September 22, 2019  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Maine Outdoor Film Festival, Sep 29
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 22, 2019 

Opera House Arts hosts the Maine Outdoor Film Festival. At Stonington Ball Field, September 29, after sunset at approximately 8 pm, free but suggested $5 donation in support of Loon Echo Land Trust.
Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Saturday, September 21, 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
Birds of Prey, Sep 28
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 21, 2019 

Learn about the lives of Maine’s raptors. At L.C. Bates Museum, Hinckley, September 28, 1-2 pm.
Woodward Point Opening Celebration, Sep 28
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 21, 2019 

The Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust will celebrate the opening of the new Woodward Point Preserve in Brunswick, September 28, 1 pm
National Public Lands Day, Sep 28
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 21, 2019 

National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest single-day volunteer effort. A signature event of the National Environmental Education Foundation, it promotes both popular enjoyment and volunteer conservation of public lands. September 28.
People of a Feather, Sep 27
Event - Posted - Friday, September 20, 2019 

This film explores the impact of the development of hydropower on the traditional life of the Inuits in Canada’s Hudson Bay. A discussion addressing Central Maine Power’s transmission line through Western Maine and its impacts will follow. At 114 Main St, Kennebunk, September 27, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Sierra Club Maine.
Learn about environmentally-friendly lawn care, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 19, 2019 

How to create a more resilient, beautiful lawn, without relying on chemical fertilizers or weed and bug killers. At Yarmouth Water District, September 26, 6 pm, pre-register.
Wilderness and Spirit, A Mountain Called Katahdin, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 19, 2019 

Film screening and discussion with filmmaker Huey (James Coleman). At Maine Historical Society, Portland,, September 26, 6-8 pm.
Cobbosseecontee Stream fish, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 19, 2019 

Stephen Brooke facilitates a discussion about restoring the native sea run fish to Cobbossee stream. At Gardiner Public Library, September 26, 6:30 pm.
LUPC to Hold Public Meeting on Approved Fish River Lakes Concept Plan, Sep 25
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 18, 2019 

The Maine Land Use Planning Commission staff will hold an open house and public meeting regarding the Fish River Chain of Lakes Concept Plan. At Caribou Inn and Convention Center, September 25, Open House 6 pm; Public Meeting 6:30 pm.
Phenology Trail, Sep 25
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 18, 2019 

The Schoodic Institute and Blue Hill Heritage Trust will hold a free citizen science training for Phenology Trail. Phenology, or nature’s calendar, is the study of plant and animal life cycle events. It includes tracking the timing of flowering and fruiting plants, emergence of insects, and bird migrations. At Carter Nature Preserve, Surry, September 25, 4-6:30 pm.
Public Comment Forum on Aerial Herbicide, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 18, 2019 

Public meeting on aerial herbicide applications for managing forestland. At UMaine at Fort Kent, September 24, 2019, 6 pm.
The Ecology of the Heath, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 17, 2019 

Naturalist Fred Cichocki will describe the ecology of the 12-acre heath at Cathance Rive Nature Preserve in Topsham and other sphagnum moss wetlands. At Topsham Public Library, September 24, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Oppose CMP's transmission corridor
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Ask Maine’s Congressional delegation to urge the Army Corps for an Environmental Impact Statement and public hearing on Central Maine Power’s proposal for a transmission corridor through Western Maine. ~ Nick Bennett, NRCM
No logging in the Tongass National Forest
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

The Amazon is burning, yet Donald Trump wants to open the world's largest intact temperate forest to mining and logging exploitation. He is opening 10 million acres in the Tongass National Forest to brutal exploitation. Tongass retains more carbon than any forest in the U.S., provides habitat for iconic wild creatures and contains old-growth trees as much as 1,000 years old. Don't let Trump destroy it. ~ CREDO Action
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News Items
How leftover farmers market produce is helping provide hunger relief in Greater Bangor
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

According to data released in 2017 by the USDA, Maine is ranked as the seventh most food insecure state in the nation and the most food insecure state in New England. About 16 percent of residents, including one-fifth of children, lack access to the quantity and quality of food necessary for an active and healthy lifestyle. Every Saturday for the last seven years or so, Charlie Boothby has visited the Brewer Farmers Market to ask for free food. As a volunteer gleaner, he collects unsold produce and food products at the end of the weekly farmers market. Boothby is the key connection between farmers with leftover products and the people who need them.
Zinke was a rising star in Washington. Then he joined the Trump administration.
Washington Post - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

