - 4 pm. Sponsored by Stanton Bird Club.
Trump's "America First Budget"
Publication - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The Office of Management and Budget today released the Trump Administration's 2018 bare-bones budget outline.
Top "Public Lands Enemies" in Congress
Publication - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A Center for Biological Diversity report analyzed 132 bills that were introduced in Congress from 2011 to 2016, and identified the lawmakers who authored and cosponsored the greatest number of these bills. The list that emerged includes 9 members of the U.S. House of Representatives and 6 U.S. senators from 8 states.
Conservation and Management of Woodcock, Waterfowl, and Grouse, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Speaker: Kelsey Sullivan, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. At Ladd Recreation Center, Wayne, March 23, 7 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Land Trust.
Perennial Vegetables for Maine, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Aaron Parker of Edgewood Nursery talks about perennial vegetables for Maine. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 23, 6:30 pm.
Don't let Trump make massive cuts to the EPA
Action Alert - Wednesday, March 15, 2017 

Trump aims to cut the EPA by more than 25%. Tell your Senators: Stop Trump from gutting our bedrock environmental protections.
Bats of the World, Mar 22
Event - Posted - Wednesday, March 15, 2017 

Bats comprise nearly one-quarter of the world’s approximately 4,000 mammal species, yet humans continue to fear and misunderstand them. Chewonki presentation for K to 11 years old. At Patten Library, Bath, March 22, 4 pm.
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News Items
President Trump’s Proposed Budget Is a Blow to Fighting Climate Change, and It’s Not Just the EPA
TIME - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The budget proposal submitted to Congress by President Donald Trump, if enacted, would effectively eliminate the federal government's role addressing man-made climate change with budget cuts targeting key programs at several federal agencies. The largest cuts to climate programs by dollar value occur at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), but other reductions at the Energy, State and Treasury departments would also harm the ability for the federal government to combat global warming. Considered together, the reductions deal a blow to domestic greenhouse gas reduction efforts, clean energy development and international diplomacy centered on climate change. "We're not spending money on that anymore," White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said.
Some well-known inns put up 'for sale' sign
Mainebiz - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

With the tourism season around the corner, a few prominent Maine inns are on the market, including:
The Trade Winds in Rockland, The Ocean Gate Resort on Southport Island, The Augusta Inn, and The Cedar Crest Inn in Camden.
Browntail Invasion
Coastal Journal - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A fuzzy invader is waiting in silence above the heads of thousands in the Midcoast region. Browntail moths, an invasive European pest, are on track to be a massive nuisance once again this summer.
Brunswick Council debated bag ban
Coastal Journal - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Efforts to ban single-use plastic bags came to a head as the Brunswick Town Council heard extensive public comments and discussed the issue for more than an hour before narrowly voting to leave the decision to the next regular meeting. Public comment on the issue was mixed.
Augusta to take Howard Hill property despite concerns about potential future financial obligation
Kennebec Journal - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

City councilors voted unanimously Thursday to reaffirm their desire for the city to acquire Howard Hill, despite concerns that accepting it from Kennebec Land Trust could commit the city to spending an undetermined amount money to comply with state regulations. Howard Hill encompasses 164 wooded acres that serve as the scenic forested backdrop for the Maine's State House in Augusta.
Deep cuts in Trump’s proposed budget would have dramatic impact in Maine
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The budget that President Trump proposed Thursday would have serious consequences across Maine. The Environmental Protection Agency faces the largest cut in the entire budget – 31 percent and a staff reduction of 3,200 – which environmentalists say would devastate environmental protection in Maine. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency’s Sea Grant program would disappear. The program has funded groundbreaking work on lobsters. The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service gives technical support to farms across Maine on topics diverse as soil and energy usage. The Farm Service Agency works on everything from disaster and flood relief to helping dairy farmers with protections on milk pricing. Trump wants to eliminate the Northern Border Regional Commission, which provides to distressed communities in the “Northern Forest region” of Maine.
Judge: Rockweed on Private Land Isn't Public Property
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A Washington County Superior Court judge has ruled in favor of several shorefront property owners who maintain that rockweed, a form of seaweed, is not a resource that falls under the public trust. In his ruling, Justice Harold Stewart II concluded that rockweed growing in the intertidal zone is the property of the shorefront owner and should not be construed to be included under exemptions that include fishing.
Judge Rules in Favor of Proposed Hampden Biofuel Project
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A Superior Court judge has found in favor of a Maryland-based trash-to energy company that wants to build a $69 million dollar biogas, organic trash disposal facility in Hampden, just south of Bangor. Plans are for Fiberright to take over the disposal contract for a group of 187 municipalities in the region currently doing business with the Penobscot Energy Recovery Co. in Orrington. Last August, PERC filed an appeal of a decision by the Maine Department of Environment Protection to grant permits for Fiberight’s Hampden project.
Trump’s outline for NOAA budget could eliminate essential Maine program
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The national $73 million Sea Grant program, which includes about a dozen researchers affiliated with the University of Maine, could be eliminated if Congress approves drastic budget cuts proposed for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration by President Trump. Funding for the state’s Department of Marine Resources and for collecting weather and climate data in the Gulf of Maine also could be put at risk by the president’s proposal. Paul Anderson, director of the Sea Grant program at University of Maine, said Tuesday that the money NOAA has funded for the program has been “money well spent” because it has helped draw additional funding to Maine and has helped spur economic development.
President's Budget Threatens Bird Conservation And Public Lands
American Bird Conservancy - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

