June 19, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Tuesday, June 18, 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
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.
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.
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.
Short Course on Island History, June
Event - Posted - Monday, June 10, 2019 

Malaga Island classroom session, at Harpswell Heritage Land Trust office, June 17, 6 pm; field trip, June 22, 11 am-3 pm. Eagle Island classroom session, at Harpswell Heritage Land Trust office, June 27, 6 pm; field trip June 29, 9:30 am-1:30 pm. Harpswell Heritage Land Trust members $60, non-members $70.
Maine Invasive Plants Field Guide
Publication - Sunday, June 9, 2019 

The Maine Natural Areas Program field guide covers 46 species of terrestrial and wetland invasive plants and is waterproof, portable, and ring-bound to allow for future additions. Each species account includes key identification characters, growth form, habitats invaded, control methods, similar native and non-native plant species, and current status of the plant in Maine. $18 for orders received by June 30.
Residents Day at Maine State Parks and Historic Sites, Jun 16
Event - Posted - Sunday, June 9, 2019 

Maine residents can take advantage of free day admission to Maine State Parks and Historic Sites. On Residents Day, Jun 16, vehicles with Maine license plates will have fees waived.
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News Items
Maine regulators order power companies to explain October storm response
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, December 19, 2017 

The Maine Public Utilities Commission Tuesday ordered Maine’s two major electric utilities to detail their response to the October wind storm, including the number of customer outages by day and the number of outside contractors and crews they retained to help restore power. In addition to responding to today’s order, CMP needs to file a separate document with the PUC detailing its costs to restore power.
Opinion: National parks belong to Americans; they should remain accessible to all
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, December 19, 2017 

In 2016, a record 3.3 million people visited Acadia for magical experiences like my family’s. More than 330 million recreation visits were recorded across the National Park System — the third consecutive year of record-breaking visits in Acadia and nationally. In October, the National Park Service proposed a fee increase at the 17 most popular parks. Visiting Acadia would cost $70 per vehicle, a jump of almost $50. The fee per person would, at minimum, double. At the same time the fee hikes are being proposed, the Trump administration’s proposed budget reduces the park service’s budget by the largest cut since World War II. Fee hikes are not the answer. These high entrance fees would reduce access to public lands. ~ Dr. Caitlin McDonough MacKenzie, postdoctoral Conservation Research Fellow, UMaine
Greenhouse to provide fresh vegetables at Bangor restaurant, regardless of the weather
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, December 19, 2017 

There’s the agricultural renaissance, the burgeoning farm-to-table movement and the willingness of farmers to grow all kinds of interesting produce. One thing that Maine can’t boast about, though, is the length of its growing season. But it’s a challenge that the team at the helm of Novio’s Bistro in Bangor believes they can handle, with a unique plan to make an end-run around the cold, hard reality of Maine weather.
Opinion: In America and beyond, the spirit behind public lands is at risk
Other - Tuesday, December 19, 2017 

The Guardian - Scientists are documenting an extinction crisis whose magnitude we are only beginning to grasp. Unless we take bold steps to protect land and ocean habitats for wildlife, half of the Earth’s species could go extinct by the end of this century. I fear that Teddy Roosevelt’s idea of conserving lands for public use, not private use, is at risk – both in the United States and around the world. The truth is: earth’s wild places cannot be saved by the hands of a few. The fate of our natural world depends on our collective ability to conserve our planet and share its bounties with one another. To slow the disappearance of natural areas, policy-makers must become evangelists for public lands. ~ Hansjörg Wyss
Column: In Maine counties losing population, the challenge is fiscal right-sizing
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, December 19, 2017 

The economy of Maine's Northeastern Rim—Piscataquis, Aroostook and Washington counties—has been contracting throughout the period of overall national recovery. This region’s economic challenge is about how to “right-size” its community development strategies. How is it going to organize and pay for the education of a school-age population facing a continuing decline? How are its health care providers going to plan and pay for the level of staffing needed to meet demand that will certainly continue to grow as its population continues to age? The best way to answer these questions revolves around investing in housing, transportation and broadband infrastructure designed to strengthen internal hubs where a local service economy can more effectively serve its surrounding populace. ~ Charles Lawton
Maine man who poached 29 pounds of baby eels worth $58,000 gets probation
Associated Press - Monday, December 18, 2017 

A Maine man will serve two years of probation and pay a $5,000 fine for the role he played in a baby eel trafficking scheme. Scott Willey, 49, of Steuben was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Portland after pleading guilty in June. He was charged with illegally harvesting baby eels in Virginia and South Carolina and selling them to a Maine dealer. Harvesting baby eels, which are called elvers, is legal only in Maine and one river in South Carolina. Authorities say Willey poached nearly 29 pounds of elvers, worth more than $58,000. Elvers are sold to Asian aquaculture companies and raised for food. By weight, they are one of the most valuable aquatic species in America.
11 ways to be warmer while outside this winter
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Monday, December 18, 2017 