A day after the Senate made Ryan Zinke the first Montanan to serve in a presidential Cabinet, the new Interior secretary put on a black cowboy hat, mounted a horse named Tonto and paraded across the Mall with a U.S. Park Police detail to the front doors of Interior’s downtown Washington headquarters. To some liberal conservationists, Zinke appeared to be a conservative who could bridge the partisan divide. But Zinke was anything but bipartisan. His zeal in carrying out Trump’s vision of “American energy dominance” by boosting coal and gas production on public lands angered Democrats who supported him, and his tendency to overstep the limits of his power at Interior worried Republicans and the president. During his brief 21-month tenure, he racked up 15 probes into his management and behavior.
Camuso is great choice for DIFW
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

Judy Camuso is a great choice for Commissioner of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, and we must thank Governor-elect Janet Mills for choosing Judy. Judy is well respected both inside and outside the department, where she is currently the director of the wildlife division. Many of us recommended Judy to Janet. I’ve spent some time lately talking to both Janet and Judy about my suggestions for changes and improvements at DIFW.
Bucksport mill site demo continues for salmon farm, Maine Maritime center
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

The Bucksport town manager expressed confidence Wednesday that the site of the former Verso Paper mill be clean enough to allow construction of a proposed $250 million salmon farm this spring. Site owner American Iron and Metal, a scrap metal recycler, is doing demolition work on the 250-acre waterfront property, while Whole Oceans, the company proposing the salmon farm, seeks permits for the farm.
Opinion: Address region’s rising seas and traffic with mass transit, holistic planning
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

The potential for global warming from carbon dioxide emissions has been known in the scientific community since the early 1900s. In the late 1950s, scientists were projecting that carbon dioxide emissions would have potentially radical effects on climate. U.S. politicians have kicked this can down the road for nearly 60 years, and local governments continue to do the same. Our backs are now against the wall, with immediate action needed. The world needs to reduce carbon emissions by 45% by 2030 and eliminate them by 2050. First, a global carbon tax is needed. Let the free market determine the most economical solutions. In the meantime, sensible planning can better position Maine’s economy for the coming dramatic challenges. There needs to be a holistic regional transportation plan that improves mass transit and takes advantage of the region’s rail assets to better position the Maine economy for a carbon tax. ~ Carlton Wilcox, New Gloucester
Letter: Eat plant-centered diet to benefit environment and your health
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

In the face of dire reports related to the climate change crisis facing humanity, it’s easy to feel helpless. But we can all take easy steps to make a positive impact right now. By choosing a more plant-centered diet, both the Earth and our health benefit. Learning how to incorporate more plant-based proteins – lentils, beans, tofu, tempeh, etc. – will not only make a positive impact environmentally, it will save you money and likely improve your health. ~ Mary Ann Larson, Portland
Letter: Deny Avangrid's application
Sun Journal - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

Avangrid touts that their 145-mile swath of new Central Maine Power transmission line will financially benefit landowners in the townships it passes through for years to come, even going so far as saying it will drive down electrical costs for CMP users in Maine. That is bah and humbug. Every single kilowatt converted from DC to AC at their proposed Lewiston conversion facility will go out of state. Members of Maine PUC should deny Avangrid’s application, just as New Hampshire’s commissioners did. ~ John Davis, South Paris
Letter: Nothing more than junk science
Sun Journal - Thursday, December 20, 2018 

The article, “Climate talks go forward,” claims that “… to prevent the Earth’s average global temperatures from rising above 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of the century compared to pre-industrial times.” There is no way that anyone can determine to 0.1 degree Celsius accuracy the average temperature of the entire Earth (much of which had not then been explored) in pre-industrial times. Yet, that temperature must be known to that accuracy to calculate the change to within 0.1 degree Celsius. This is a spurious claim that throws all of the claims of the UN climate group in doubt. There are scientists who question the claims of those who say, “the sky is falling” over man-made global warming. They must be heard. ~ Thomas Standard, Sumner
The Legacy of Paul LePage
Other - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Pine Tree Watch - No matter what your opinion of Paul LePage is, it’s safe to say that his two terms as governor have added up to a contentious tenure. LePage receives criticism from both sides of the aisle for his stubbornness on issues related to the environment. The governor allowed $6.5 million worth of voter-approved conservation bonds to lapse because. Beth Ahearn, political director for Maine Conservation Voters, took a dim view of LePage’s environmental record, criticizing his appointment of “unqualified or openly hostile” members to the Land for Maine’s Future board. LePage “hated this program, and spread false information about land conservation,” she says. Over the past eight years, LePage’s “opposition to basic environmental stewardship has jeopardized our clean air, water and wildlife and caused lasting damage to agencies tasked with protecting our environment,” Ahearn says.
Zinke's Deputy: The Former Fossil Fuel Lobbyist Running Trump's Interior Dept.
Inside Climate News - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

