June 19, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 19, 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
Save Right Whales
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 19, 2019 

New England’s iconic whale is on the brink of extinction. A bill in Congress called Scientific Assistance for Very Endangered (“SAVE”) Right Whales could help this key species recover. ~ Conservation Law Foundation
Water: What is has to teach us, Jun 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 18, 2019 

Learn about fresh water ecosystems and new aquaculture operations in the MidCoast region. At Topsham Public Library, June 25, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Proposed Coyote Center, Jun 24
Event - Posted - Monday, June 17, 2019 

Biologist Geri Vistein will share an informative film about the future Coyote Center in Maine, followed by a discussion of Maine’s coyotes. At Lithgow Public Library, Augusta, June 24, 6:30 pm.
Teen Wilderness Expedition, July 23-25
Announcement - Sunday, June 16, 2019 

The Teen Wilderness Expedition is a 3-day, 2-night, all-inclusive adventure for 12-16 year olds at Little Lyford Lodge, July 23-25. Offered by Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District and Appalachian Mountain Club.
Maine State Museum hosts Bike Day, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Join the Maine State Museum, Bicycle Coalition of Maine and the Maine State Library in a free family event to commemorate the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote and learn about the benefits of safe, relaxed bike riding. At Maine State Museum, June 22, 10 am - 1 pm.
Woodland Management with Birds in Mind, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

A Forestry for Maine Birds workshop for landowners, foresters and loggers interested in learning how they can support Maine’s forest songbirds. At Somerset County Cooperative Extension office, Skowhegan, and on the adjacent Yankee Woodlot Demonstration Forest, June 22, 9 am - noon.
Hike Puzzle Mt., Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

A moderate to strenuous hike of 8.5 miles. Cross several exposed granite boulders and ledges offering views of the Sunday River ski area, Grafton Notch, and the Presidentials, June 22, pre-register. Sponsored by Appalachian Mountain Club.
Androscoggin River Canoe & Kayak River Race, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

This event is open to all to launch canoes, kayaks, paddle boards, (and more) into the Androscoggin River and complete one of three courses of varying length and challenge. At Festival Plaza, Auburn, June 22, 9 am, $15 for single paddler, $25 for a double, benefits Androscoggin Land Trust.
Plants of Corea Heath, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Join Jill Weber, botanist and co-author of The Plants of Acadia National Park, to learn about carnivorous plants, orchids, stunted trees and shrubs and cotton-grass. At Corea Heath, Goldsboro, June 22, 8:30 am. Sponsored by Downeast Audubon.
Maine Wildlife Park open house, Jun 21
Event - Posted - Friday, June 14, 2019 

The Maine Wildlife Park in Gray will hold an open house with free admission, June 21, 5-8 pm. Feeding times for moose, lynx, foxes, cougars, vultures and bears will be posted.
Call for a presidential primary debate on climate change
Action Alert - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez has rejected a presidential primary debate on climate change. 15 Democratic presidential candidates have joined the call. So can you. ~ CREDO Action
Trekking through Time
Announcement - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

From June through October, Lakes Environmental Association, Loon Echo Land Trust, Greater Lovell Land Trust, Upper Saco Valley Land Trust, and Western Foothills Land Trust will host the Trekking through Time Series. Once a month throughout the summer and early fall, each organization will host a historical tour of one of its conservation properties.
Help document impact on shell middens, Jun 18
Announcement - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 

Many cultural artifacts of Maine's first coastal residents are preserved in shell middens, but these sites are disappearing as sea levels rise, collectors dig into the middens, and visitors walk on them. Maine Midden Minders is developing a database of erosion conditions at middens. Volunteer training at Coastal Rivers’ Education Center, Damariscotta, June 18, 3-7 pm.
“Dog-Friendly Hikes in Maine” book launch, Jun 18
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 

Book signing and presentation for “Dog-Friendly Hikes in Maine” by Aislinn Sarnacki, which contains detailed descriptions and maps of 35 hikes across Maine that are ideal for dogs and their owners. At Epic Sports, Bangor, June 18, 5-7:30 pm.
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News Items
A privy problem: Maine group races to replace outhouses on Appalachian Trail
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

Launched in 2013, the plan is to replace all 42 privies the Maine Appalachian Trail Club maintains along the AT in Maine with new, more sustainable and environmentally friendly privies. The reason is simple: they’re filling up and falling apart.
Where the Candidates Stand on Climate Change
Free Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

