July 16, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Tuesday, July 16, 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
‘Acadia Files’ author Coppens, Jul 23
Event - Posted - Tuesday, July 16, 2019 

Author Katie Coppens will conduct fun science experiments with kids of all ages. At Turner Public Library, July 23, 2 pm. Each volume of “The Acadia Files” helps young readers learn about the scientific method in fun and innovative ways by following the adventures of Acadia, a young scientist.
Help Stamp Money Out of Politics
Action Alert - Monday, July 15, 2019 

The flow of cash into the pockets of politicians from lobbyists, oil and gas companies, and billionaires bent on protecting their wealth is the biggest barrier to our government's taking action on climate change, and it is up to us to put a stop to it. That is why we're asking you to join the movement protesting Big Money's death grip on our future by rubber-stamping our cash with the message "Stamp Money Out of Politics." ~ Ben & Jerry
Tell Your Representative: Invest in Clean Energy and Climate Action
Action Alert - Monday, July 15, 2019 

Congress must update and extend vital tax credits in four key green technology areas needed to meet our climate goals — electric vehicles, offshore wind, electric grid scale storage, and building efficiency. Without these updated credits, clean energy innovation could stall and our planet will be driven even closer to the brink of climate catastrophe. ~ Natural Resources Defense Council Action Fund
Hearing on CMP billing errors, service shortcomings, rate hikes, Jul 22
Action Alert - Monday, July 15, 2019 

Maine Public Utilities Commission public witness hearing concerning Central Maine Power’s request to increase residential rates by over 10%, and CMP billing errors and poor customer service. At PUC, Hallowell, July 22, 6 pm.
Greenhorns summer workshops
Event - Posted - Monday, July 15, 2019 

Hear from historians, restoration ecologists, entomologists, fishermen, foresters and master craftsmen, on a wide range of topics at the intersection of the human and non-human world. Greenhorns, in Pembroke, works to create a welcoming culture for new entrants in sustainable agriculture.
Crystal Spring Farm Bee Tour, Jul 21
Event - Posted - Sunday, July 14, 2019 

Beekeeper Ken Faulkner will explain the importance of honeybees, hive dynamics, beekeeping, honeybee history, and more. At Crystal Spring Farmers’ Market parking area, Brunswick, July 21, 10 am, free. Sponsored by Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust.
Kayak to Woodward Point, Jul 21
Event - Posted - Sunday, July 14, 2019 

Check out newly protected Woodward Point on the New Meadows River in Brunswick from the water. July 21, 2 pm, pre-register. Sponsored by Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust and Maine Coast Heritage Trust.
Climate Convergence Conference, Jul 20
Event - Posted - Saturday, July 13, 2019 

Explore the roots of science denial and change the nature of the public discourse regarding Climate Change. At George Stevens Academy, Blue Hill, July 20.
Loon counters needed, Jul 20
Announcement - Saturday, July 13, 2019 

Each year more than a thousand volunteer counters fan out across Maine’s lakes to help track the status of the state’s loon population. Volunteer counters are needed on a number of Hancock County lakes and ponds, July 20, 7-7:30 am.
Traveling the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Jul 19
Event - Posted - Friday, July 12, 2019 

Nicole Grohoski, GIS Specialist, Cartographer, and State Representative for District 132 will share adventures from completing the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. At Gordon’s Wharf, Sullivan, July 19, 7 pm. Sponsored by Friends of Taunton Bay and Frenchman Bay Conservancy.
Yoga on the Brunswick Mall, thru Sep 6
Event - Posted - Friday, July 12, 2019 

Classes led by Sundara Yoga’s qualified instructors. At Brunswick Town Mall lawn in front of the gazebo, every Friday (weather permitting), July 19 - September 6, 7:30 – 8:30 am, free.
Hearing on CMP billing errors, service shortcomings, rate hikes, Jul 18
Action Alert - Thursday, July 11, 2019 

Maine Public Utilities Commission public witness hearing concerning Central Maine Power’s request to increase residential rates by over 10%, and CMP billing errors and poor customer service. At UMaine at Farmington, July 18, 6 pm.
Forestry for Maine Birds, Jul 17
Event - Posted - Wednesday, July 10, 2019 

Learn how to improve habitat for priority forest birds and a variety of other wildlife species; take care of your woodland; work with other forest management goals; and enhance the value and enjoyment of Maine woodlands. At Mt. Vernon Community Center, July 17, 9:30 am - 2 pm.
Revisioning the Earth, Jul 16
Event - Posted - Tuesday, July 9, 2019 

Dana Sawyer, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Religion at the Maine College of Art, will speak about Revisioning the Earth. At Harpswell Heritage Land Trust Annual Meeting, Orr’s Island Schoolhouse, July 16, 6:30 pm.
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News Items
Keep an Eye Out for This Dangerous Plant in Maine
Other - Monday, July 1, 2019 