The following are a few way to stay warmer while snowshoeing, skiing, skating or whatever else you like to do outdoors during the winter:
1. Drink water
2. Try mittens
3. Wear thick socks and foot warmers in your boots
4. Protect your face and neck
5. Choose your hat wisely
6. Invest in good longjohns (also known as a base layer)
7. Stay moving
8. Regulate your temperature with plenty of layers
9. Stay dry
10. Seek shelter
11. Try gaiters
Myth: Drinking alcohol will warm you up
Determined bobcat snacks on a coyote bait
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Monday, December 18, 2017 

Mike Grant, who lives in Augusta, said he’d captured a couple of game camera images in the back woods in 2016, and was amazed at what he saw. “Originally, we were baiting coyotes, but soon found out that wasn’t the only critter lurking around,” Grant wrote. “[This bobcat] had no problem decimating the roadkill deer we hung and I imagine if it was alive [the cat] could easily have taken it down.”
Charr Poster Draws Strong Support
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, December 18, 2017 

The Native Fish Coalition has created a great poster that will be placed on all of Maine’s Arctic charr waters. Existing in only 12 ponds, Maine’s native Arctic charr are the rarest freshwater salmonid east of the Rockies.
Bankruptcy payout is Great Northern Paper’s final check
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 18, 2017 

The Great Northern Paper Co.’s 2003 bankruptcy case is making its final payout to those who suffered worst from the closure of the paper dynasty — its workers. [video]
Workers from dead Maine paper mills call bankruptcy payouts ‘a total ripoff
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 18, 2017 

About 1,000 former Great Northern workers have begun receiving checks for “a small fraction” of the pensions, vacation and severance pay that they, in many cases, spent decades earning at the company’s East Millinocket and Millinocket paper mills. It’s a moment far more bitter than sweet for many, now at retirement age, who joined Great Northern as teens or 20-somethings expecting that mill work would provide them with an economically secure old age. Great Northern collapsed under the weight of changing times, new technologies, increasing international competition and a lack of reinvestment, filing for bankruptcy in 2003. One retired and disabled Millinocket millworker, Michael Manzo, said, “It is just a total ripoff. We spent years of our lives there."
Some people believe this wild Maine fungus has powerful healing benefits
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 18, 2017 

quickly gained popularity in recent years as news has spread about the mushroom’s potential health benefits. In response, Maine entrepreneurs are heading into the woods to harvest this local resource and get creative, using it to concoct everything from anti-aging skin cream to rich-bodied brews. Rich in antioxidants, chaga was used by the native people of the Northeast to create healing teas, and in folk medicine in other areas around the world. But scientific studies about how the contents in chaga specifically affect a person’s body are few, and many are inconclusive.
New version of pesticide rules set for public hearing in Portland
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 18, 2017 

A long-debated plan to regulate pesticide use in Portland heads to a public hearing Monday evening, but city councilors will likely postpone action and continue the debate because of more than a half-dozen proposed amendments. The ordinance recommended in October by the council’s Sustainability and Transportation Committee differs drastically from the one drafted by a task force appointed by Strimling. It’s aligned more closely with an ordinance adopted by South Portland in August 2016, which prioritizes organic lawn care, emphasizes public education and empowers a committee – not the city manager – to grant waivers for synthetic pesticides.
Westbrook ‘primed for significant growth,’ new economic leader says
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 18, 2017 

Daniel Stevenson has been at the center of an economic revival in Biddeford, from the removal of the city’s infamous trash incinerator to multimillion-dollar redevelopment projects in the city’s historic mill buildings and downtown. Now, after eight years, Westbrook is hoping he can tap the same kind of growth in another former mill city. Westbrook is trying to rebrand from an odorous mill town with a dirty river, to a home for high-tech business and a destination for water sports.
Opinion: Portland’s effort to reduce use of toxic pesticides is sorely needed
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 18, 2017 

If critics of the proposed ordinance to protect the community from the unnecessary use of toxic pesticides say that organic doesn’t work, they are challenging the underlying principles of soil management that have enabled the exponential growth of the organic agricultural sector, now a $50 billion industry and the fastest-growing part of the agricultural economy. The ordinance, with amendments that will be offered to ensure public oversight, transparency and an expedited effective date, should be adopted Monday so that Portland can ensure public health and environmental protection from pesticides as soon as possible. ~ Jay Feldman, Beyond Pesticides, and Heather Spalding, Maine Organic Farms and Gardeners Association
Opinion: Funding tax cuts with fossil fuel exploration a deadly formula
Kennebec Journal - Monday, December 18, 2017 

U.S. Sen. Susan Collins has been a supporter of action to address climate change, and she was the only Republican senator to vote against opening up the Arctic Refuge to drilling in both the budget reconciliation package and the tax bill. So it was disappointing to see her concerns regarding the refuge overridden by all the other politics around this tax bill. The fact remains that there is no issue that is more urgent or important than climate change, because of its potential for devastation. Encouraging drilling in the refuge is reflective and symbolic of our government’s reluctance to acknowledge its importance. We must not allow it! ~ Paul Potvin, M.D., Maine chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility
Letter: Lousy stewardship of Earth has led to plagues like ticks
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 18, 2017 