President Trump’s proposed 2018 budget would gut major programs and protections for birds and for America’s public lands, and put decades of conservation work at risk. Three agencies essential to protecting birds and habitats would be among the hardest hit:
• Department of Agriculture’s budget would be cut by $4.7 billion (21%). At risk are programs to conserve and restore habitats, potentially preventing the need to list species under the Endangered Species Act.
• Department of the Interior would lose $1.5 billion (12%). Puts at risk essential migratory bird conservation laws and programs.
• Environmental Protection Agency would be cut by $2.6 billion (31%).
These five animals are disappearing from Maine
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A wide diversity of animals call Maine home, and many of those animals are getting along just fine. But there are a number of creatures that are becoming scarce, and when their numbers dip low enough, they’re placed on the Maine State List of Threatened and Endangered Species. The following five animals are on that list: Little brown bat, Box turtle, Black racer, New England cottontail, and Piping plovers.
Maine Delegates, Environmental Groups Critical of Trump's Budget Plan
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Reaction in Maine to President Donald Trump’s proposed $1.15 trillion budget has been swift - and critical. Democrat Chellie Pingree, Maine’s 1st District representative, says the plan to slash many domestic programs to finance a significant increase in the military and make a down payment on construction of a U.S.-Mexico border wall is “foolish, shortsighted. “ Independent Sen. Angus King says it would harm people, families, and businesses across Maine. Republican Sen. Susan Collins says every president’s budget is revised by Congress. The Natural Resources Council of Maine says it “declares war on clean air, clean water and public health.”
President Trump Wants to Kill This Clean Energy Program Even Though It Has Bipartisan Support
TIME - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The federal renewable energy program known as ARPA-E has been a hallmark of bipartisan cooperation since it was created less than a decade ago, funding more than 400 early-stage projects and receiving support in Congress from both parties. Now, President Donald Trump wants to defund it entirely — one many changes in a budget request that prioritizes military spending and slashes support for environmental programs.
Trump budget would trample Maine
Washington Post - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

More details about President Trump's 2018 budget proposal are emerging. Here is a partial list from The Washington Post focusing on environmental and conservation programs. If enacted as proposed, the budget could decimate Maine, especially rural communities, especially those where a majority of voters supported Trump.
Classic hunting book’s prose still ‘lyrical’ 75 years after its initial release
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