At a forum in Portland on Tuesday, sponsored by the Environmental & Energy Technology Council of Maine (E2Tech), First District Congresswoman Chellie Pingree said climate change is real and caused by human activity. Republican Mark Holbrook, who is challenging Pingree, would not directly say where he stood on climate change or the Clean Power Plan. Second District Congressman Bruce Poliquin admits climate change is happening, but is skeptical that humans are causing it. Poliquin voted to dismantle the Clean Power Plan. Pingree voted to preserve it. Poliquin’s opponent, Democrat Emily Cain, supports the EPA rules. While presidential candidate Democrat Hillary Clinton believes that global warming is caused by greenhouse gas emissions and has resolved to invest in more non-carbon-emitting renewable energy technology, Republican Donald Trump has stated that “the concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
Column: Unusual bird species pop up in autumn
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

All summer, nothing strange happens out in the backyard. Suddenly, when autumn arrives, so do some unusual birds. Fox sparrows breed in the north woods and on many mountain tops. Some guide books and websites suggest they don’t breed in Maine, but I assure you they do. White-crowned sparrows are sneaking through Maine right now. They don’t nest here. Lark sparrows are rare visitors to Maine feeders. Dickcissels look like colorful house sparrows, though they are more closely related to cardinals. Identifying an orange-crowned warbler is a humorous exercise, because they have virtually no field marks. Two robin-like birds are possible at feeders. The Townsend’s solitaire and the varied thrush. ~ Bob Duchesne
Private Wells in Northeast Coming Up Empty Amid Drought
Associated Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

Private wells across the Northeastern United States are drying up in the face of a punishing drought that has lasted for much of the summer. The drought, the worst seen in more than a decade, has been devastating to many farmers, has meant water restrictions in many places and is threatening to disrupt the region's fall foliage season that is so important to the tourism industry. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says about 2.3 million people, or 20 percent of the New England population, get their water from private wells.
New Hiking Path Connects Unity to Belfast
Free Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

The Hills to Sea Route is a new footpath that winds across Waldo County for 44 miles from Unity to Belfast. The route is a combination of well-established trails linked by new sections established across private lands. It requires no special equipment. There are no entrance fees, no peaks to bag, no rushing rivers to cross, no ziplines or guided tours, no uniformed anybody to help or hinder your passage. Instead, it’s the kind of hiking trail found in Ireland and Wales, where long walks have become a national pastime.
Sea gulls are dying in Portland, but officials don’t know why
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

Three dozen juvenile herring gulls have turned up dead in Portland’s Deering Oaks park in less than a month, and city and state officials don’t yet know why. Three of the ocean birds have been sent to the National Wildlife Disease Lab in Wisconsin for testing. Those results are expected to be returned in the next seven to 10 days, but Judy Camuso, a wildlife biologist for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, said initial necropsies on several birds have ruled out the possibility that the birds were poisoned.
Eye on Augusta: LePage Administration Resurrects Plan to Weaken Mining Rules
Free Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

No metals have been mined in Maine since 1977, according to the Maine Geological Survey, but the LePage administration is hoping to revive the dormant industry if he can elect enough allies to the Legislature this November. Last Thursday, Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) unveiled its third effort to weaken mining rules before a meeting of the Board of Environmental Protection, which will review the proposal over the next couple months before making recommendations to the Legislature when it returns to Augusta in January. The rules come as a result of a massive lobbying effort by the Canadian corporation J.D. Irving, which brought forward a bill in 2012 to direct the DEP to rewrite Maine’s mining standards to aid in the development of a mine to extract precious metallic minerals on Bald Mountain in Aroostook County.
Column: Ends and Means
Free Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

The proclamation last week by President Obama of the new Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument in New England protected 4,913 square miles of the Atlantic Ocean at the southern edge of Georges Bank from human activities with a stroke of the pen. It is the first national monument to be declared in the ocean; the monument encompasses three deep submarine canyons and four seamounts that rise more than 7,000 feet above the ocean floor. ~ Melissa Waterman
USF&W Director issues provocative call to action
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

A provocative call-to-action by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe is getting a lot of attention across the nation. Ashe: “Rome burns…prairies are in crisis…Asian carp assault the Great Lakes…Burmese pythons strangle the Everglades…Elephants, rhinos, and other wildlife are decimated by a global epidemic of trafficking…state and federal refuges in California (anchors of the Pacific Flyway) are starved of water…mule deer are disappearing from large expanses in the west…every native trout species is imperiled…grassland birds are declining precipitously…and on, and on...Our ability to conserve and protect our public lands and native wildlife is being steadily undercut by politicians hostile to the very idea of public trust."
Family renews effort to develop sprawling site on South Portland waterfront
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

