August 14, 2018  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Lessons from the Great Conservationists of the Past, Aug 21
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 14, 2018 

Larry Nielsen, author of “Nature’s Allies: Eight Conservationists Who Changed Our World,” will speak at Schoodic Institute, Winter Harbor, August 21, 7 pm.
Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Saturday, August 11, 2018 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond). We have posted summaries and links to over 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
Farm to Table Dinner, Aug 18
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 11, 2018 

Dinner features the creations of four Maine-based professional female chefs, followed by a mission auction and the music of folk musician, Bill Staines. Benefits Growing to Give, which grows and donates certified organic vegetables to local food banks and pantries. At Scatter Good Farm, Brunswick, August 18, 5-9 pm.
Beaver presentation and paddle, Aug 18
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 11, 2018 

Learn about beavers with Master Naturalist, Christy Stout. Enjoy a slideshow presentation followed by a paddle to look for beaver signs. At Hirundo Wildlife Refuge, near Bangor, August 18, 5 pm.
Merrymeeting Bay Rare Mud Plant Walk, Aug 18
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 11, 2018 

Justin Schlawin, ecologist with the Maine Natural Areas Program, will lead a walk among the rare mud plants of Merrymeeting Bay. At Choice View Farm, Dresden, August 18, 1:30-3:30 pm. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Identifying Woodland Shrubs, Aug 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, August 9, 2018 

Join Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District and the Maine Forest Service for a walk & talk “Identifying Woodland Shrubs.” At Georges River Land Trust’s Appleton Preserve, August 16, 3-5 pm, pre-register.
Climate change communication workshop, Aug 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, August 9, 2018 

The Maine Climate Table, in partnership with GrowSmart Maine, will present a climate change communication workshop. At the Center for an Ecology-Based Economy, Norway, August 16, from 8:30 am to noon.
Rangeley Frog Jumping Contest, Aug 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, August 9, 2018 

The annual Frog Jumping Contest will leap onto the scene again at the Rangeley Blueberry Festival. Those entering should catch and release their frog or toad in the same location, to keep him or her happy and alive. At Episcopal Church, Rangeley, August 16, sign up starts at 12:30 pm, contest begins at 1 pm.
New wildlife teaching tools for a new school year
Publication - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

Explore World Wildlife Fund's Wild Classroom, a growing library of animal- and nature-related toolkits to help foster children's curiosity and inspire the next generation of scientists and conservationists.
What Have Loons Told Us? Aug 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

After 35 Years of Maine Audubon’s Loon Count, and with the help of thousands of “citizen science” volunteers, we know that in many ways loons are doing better than ever. At Somes-Meynell Wildlife Sanctuary, Mt. Desert, August 15, 7 pm.
Blazing Ahead: Rivalry That Built the Appalachian Trail, Aug 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

Jeffrey Ryan, a Maine-based author and photographer, will tell the story of how the Appalachian Trail was envisioned and built. At Maine State Library, Augusta, August 15, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Historical Society.
Farming the Sea - Aquaculture in Maine's Future, Aug 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

Author and food authority Nancy Harmon Jenkins will talk about the future of aquaculture in Maine. At Island Institute, Rockland, August 15, 10:30 am.
Landscape Design Lessons from Manhattan to Maine, Aug 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

Patrick Cullina will talk about site design and plant and material selection on projects in New York City, above Long Island Sound, on the North Fork of Long Island, and on a privately-owned island just south of Rockland, Maine. At Bar Harbor, August 15, 4 pm, Beatrix Farrand Society members $10, non-members $20, students free, pre-register.
Blazing Ahead, Aug 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, August 8, 2018 

Jeffrey Ryan speaks about the rivalry that built the Appalachian Trail. At Maine State Library, Augusta, August 15, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Historical Society.
Comments on wind development in Maine due Aug 15
Action Alert - Tuesday, August 7, 2018 

Gov. Paul LePage created the Maine Wind Energy Advisory Commission to study the economic impact of potential wind turbines; to assess the economic impact of expedited permitting rules and procedures; and to assess and develop recommendations in a written report. Comments to due August 15.
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News Items
Commerce Department upholds tariffs on Canadian newsprint
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