In September 2017, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was slated to make a speech that would showcase his work on President Donald Trump's "energy dominance" policy. Instead, he used the occasion to deride his critics and engage testily with hecklers, putting a spotlight on the ethical lapses that would come to define his tenure as the nation's top public lands steward. But while Zinke was making headlines that distracted from Trump's fossil fuel-focused policy, his department was working busily to implement it under the leadership of his deputy, former energy industry lobbyist and agency veteran David Bernhardt. In just the week leading up to Zinke's speech, Bernhardt met with senior executives of ExxonMobil and the American Petroleum Institute, and visited the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Energy Institute.
Podcast: Interview with NRCM's Judy Berk
Natural Resources Council of Maine - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

After 28 years, the Natural Resources Council of Maine's media guru, Judy Berk, retires this week. She sat down with Carly Peruccio to talk about her work and to share some memorable experiences during her time at NRCM.
Maine Snowmobile Association issues off-trail reminders
Turner Publishing - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

The Maine Snowmobile Association is offering reminders about off-trail riding posted in conjunction North Maine Woods. The reminders include:
• Stay off all plowed roads and log yards
• Snow covers everything; if you’re unsure, check locally or just don’t go
• Hire a guide.
• Ride responsibly
• Respect Landowners
Somerset County commissioners maintain support for CMP project
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Somerset County commissioners on Wednesday voted against rescinding support for a proposed 145-mile transmission line from Quebec to Lewiston and on to Massachusetts, drawing criticism from opponents. Following recent pleas from both supporters and opponents of NECEC, the commission voted 3-2 to not rescind support. Commissioners Lloyd Trafton, Newell Graf Jr., and Dean Cray voted to keep supporting the Central Maine Power project. Cyp Johnson and Robert Sezak voted to rescind support.
State prepares to install string of high-speed chargers for electric vehicles
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Efficiency Maine, an agency that promotes energy efficiency, has contracted ChargePoint Inc., a California company, to install and operate seven charging stations on highways from southern Maine to the Quebec border. The stations are the start of a three-phase plan to establish publicly available, fast chargers on important thoroughfares for tourists and Maine residents. “When we are done with phase one and phase two we should have a pretty good network along these major corridors spread out every 50 miles, give or take,” said Michael Stoddard, Efficiency Maine executive director.
Wardens offer $1,000 for information about deer that could have been killed illegally
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

The Maine Warden Service is asking the public for information about a deer that may have been illegally killed. On Oct. 21, game wardens responded to a report of a dead male whitetail deer in a field on Bean Road. During the investigation, it was determined that the deer was “likely killed illegally and left to waste,” according to Cpl. John MacDonald. He said it was shot and killed. “There is some evidence on the deer that shows that it could (have been) killed by a human."
Bath’s public composting bins have kept 15 tons of solid waste out of its landfill
Times Record - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Bath’s landfill won’t be able to take the city’s waste forever. That’s one reason why Bath launched a public composting project nearly two years ago to prevent organic trash from taking up space and filling the landfill sooner. In the less than two years since the program launched, Garbage to Gardens has collected nearly 15 tons of compostable waste. The 15-ton figure also doesn’t account for the organic waste composted outside of the public bins. Some residents pay Garbage to Gardens for curbside pickup of their compostable materials, while other residents have their own private compost piles.
Mills Nominates Maine's Wildlife Division Director to Head Fisheries and Wildlife Department
Maine Public - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Maine Gov.-elect Janet Mills announced Wednesday that she's nominating the Director of Wildlife at Maine's Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to lead the department. If confirmed, Judy Camuso would be the first woman to lead the department. Mills acknowledges that Camuso will need to learn about other divisions of IF&W. “She will have to spread her wings a bit to get a handle on the fisheries side of things more than the wildlife side of things,” Mills says. “She is more than capable of doing that. She is very, very bright.”
To lead Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Mills picks biologist with 10 years in the department
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Gov.-elect Janet Mills said Wednesday that she will nominate Judy Camuso, director of the Wildlife Division at the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, to serve as the department’s next commissioner. The news that Camuso would head IFW drew quick praise from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, Maine Trappers Association, and Maine Renewable Energy Association.
Janet Mills nominates first woman to serve as commissioner of DIF&W
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Gov.-elect Janet Mills announced Wednesday that she will nominate Judy Camuso as the next commissioner of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Camuso has served as wildlife division director since 2013. Before that, she was an assistant regional wildlife biologist from 2007 until 2012, and special projects coordinator in 2013. Before joining the department, she served as Gilsland Farm Center Director at Maine Audubon from 1996-2007. Camuso earned the respect of many in the hunting and trapping communities in 2014, when she vigorously defended the department’s wildlife biologists during a referendum effort that sought to end the trapping of bears, as well as the hunting of bears with bait or hounds.
PETA lodges complaint against another Maine lobster processor
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Five years after it sought to have charges filed against a Rockland lobster processing plant, an animal rights group that has repeatedly raised concerns about alleged animal cruelty in Maine’s signature seafood industry has lodged a complaint against a Gouldsboro seafood processor. PETA wrote that Maine Fair Trade Lobster “mutilates and tortures fully conscious lobsters, causing them unjustifiable pain and suffering."
The parts of Maine where LePage was least popular prospered most under his tenure
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