B98.5 FM - Heracleum mantegazzianum, better known as Giant Hogweed, and part of the carrot family, is an invasive plant that appears sporadically throughout the state and looks similar to queen-Anne's-lace. Do not touch the plant if possible. If you choose to remove the plant from your property be sure to wear gloves, long sleeves, long pants, and eye protection. In the event you come into contact with Giant Hogweed be sure to thoroughly wash the exposed the area and stay out of the sun for 48 hours. The rash from this plant isn't an ordinary rash. The sap from the plant removes your skin's natural protection from harmful UV rays thus the importance of staying out of the sun. Exposure runs the risk of third-degree burns and extremely painful blisters that can appear up to 20 hours after contact.
2019 Summary of Key Environmental Legislation in Maine
Pierce Atwood - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Pierce Atwood’s Environmental and Land Use Practice Groups provide a summary of key environmental legislation from the 129th Maine Legislature’s First Regular Session, which adjourned sine die, on June 20, 2019.
Central Maine Power seeking approval for rate hike
Portland Press Herald - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Central Maine Power customers will be given the chance to weigh in on a proposed rate hike during a series of public hearings set to begin this month. In a news release circulated to legislative leaders Monday, the company said that it is seeking approval from the Maine Public Utilities Commission for an increase in electric distribution rates of approximately $46.5 million, or a 10.65 percent hike, in delivery rates for residential customers.
Lewiston nonprofit receives lead poisoning prevention grant
Sun Journal - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Healthy Androscoggin is one of nine organizations nationwide to receive a 2019 Lead Poisoning Preventing Grant. The grant offers a “$25,000 cash award to the nonprofit, along with 18 months of coaching and support, access to national experts, engagement in a peer-learning network and a customized analysis calculating the cost of childhood lead exposure and the economic benefits of interventions.” Lewiston and Auburn still have the “first and third-highest numbers of Maine children under the age of 3 years who are poisoned by lead, respectively.” The grant also comes eight months after Healthy Androscoggin received a $120,000 lead prevention grant from the EPA.
Group Forms To Support Proposed Belfast Salmon Farm
Maine Public - Monday, July 1, 2019 

A group has recently launched to advocate for a controversial proposed land-based salmon farm in Belfast. The residents, calling themselves “The Fish Are Okay,” formed a few months ago, according to Trudy Miller, one of the founding members. Miller says it came as a response to months of local opposition to the project. “Local Citizens for Smart Growth” has fought the proposed farm over concerns about its effect on the environment and water supply. Miller says her group formed to show public support for the project, which they say could boost the area’s economy while still protecting the environment.
Maine Game Wardens warming up for charity softball game
WCSH-TV6 - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Next month, Maine Game Wardens and New Hampshire Conservation Officers will square off in the 'North Woods Throwdown' to raise money for the Make-a-Wish foundation on August 3 at Hadlock Field in Portland.
Maine Attorney General Joins Lawsuit to Force EPA to Issue Rule on Toxic Asbestos
Maine Government News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Attorney General Aaron M. Frey today joined coalition of Attorneys General in filing a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's failure to initiate rulemaking to help regulate asbestos. "Our request to the EPA in January was simple: follow the law by creating a rule to collect data on the importation and use of asbestos," said Frey. "The rule would give the EPA the information they need to properly regulate asbestos and, in doing so, save lives." Asbestos is a carcinogen that takes 15,000 lives per year. The EPA denied the states' petition in April.
Fort Williams Visitors Must Now Pay To Park
Associated Press - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Parking fees at Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth went into effect Monday. The park is home to the much-loved and much-photographed Portland Head Light. It now costs $2 an hour to park, with a two-hour minimum. A full day pass costs $10 and a season pass costs $15. Residents of Cape Elizabeth can park for free if they display a current Recycling Center Permit. Fees will be charged from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily from May 1 to Nov. 1. Passes can be purchased by credit card only at meters in the park.
Expansion of Bowdoin’s Schiller Coastal Studies Center will allow students to better study oceans, climate change
Times Record - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Construction is underway on a multi-million dollar expansion of Bowdoin’s Schiller Coastal Studies Center, a move which director David Carlon said will allow the college to “change the way Bowdoin can teach students” and get coastal communities more involved in conversations about a rapidly changing ocean. The 118-acre facility is about 13 miles from Bowdoin’s campus and “will offer an even wider range of possibilities for students and researchers studying the ocean and the environment.”
Mainers Feeding Mainers program again receives state funding
Sun Journal - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Gov. Janet Mills signed a measure Friday to continue the $1 million-a-year program run by the Good Shepherd Food Bank that buys products from local farms to distribute to needy residents. The program is overseen by the Good Shepherd Food Bank, which works with more than 70 farms across the state to buy fresh, local food for hunger relief efforts throughout Maine. Last year, it distributed more than 2 million pounds of local food and pumped $750,000 into the state’s farms.
Bills to boost Maine farms and feed the hungry become law
Portland Press Herald - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Maine farms will be able to sell more of their products to local school districts and food pantries under two pieces of legislation signed into law by Gov. Janet Mills. One measure would provide matching funds for school districts to purchase produce from Maine farms. The bill also creates a new position with the Maine Department of Education that will help schools coordinate those purchases and train local staff in how to participate. “This bill will help Maine farmers find buyers for their produce, and help Maine students have greater access to fresh, healthy meals,” said state Sen. Eloise Vitelli, D-Arrowsic, the bill’s primary sponsor.
It’s time to enter Maine’s any-deer permit lottery
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife biologists have proposed a 19.6 percent reduction in the number of any-deer permits they will distribute. Any-deer permits, also widely referred to as “doe permits,” allow a hunter to shoot an antlerless deer during the hunting seasons. In general, those without any-deer permits are restricted to shooting bucks. The state allocates those permits via a free-to-enter lottery each year. The entry deadline is 11:59 p.m. Aug. 15. The lottery is set for Sept. 6. Recent any-deer permit allocations:
— 2019: 68,145 (proposed)
— 2018: 84,745
— 2017: 66,050
— 2016: 45,755
— 2015: 28,770
New Gloucester board backs land acquisition
Sun Journal - Monday, July 1, 2019 