The U.S. Commerce Department has upheld recently imposed tariffs on Canadian newsprint despite warnings that the import taxes could be devastating to the already struggling American newspaper industry. The revised tariffs unveiled Thursday are lower in most cases than those originally imposed this year but still would slap an anti-dumping border tax as high as 16.9 percent on one Canadian paper manufacturer. Newspaper executives in Maine said their Canadian newsprint suppliers already have raised prices as a result of the initial tariffs.
Maine groups slam Trump administration plan on fuel-efficiency, emissions standards
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

Environmental and health groups in Maine decried a Trump administration plan announced Thursday to undermine states’ ability to set tougher vehicle emissions standards and to freeze fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks. Attorneys general from more than a dozen states – including Maine – also are vowing to fight the changes in court.
Biologists: Despite recent Nova Scotia incident, Maine black bears far more likely to run away than chase a human
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

On July 21, an Atlantic salmon fisherman, Greg Lovely, ran into a bear in Nova Scotia that actively charged him, swimming across the salmon pool after the wading angler. Lovely made it to his car safely, and the bear gave up its pursuit on the shore of the pool. Maine wildlife biologists Randy Cross and Jennifer Vashon, whose focus is black bears, said Lovely’s response isn’t recommended, but his actions worked out well in the situation he found himself. “He ran. [We advise people to] back away,” Vashon said.
Trump administration to freeze fuel efficiency requirements
Washington Post - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

The Trump administration on Thursday announced plans to freeze fuel efficiency requirements for the nation’s cars and trucks through 2026 while moving to undercut the ability of states – including Maine – to set their own tailpipe emissions restrictions.
Shifting sands: Freeport’s Desert of Maine for sale
Forecaster - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

After nearly 15 years of keeping business blooming at the Desert of Maine, Gary and Ginger Currens are ready to sell their home at 95 Desert Road and the dunes that come with it. Ginger Currens on July 30 said it is “just time” for the couple to move on. The approximately 40-acre property, offered for $725,000, includes the “desert” and surrounding trails, the couple’s home, a 48-site campground, gift shop and a barn that is more than 225 years old – the last remaining evidence that the desert was once a fertile farm.
Endangered bird revealing big clues about local impact of climate change
Other - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

Boston 25 News - Terns are small birds revealing big clues about the health of the New England environment. These seabirds are being studied to see how climate change is impacting the local eco-system. "Our main goals out here are management, monitoring, and research,” explained Liz Craig, tern conservation manager for UNH’s Shoals Marine Laboratory. The adult terns don’t like human interference as they nest. They squawk loudly, dive bomb, and even poop on when people if they get too close. Despite their belligerent nature, the terns provide a plethora of useful data. “Basically, these birds are flying fisheries biologists,” said Jennifer Seavey, the laboratory’s executive director. “They’re sampling a size and class of fish that’s actually very hard to sample.”
Nuisance squirrels digging up gardens, invading houses in Bangor
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

Bob Kelly knows he’ll never trap all the squirrels in Bangor, but that’s not stopping him from live-trapping and relocating every one of the rodents he can from the city’s Tree Streets neighborhood where they seem especially numerous this summer. According to the squirrel experts, there is no single reason for the population explosion around Kelly’s neighborhood.
Editorial: Maine lobster fishery doesn’t need a lecture on ethics from PETA
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

We don’t look forward to the annual attack by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals on the lobster fishery. The Maine lobster fishery is one of the most sustainable in the world. The PETA advocates should focus on actual abuse of animals (which is abundant elsewhere) and take a cue about what to do in Maine from our other visitors. Relax – it’s Vacationland.
Letter: Non-recyclable plastic waste abounds in our waterways
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