William Harnden Foster was one of a kind. Artist, wordsmith, hunter, conservationist…and author of one of the American sport’s top editions, “New England Grouse Shooting.” Earlier this year, Wild River Press unveiled a reprint of the classic book. Stretching 194 pages and featuring all of Foster’s original drawings, it’s sure to become a collector’s item among the latest generation of hunters.
Trump's budget: Worse than we thought
Sierra Club - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club says, "Trump's budget is public, and it's even worse for the environment than we thought. The spending blueprint slashes the EPA budget by one-third to its lowest level in 40 years, decimating its staff and life-saving programs, and nearly obliterates the Department of the Interior's capacity to protect America's parks and wildlife. Eliminated: Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay restoration, and rec programs for at-risk youth. Shrunk beyond recognition: Superfund cleanup, air quality programs and clean energy research. Trump's priorities? Turning Yucca Mountain into a nuclear waste dump while funneling billions to his preposterous border wall."
Trump FY 18 Budget Proposes Devastating Cuts to Federal History & Humanties Funding
Other - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The National Coalition for History says the Trump 2018 budget proposal eliminates:
• National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)
• National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)
• Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
• National Heritage Areas program at the National Park Service
• 20 grant programs at the Department of Education
Department of Interior’s budget is cut 12%. How this affects the National Park Service cannot be ascertained at this point.
Lawmakers Spike Proposal to Exempt Large Containers from Bottle Bill
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

For the third time in six years, state lawmakers are poised to defeat a bill designed to exempt large containers from Maine’s landmark bottle law. The Environmental and Natural Resources Committee voted 8-0 Thursday to kill a bill that would exempt containers larger than 46 ounces from the law. The Maine Municipal Association also opposed the bill, arguing that it would increase the volume of waste and recycling for municipalities.
BREAKING: Trump's "Skinny Budget" devastates environmental and conservation programs
Maine Environmental News - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

President Trump’s 2018 proposed budget increases military spending by 10% and cuts non-defense programs from the 2017 level by 10%, including:
• Agriculture 20.7%
• Energy 5.6%
• Interior 11.7%
• EPA 31.4%
Senators' Proposal Would Make Way for Young Loggers
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Senators from Maine and Idaho are introducing legislation they say would make it easier for aspiring young loggers to get into the business. Sens. Angus King, a Maine independent, and Jim Risch, an Idaho Republican, announced the bill on Thursday. They say the legislation would level the playing field with other agricultural fields by allowing family members to get experience in logging from an earlier age so they can carry on a family business. Current laws say 16- and 17-year-old are forbidden from working in logging, with some limited exceptions for apprentices and student-learners. King and Risch's bill would change that.
Trump's Budget Slashes Climate Change Funding
National Public Radio - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

If there was any doubt over President Trump's views on climate change, those doubts evaporated with the unveiling of his proposed federal budget on Thursday. The budget would end programs to lower domestic greenhouse gas emissions, slash diplomatic efforts to slow climate change and cut scientific missions to study the climate.
Wilderness Society Decries Decline in Care for America’s Public Lands
Maine Environmental News - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

The fiscal year 2018 budget proposed by the Trump Administration would herald a new low for America’s shared public lands, says The Wilderness Society. Cam Witten, Government Relations and Budget Specialist at TWS, said, “This budget would decimate the very foundation of what makes America great: our parks, public lands, and historic leadership on conservation."
Maine Bill Would Take On Marine Debris
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

A proposal to try to address marine debris that results from commercial activities on and near the water will be the subject of a public hearing in the Maine State House before the Marine Resources Committee on March 22. Rep. Michael Devin's bill proposes to take on marine debris that results from businesses such as commercial fishing operations and aquaculture. The bill is conceptual in nature. It says it would use data from scientific publications to address debris while also attempting to protect commercial fishing and aquaculture operations.
Maine Governor Cites Concerns With Energy Efficiency Program
Maine Public - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Republican Gov. Paul LePage's office says he didn't sign a $29 million spending package because of concerns with allocations to an energy efficiency program. Spokeswoman Adrienne Bennett said LePage is deeply concerned that Maine now is 11th highest in the nation in energy costs and says that rank has worsened in the last year. Maine's costs are the lowest in New England. The supplemental budget for the fiscal year ending June became law Wednesday. It included a $664,157 increase for the Efficiency Maine Trust program, which is the state's independent administrator for energy efficiency programs.
Blog: Birding Adventures Offered at Bradford and Claybrook Mountain Camps
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, March 16, 2017 

For the first time, Igor and Karen Sikorski are offering a birding adventure this year at Bradford Camps in the great north woods, led by retired wildlife biologist Ron Joseph. Linda and I will be participating, for the third year in a row, in a birding weekend in May at Claybrook Mountain Lodge in New Portland, where Greg Drummond and Ron Joseph are our guides.
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