New Gloucester Selectmen on Monday night unanimously endorsed an effort by the Gray-New Gloucester Little League and the Royal River Conservation Trust to secure an option on 180 acres connecting the Lower Village to the Little League fields on Route 231. The acreage includes an area once cleared for the 18th century Blockhouse and a section of the historic Portland-Lewiston Interurban electric railroad. Selectmen conveyed seven foreclosed properties that are swampy nearby to help develop the project, which would include traditional hunting and fishing access, ball fields and and parking. So far, 3,300 acres in the Royal River Watershed have been protected.
20 Years Later: A River Reborn
Natural Resources Council of Maine - Monday, July 1, 2019 

On July 1, 1999, Maine made history as the Edwards Dam in Augusta was breached so that the Kennebec River could flow freely for the first time since 1837. The Edwards Dam blocked native sea-run fish from their spawning habitat for more than 160 years. But thanks to years of work by NRCM, American Rivers, Atlantic Salmon Federation, Trout Unlimited & its Kennebec Valley chapter, and others, the Kennebec has been reborn. Tens of millions of sea-run fish have traveled up the river in the past two decades. Osprey, bald eagles, sturgeon, and other wildlife now flourish.
Disentangling the Renewable Energy Scam
Other - Monday, July 1, 2019 

American Thinker - The solar energy industry is telling its pals in Congress that it is willing the lose most of its subsidies. The current subsidy for solar is 30% of the construction cost. To that, an additional 10% subsidy is available due to special fast depreciation for solar energy plants. The real reason the solar people are happy with a lower subsidy is that the 30% investment tax credit is not their most important subsidy. The real subsidy is better hidden. It is is rooted in renewable portfolio requirements in about 30 states. The experts, like James Hansen and Michael Shellenberger, who really believe in global warming, are loudly saying the solution is nuclear, not wind or solar. It's time to get rid of the subsidies and quotas and put these scammers out of business. ~ Norman Rogers
A cemetery cut down trees to make room for more graves. The clear cut upset some locals.
York County Coast Star - Monday, July 1, 2019 

A timber harvesting operation at Evergreen Cemetery on Summer Street has upset many neighbors to the cemetery and townspeople who have family buried there, but cemetery board members say the work has been done to address safety concerns and plan for the future. In February, a timber harvester clear-cut roughly 4.5 acres of large white pine trees. The cemetery superintendent, Carl Walton, told the board there were burial sites he couldn’t use due to roots from the trees being in the way. Large limbs, along with the tops of the white pines were snapping off and landing on neighboring property and on the graves. “We’ve been working on this for four years,” said cemetery board member Wayne Berry.
Column: India’s late monsoon rains a sign of our changing climate
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