Maine has a reputation for being a pristine state with scenic coastlines and a booming seafood industry. Trash however, particularly plastic trash threatens not only the aesthetics of our shorefront but also wreaks havoc on aquatic life when it gets into the water (which it eventually does). Over the last three years more than 1,200 pounds of trash, much of it plastic, was removed from a very small area of the Long Creek, adjacent to the Maine Mall. With greater public awareness, community and business trash reduction efforts, as well as environmentally-thoughtful purchasing and reuse practices we can all be part of the solution to do our part to reduce plastic waste. ~ Bridget Domareki, Westbrook
Letter: Dairy industry mustn’t control rules for labeling
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

The Food and Drug Administration and the milk industry have banned using the term “milk” for coconut milk, “because by definition it (milk) comes from animals that lactate.” However, the other uses are in the dictionary also. I wonder if they are going to challenge the use of “milkweed.” No one mistakes cow’s milk for milk from coconuts. The milk industry is not harmed by the presence of other “milks” on the market. This action, where the federal government is strongly influenced by lawyers for industry, is like the sugar industry demanding that “jam is defined as 50 percent sugar. Trying to eat healthily is against the profit bottom line. ~ Larry Gilbert, Jr., Westbrook
Letter: Clean water under threat
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

As a young, lifelong Mainer, I want to stay here and make a career in the outdoor industry, in a state where making a career isn’t always easy. The outdoor economy in Maine thrives because we’re known for having a pristine environment and clean water. But now, with the proposed repeal of the 2015 clean water rule, our clean water is threatened. The clean water rule repeal is likely to come up for a vote again soon. Rep. Bruce Poliquin has supported the repeal, and Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King have an important role to play, too. I encourage Mainers to contact their offices to express support for the clean water rule, which protects Maine’s waters for a strong outdoor economy, so people such as me are able to make a living in our state. ~ Jeremy Vroom, Lamoine
Letter: Salmon farm concerns
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 2, 2018 

I have lived and worked in Belfast for 28 years. The current divisiveness hurts my heart. The jaw-dropping vitriol expressed toward residents concerned about the salmon farm was a red flag. It indicated an already “done deal,” and that calling opponents or just people asking questions a “mob” was an effort to choke off further dialogue by intimidation. I see no effort to control the amount of water the salmon farm can have when limits to the water have been reached, and people’s wells start to go dry. Protection is removed from the conversation. I do not want valuable natural resources to be exploited for corporate greed. Water is our wealth, water is life. ~ Eileen Wolper, Belfast
Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change
New York Times - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

This narrative by Nathaniel Rich is a work of history, addressing the 10-year period from 1979 to 1989: the decisive decade when humankind first came to a broad understanding of the causes and dangers of climate change. Complementing the text is a series of aerial photographs and videos, all shot over the past year by George Steinmetz. This two-part article is based on 18 months of reporting and well over a hundred interviews. It tracks the efforts of a small group of American scientists, activists and politicians to raise the alarm and stave off catastrophe. It will come as an agonizing revelation to many readers to understand how thoroughly they grasped the problem and how close they came to solving it.
SBA's regional director touts programs to boost rural Maine
Mainebiz - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

As president of Our Katahdin, the grassroots nonprofit organization that's working to redevelop the shuttered Great Northern Paper mill in Millinocket and bring back good-paying jobs to a region still suffering from paper mill closures in the last decade, Sean DeWitt and his team are juggling several balls to make that happen. Each of the initiatives requires allies. So when the SBA's regional New England Administrator Wendell Davis drove up from Boston last week to see what Our Katahdin was up to at the shuttered Millinocket mill site, DeWitt and his team welcomed that opportunity.
Marine Protected Areas Can Help Preserve Coral Reefs
Other - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Environmental Monitor - The idea that designating Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) can help preserve coral reefs has been contested in the past. This is predictable, given that strict protections on a marine area mean less fishing options for local people and businesses. Furthermore, as coral reefs continue to exhibit signs of stress and, in some cases, die off completely, it’s easy to assume that the MPA, as an element of a management strategy, just isn’t working. However, new, painstaking research confirms that MPAs can in fact help coral reefs. University of Maine professor of marine biology Robert Steneck led the research team in this case.
Maine Coast Heritage Trust opens $25 million fundraising effort
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust announced a campaign Wednesday to raise $25 million as the final piece of what’s billed as the “largest coastal conservation effort” in state history. Officials at the Topsham-based organization said they hope the overall $125 million campaign will help protect public access to additional stretches of Maine’s coastline at a time of growing threats from development, sea level rise and other impacts from climate change. With roughly $100 million already raised, pledged or donated as land during the “silent” phase, the trust hopes to raise the remaining $25 million of the “Keep the Coast Maine” campaign by the end of 2019.
Heating oil spill prompts cleanup in Augusta
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