Gov. Paul LePage has maintained staunch support in the northern, rural areas of Maine that have struggled economically during his time in office, while being deeply unpopular in the southern, urban areas that have prospered. Overall, voting data and a variety of economic indicators suggest Mainers’ opinions of the governor are divorced from what’s going on in their local economies. For LePage, who made strengthening fishing, farming and forestry an important part of his 2012 State of the State address, trying to fight for rural areas was a core political cause.
Letter: Carbon fee legislation a serious step in solving climate problem
Times Record - Wednesday, December 19, 2018 

In response to Jill Standish’s letter in the Dec. 13 Times Record, I disagree that the proposed carbon dioxide emissions fee legislation will make gas and oil more expensive; it will merely move some money around a bit: out of one pocket and back into the other. This bill, sponsored in the U.S. House of Representatives by four Democrats and three Republicans, is the first concrete, tangible effort to get Congress to get serious about attacking our Climate Change catastrophe, which is already destroying Earth as we know it. ~ Richard Evans III, Bowdoinham
Harpswell approves new oyster hatchery
Times Record - Tuesday, December 18, 2018 

Harpswell will be home to one of the state’s few commercial oyster hatcheries after selectmen approved a lease with Running Tide Technologies Inc., a South Portland company looking to open a hatchery at Mitchell Field early next year. While oyster farming has been a growing industry over the past few years, the state only has two commercial hatcheries. One is in Walpole/Damariscotta and the other in Bremen. Running Tide Technologies Inc. has four aquaculture leases, all in Harpswell. The company also has floated ideas about kayak and outdoor equipment rentals, as well as oyster cookouts and a tasting area on site.
Maine Hunters Declining While Angler Numbers Are Up
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, December 18, 2018 

While the number of Maine anglers has increased in recent years, the number of hunters continues to decline. Let’s start with hunters. I looked at data from 2001 to 2017. Hunting numbers for residents was highest in 2003, at 166,675. In 2017, that total was just 131,404. The numbers are beefed up a bit by lifetime license holders which total 24,626 for fishing, 2,950 for hunting, and 54,051 who have a combination hunting and fishing lifetime license. Fishing license sales for residents in this time period peaked in 2016, at 189,896, and totaled 180,498 in 2017. Nonresident fishing licenses peaked in 2016 at 84,673, and were 84,308 in 2017. Nonresident hunters plunged from 40,558 in 2001 to 26,860 in 2017.
Frayed tempers on display at fish farm meeting Watch the latest meeting about the proposed Belfast fish farm
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, December 18, 2018 

Tempers were hot and patience was at a low ebb Monday night for some who attended a tense public information meeting organized by the company that would like to build one of the world’s largest land-based salmon farms in Belfast. Nordic Aquafarms announced last winter that it wanted to construct a salmon farm near Little River, close to the Northport town line. Many in the community are generally in favor of the property tax relief and jobs that could stem from the development, which is projected to cost from $150 million to $500 million, and which would have a capacity of more than 60 million pounds of salmon per year. But plenty of others in the region have loudly fought against the proposal.
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