The Cacoulidis family has resumed efforts to redevelop about 40 acres of prime waterfront where 15 years ago patriarch John Cacoulidis proposed building a gasp-inducing $900 million hotel and convention center that included a cable-car system across Portland Harbor. The sprawling former shipbuilding site on Spring Point has been cleared of brush and resurveyed in recent weeks, and four industrial buildings on the property are being renovated and offered for lease.
Opinion: Resist the urge to fast-track the Narrow Gauge through Gray Meadow
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 22, 2016 

The article “Narrow Gauge Railroad’s move to Gray on touchy track” failed to address several important concerns. I admire the project proponents’ ambitious effort to showcase this trolley line and the Narrow Gauge Railroad. However, the project’s proposed location is the Gray Meadow, a highly valuable natural resource. The meadow a major floodwater holding area. It provides breeding habitat for bitterns, rails, waterfowl and songbirds. It also includes habitat for a state-designated endangered species (the New England cottontail rabbit) and may contain habitat for another (the least bittern). It’s easy to get caught up in the nostalgia of the historic trolley line, and it’s understandable to want to bring a piece of it back to its original route. However, we now know a lot of science that we didn’t know when the line was built. ~ Karen Herold, Cumberland
Blog: Maine Beer Company releases beer commemorating the North Woods Monument
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

Maine Beer Company of Freeport announced the release of Woods and Waters IPA, brewed to commemorate the the creation of the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. The North Woods Monument was created on Aug. 24 after 87,562 acres of land previously owned by Burt’s Bees entrepreneur Roxanne Quimby was signed over to the U.S. Department of the Interior and National Park Service.
Turbine critics weigh in on proposed rules for future wind power development
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

As the state considers a new set of regulations for future wind power projects, Mainers worried about how turbines might affect their scenery and property values have more opportunity to air concerns and offer potential solutions. The Department of Environmental Protection’s “pre-rulemaking draft” of regulations address scenic character; public safety; requirements to prove tangible economic and environmental benefits of a development; and decommissioning or demolition of turbines in the event the company that operates them goes bankrupt or abandons them. About 30 people, many of them involved in various wind industry opposition and watchdog groups, attended Wednesday’s session. Their suggestions ranged from minor word changes to adding more details about what potential developers are required to prove.
Camden backs effort for 9-mile recreational trail
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

A proposal to create a four-season trail that would run from the Camden Snow Bowl to the two ponds that serve as the region’s water supplies received a boost Tuesday from the town. The Camden Select Board voted unanimously Tuesday night to direct the staff to work with the Coastal Mountains Land Trust to transfer two town-owned properties on Ragged Mountain to the land trust. The parcels would help create the proposed 9-mile trail.
Moose on the loose: Hunters to kick off season in Maine
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

Early Monday morning, this year’s first group of moose hunters will head into the woods hoping for the best. They will have Mother Nature on their side. Temperatures in northern Maine, where hunters will be heading afield, will drop into the 30s on Sunday night and will only reach the upper 50s on Monday. Higher temperatures tend to discourage moose from moving as much during daylight hours. A total of 2,140 permits have been allotted:
- Sept. 26-Oct. 1: 720 bull permits allocated in 8 wildlife districts in northern Maine
- Oct. 10-15: 1,095 bull permits spread over 19 wildlife districts
- Oct. 24-29: 220 cow permits in 5 wildlife districts
- Oct. 31-Nov. 26, excluding Sundays: 105 “any-moose” permits in 10 wildlife districts
US, Canada Broker Agreement to Share Dwindling Cod Fishing
Associated Press - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The United States and Canada have brokered a deal to share what's left of the dwindling North American cod fishing business in the Atlantic next year. Both countries fish for cod, an important food fish that has declined in population following overfishing and warming ocean temperatures. The two fisheries overlap in the eastern reaches of Georges Bank, an important fishing area located off of New England. The countries have agreed to set the total allowable catch at 730 metric tons next year. The U.S. will be allowed to take 146 metric tons and Canada will get the rest.
Cruise ship visits MDI at end of historic Northwest Passage voyage
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The recent voyage of the Crystal Serenity through the Arctic Ocean’s Northwest Passage was notable not only because it involved the largest cruise ship ever to take that route but also for what passengers failed to see: choking floes of sea ice. Frequent cruiser Fred Holden said, “The trip wasn’t quite what I expected. Because of global warming this year, the ice has melted so much that actually we had to look for ice rather than try to avoid it.” The Crystal Serenity, a 790-foot ship that can carry more than 1,000 passengers and 500 crew, dropped anchor in Frenchman Bay during the final leg of its journey, which began in Seward, Alaska on Aug. 16.
Ashland heating pellet mill scores UMFK biomass deal
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