State officials worked through the day on Wednesday to clean up 50 to 100 gallons of oil spilled from the basement of a building at 667 Riverside Drive in Augusta. The spill did not affect any nearby water sources, according to a Maine Department of Environmental Protection spokesperson.
Largest Conservation Effort In Maine History Aims To Save The State’s Coast — And Its Culture
Maine Public - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Less than one percent of Maine's coastline offers guaranteed public access. It's a near-historic low that the Maine Coast Heritage Trust wants to reverse. Wednesday the organization announced a $125 million fundraising campaign to expand ocean waterfront access and protect it from development pressure and climate change.
Blog: LePage says biofuel companies to open in Maine
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

In a rambling, 15-minute speech at an event Tuesday for a Republican candidate for the Maine House of Representatives, Gov. Paul LePage renewed his ongoing feud with Democratic Attorney General Janet Mills, attacked rank-and-file Republicans, warned that there are troubling signs for the state’s economy and touched on a range of other topics. The governor said that nine companies plan to open in Maine soon, mentioning lumber and biofuels specifically. He gave no additional details.
Maine organization raises $100 million to protect coastline
WPFO Fox23 Maine - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

A Maine organization is raising more than $100 million to protect Maine’s coastline. The Maine Coast Heritage Trust says time is running out to save the shores because of growing environmental problems. Those issues range from companies building too close to shores, temperatures rising, and growing tourism. The president of the trust, Tim Glidden, says even if you live far from the coast, you could be affected by Maine’s coast changing.
Popular plant linked to Lyme disease is now banned in Maine
WGME-TV13 - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Because of its invasive nature, starting this year, Japanese barberry cannot be sold in Maine. State horticulturist Gary Fish said it's preventing native plants from growing and doesn't provide the food or habitat wildlife needs. Studies suggest Japanese barberry may also be fueling the spread of Lyme disease. "They're definitely a tick magnet . They're very much a tick magnet and they not only are a tick magnet; they're a mouse magnet and mice is where Lyme disease is reservoired," Fish said.
Maple syrup and honey producers won’t be stuck with confusing label
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

It’s a sweet victory for Maine maple syrup and honey producers. An amendment preventing a confusing labeling requirement from moving forward was approved Wednesday by the U.S. Senate. The amendment, authored by Republican Sen. Susan Collins and co-sponsored by Sen. Angus King, an independent, puts an end to an FDA proposal that would require maple syrup and honey labels to indicate the products contain “added sugar.”
2017 Was One Of The Hottest Years On Record
National Public Radio - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

NOAA has released the latest State of the Climate report, its annual checkup on our planet. So, how did Earth fare in 2017? Greenhouse gases in the atmosphere: highest concentrations ever. Global surface temperature: near-record high. Sea surface temperature: near-record high. Global sea level: highest on record.
MCHT announces $125M campaign to save the Maine coast
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust announced on Wednesday a goal of raising $125 million by the end of 2019 for what the organization calls the largest coastal conservation effort in Maine’s history. The campaign will fund a wide range of coastal conservation projects, with an emphasis on improving public access to the Maine coast, and conserving important coastal habitats that are threatened by climate change, sea level rise and development.
CMP says it has beefed up smart-meter network in wake of historic outage
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 1, 2018 

Central Maine Power Co. says it is making its smart-meter network less vulnerable to power outages, a weak link identified during last October’s wind and rainstorm that blacked out a record number of customers. On Wednesday, the company said that key devices in the network are now wired for backup generators, and that the utility has increased the number of mobile generators available for use during extended outages.
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