In the last few weeks we have pulled at least four deer ticks off my husband, and the snow has already fallen once. Living on doxycycline is becoming the norm these days. The epidemic of Lyme disease and overpopulation of ticks is getting worse. This is like a plague, although it is a vector-borne illness. We are sadly reaping what we have sown by not being good stewards of this planet. Because of greenhouse gases, etc., we see the scale has tipped to the point of catastrophe. We need action on climate change at all levels of our society. At the federal level, the Clean Power Plan is under threat of total repeal by the Trump administration. ~ Cheryl Farley, Manchester
UMaine wants farmers to think about growing in new weather
Associated Press - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

The University of Maine is inviting people who grow food for a living to a discussion of how changing weather patterns will impact their livelihoods. The university says it’s hosting a panel discussion about “farming in a new weather reality” on Jan. 9 during the Maine Agricultural Trades Show.
Opinion: We can’t bring extinct species back. It’s our duty to protect them now.
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

Maine is home to more than 400 species of birds — Atlantic puffins and roseate terns off our shores, scarlet tanagers, olive-sided flycatchers and rusty blackbirds in our woods, and common loons and belted kingfishers in our lakes. Our diverse bird populations, however, face major threats from unchecked development, a rapidly changing climate, and habitat loss and degradation. We must rely on federal protections like the Endangered Species Act as a critical lifeline to save our birds from extinction. But now the act faces attacks in Congress that threatens Maine’s birds and other wildlife. ~ Dr. Jeff Wells, Gardiner, author of “Birder’s Conservation Handbook” and co-author of “Maine’s Favorite Birds"
A Christmas tail: Europe deal could slow yuletide lobster sales
Associated Press - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

The Christmas season is typically a busy time of year for American seafood exporters, as the type of lobster that is native to North America is popular in some European countries around the holiday. But Canada and the EU brokered a deal this year that gets rid of tariffs on Canadian lobster exports to the 28-nation bloc. Canada, the world’s other major lobstering nation, is now at an economic advantage over the U.S. Trade rules could instead end up hurting American shippers during slower parts of the year, said Stephanie Nadeau, owner of The Lobster Company in Arundel.
Book review: In ‘Still Mill,’ Bucksport voices tell of papermaking’s end
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

On Dec. 4, 2014, the Bucksport Enterprise carried a grim headline: “Rest in peace papermaking? Bucksport entering post-papermaking era/Mill machines go idle today.” Though Maine’s paper industry had been troubled for decades, still, it was a cold, sudden end after more than 80 years. The laborers and their families now had to scramble for new ways to make a living. Patricia Ranzoni has gathered recollections from townsfolks who were connected with the mill and has synthesized them into a powerful book that documents the vitality of the place of work within the community.
Bill Needleman deals with rising water in Portland
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

Earlier this month, during the king tide, Bill Needleman led a walking tour of Portland’s Bayside neighborhood to show Portlanders what impact the highest tides of the year have on the city’s waterfront. We wanted to know more about king tides and Needleman’s role as the city’s first waterfront coordinator, a job that includes managing what happens when water starts pooling around the city’s storm drains as climate change literally increases sea levels.
The truth about your online shopping carbon footprint
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

Online shopping is way up and contributing to a vast increase in deliveries – the U.S. Postal Service delivered 3.1 billion packages in 2010 and 5.2 billion in 2016. But researchers say online shopping, despite the environmental cost of those deliveries, is no worse than “regular” retail shopping and may, under ideal conditions, actually have a smaller carbon footprint, even half the size.
Column: Capital relief
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

There’s a rather unheralded conservation property in the Augusta region, an 840-acre gem with more than five miles of developed trails that is just a delightful place for a hike. The beautiful acreage of Jamies Pond Wildlife Management Area spans the three towns of Hallowell, Manchester and Farmingdale. Owned and managed by the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, the central feature of the land is the pristine Jamies Pond. In the 1990s, money from the Land for Maine’s Future program along with assistance from the Kennebec Land Trust helped protect the land around the pond. ~ Carey Kish
Letter: Tax bill leaves no oats for sparrows
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, December 17, 2017 

Under the guise of a middle-class tax cut, the Senate passed a bill that adds a trillion dollars to the national debt, opens the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, will lead to increases in insurance premiums with a reduction in revenue to rural hospitals, and will result in future cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. In the late 1800s, theory of “trickle-down economics” was known as the “horse and sparrow theory.” If you feed a horse oats, some will pass through undigested. The horse gets the oats and the sparrows get the excrement. Of course, the “horse” actually extracts every last bit of the “oats,” leaving precious little for the “sparrows.” ~ Earl Coombs, Winslow
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