Ashland-based Northeast Pellets has won a new contract with the University of Maine Fort Kent that’s set to boost employment and sales at the company following a challenging heating season. Northeast Pellets and UMFK have signed a one-year contract for the firm to supply the university with biomass heating pellets, with the potential for two annual extensions.
Editorial: Maine workers deserve better than a defeatist governor
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

Gov. Paul LePage’s reaction to the potential loss of hundreds of jobs in Maine is baffling. The governor almost bragged this week that he was right when he spoke earlier this year about 900 jobs leaving the state. “There’s nothing I can do about it,” he told the radio talk show hosts Tuesday. This is a stunningly disappointing and defeatist statement from someone who ran, twice, on a platform of job creation. It also isn’t true. Governors and state economic development officials routinely work with companies to see what, if anything, the state can do to alleviate job losses, spur growth or stop a potential relocation. Just last month, LePage took credit for the expansion of St. Croix Tissue in Baileyville.
Oil spill response crew says its boat left Portland Harbor because pipeline couldn’t afford it
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The Maine Responder, a pollution control vessel long stationed in Portland Harbor, was taken out of service last month in part because the company that pumps oil to Montreal couldn’t pay for its service, the ship’s crew recently told the U.S. government. For decades, the Portland Montreal Pipe Line has carried oil from tanker ships north to refineries in Montreal. But in recent years the pipeline’s flow has slowed to a trickle, as Canadian oil markets have shifted to favor domestic production. It dried up completely in the first five months of this year.
There’s a lot more going on in Maine’s forests than you know about
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The Pine Tree Camp on North Pond in Rome hosted a fantastic SWOAM/Maine Tree Farm Forestry Field Day on September 10, and I was very glad I decided to attend. I thought I knew a lot about what’s going on in our forests, including the programs and projects currently underway, but boy, did I learn a lot at this great event, the 62nd annual forestry field day.
Karl Meltzer unseats Scott Jurek as fastest supported AT hiker
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

Atlanta Journal-Constitution - Karl Meltzer ran and hiked the 2,190-mile length of the Appalachian Trail in 45 days, 22 hours and 38 minutes, the fastest known time for a supported race. He reached Springer Mountain in North Georgia, the southern terminus of the trail, at 3:38 a.m. Sunday. Last summer Scott Jurek notched a fastest-ever south-to-north through-hike of 46 days, 8 hours, 7 minutes. In 2015 Heather “Anish” Anderson, a Seattle woman nicknamed “The Ghost,” completed the hike in 54 days, 7 hours, and 48 minutes, with no support but her own gumption.
North Woods monument ‘an educational opportunity’ for children, residents say
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument needs a management plan, and Bruce Cox said he was happy to offer some ideas for it. Cox told a focus group of fellow Katahdin region residents on Tuesday at Medway Middle School, “I raised two daughters in this town. We have an opportunity here. It is a work in progress to develop this, but [the monument] is also an environmental science lab that these kids can participate in. I think we can develop some businesses around it in Medway, East Millinocket and Millinocket, and I think we can do it together.” Cox’s ideas were among dozens of thoughts collected by National Park Service officials during a listening session.
Ambitious plan would transform 10 acres of Portland waterfront
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

A former railroad foundry on Portland’s eastern waterfront would be transformed into a shiny high-end neighborhood with six blocks of housing, shops, restaurants, hotel rooms and marina slips under an ambitious and long-awaited redevelopment plan submitted by local developers. The scale of the development, which features a mix of glass-walled buildings and historic brick structures and is estimated to cost about $250 million, makes it one of the most ambitious projects ever proposed in Maine’s largest city.
Letter: Drought exposes the flaw in selling Maine’s water to Nestle
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 21, 2016 

The recent article about the town of York buying a million gallons of water a day from a neighboring community brings Maine’s troubling relationship with water bottlers front and center. Poland Spring buys an average of 110 million gallons of water a year from the Fryeburg Water Co. Think about that. Let Nestle go and rake in millions with its other thousands of products. They’ll be just fine without corporatizing Maine’s water into something called “Poland Spring” water. ~ Matt Power, Portland
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