In the record 2003 heatwave in Europe, when temperatures were slightly lower than they have been in northern India this month, an estimated 35,000 to 70,000 people died. How many premature deaths from heat were there really in India this month? Probably tens of thousands. The wildfires have already started again in Canada and California, with predictions that they may be even worse than last year. And Europe is experiencing a heat wave bringing temperatures above 104 degrees Fahrenheit to much of the continent. Nobody gets off free. ~ Gwynne Dye
Acadia National Park Re-opens Visitor Center
Associated Press - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Acadia National Park has reopened its visitor center for the season. The facility in Hulls Cove has opened after months of renovations. Upgrades include new carpet, a family restroom and a separate entrance to the park store. Other additions include several oversized maps, new exhibits and a public display of pieces from the Acadia Artist-in-Residence program. Still, the center has limited handicapped accessible parking. Park officials say they have removed a small theater that screened an orientation film on the park. Park entrance fees and contributions from the park store helped fund the renovations.
Maine police officers climb Katahdin to honor Ben Campbell and other fallen officers
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Two Augusta police officers climbed Katahdin over the weekend to honor those officers who have fallen in the line of duty. Sgt. Tori Tracy and Officer Carly Wiggin have made the memorial climb for the past three years, the Augusta Police Department said. This year, the pair carried a rock inscribed in honor of Ben Campbell, a Maine State Police detective who died April 3 in a bizarre accident when a flying logging-truck wheel struck him on the side of Interstate 95 in Hamden. They also carried to the top of Maine’s tallest mountain another rock in memory of a friend of Wiggin who died not long after Campbell.
Maine island community launches composting program to save money on shipping trash
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Officials on Vinalhaven say that a communitywide composting program will not only help deliver nutrients to the island’s poor soil, but it will actually save the town money by reducing the amount of solid waste shipped off the island. The town was awarded a $20,000 grant from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection in June to turn a small composting project started last fall into an islandwide composting service.
Grassroots duel over fish farm has some Belfast residents feeling like ‘loonies’
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Until recently, the battle for public opinion about Nordic Aquafarms’ proposed $500 million land-based salmon farm in Belfast has seemed dominated by opponents, some of whom have not been afraid to speak up at informational meetings, initiate a lawsuit against the city or make legal challenges to Nordic’s permit applications. Lately, though, midcoast residents who feel positively about the project have begun to make their voices heard. “A lot of us who weren’t so dead-set against it started talking to each other,” Anne Saggese, an organizing member of The Fish Are Okay, said recently.
Letter: Climate denial an impeachable offense
Bangor Daily News - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Maine is not immune from sea level rise. Think of the costs to property owners, businesses, as well as state and local tax revenues. A president’s major responsibility is to protect and defend our country from all threats. I believe the current president’s unrelenting denial of climate change is an impeachable offense. Examples that increase the risks of climate change include his rollback of programs for decreasing emissions, data collection and community preparation, his decision to withdrawal from international efforts such as the Paris Climate agreement as well as his active promotion of fossil fuel production. Contact your representatives. ~ Pam Person, Orland
Letter: Renewable-energy standards bill deserves Collins’ co-sponsorship
Portland Press Herald - Monday, July 1, 2019 

With the passage of recent Maine renewable-energy bills, Maine will become a leader in renewable energy. The problem is, other states that have lagged behind in developing renewable-energy infrastructure are still able to pollute the air that Mainers breathe. A new national renewable-electricity standard is being introduced by Sen. Tom Udall of New Mexico. The bill would require every state to increase annual sales of electricity from renewable sources by at least the federal standard. Sen. Udall’s renewable-electricity standard bill holds other states accountable, while greatly benefiting Maine. Sen. Collins should co-sponsor the bill to show bipartisan support for our renewable-energy future. ~ Marty Fox, Wiscasset
Letter: Good editorial – but it’s just ‘Katahdin’
Portland Press Herald - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Two recent rescues prompted the excellent editorial (“Our View: Give Mount Katahdin the respect it requires,” June 26). As someone who has hiked more than half of Katahdin’s 81 routes, I say “Amen” to respect. In his foreword to the definitive Katahdin guidebook, Steve Clark says: “Katahdin is a magical name. It should stand by itself in language as it does in nature. The translation of Katahdin is ‘greatest mountain.’" So the preface 'Mount' or 'Mt.' is redundant. ~ Christopher P. O’Neil, Portland
Letter: CMP project bad for environment
Morning Sentinel - Monday, July 1, 2019 

Saying that Central Maine Power’s proposed 145-mile, high-voltage New England Clean Energy Connect transmission line is a way to combat climate change is an egregious example of green washing. About 53 miles of the transmission line route would run through undeveloped forests in the North Woods. The NECEC project would replace valuable Maine trees with 100-foot transmission towers that would be visible from many beloved Maine vantage points. CMP proposes clearing more vegetation and potentially increasing development within existing corridors. Such activities would disrupt the very ecosystems that we need to protect to save our planet from “the dual threat of climate chaos and extinction catastrophe." ~ Linda Woods, Waterville

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