January 23, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Wednesday, January 23, 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). 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
Browntail moth, Jan 30
Event - Posted - Wednesday, January 23, 2019 

Maine Forest Service Entomologist Tom Schmeelk and District Forester Morten Moesswilde explain how to identify and manage browntail moths. At Lewiston Public Works, January 30, 10 am - 2 pm.
Lake St. George Ice Fishing Derby, Jan 26
Event - Posted - Saturday, January 19, 2019 

Learn how to fish. All equipment and bait provided. Lunch, hot cocoa, and warming hut. At Lake St. George State Park, Liberty, January 26, 8 am - 2 pm.
Brown-tail moths, Jan 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 17, 2019 

Eleanor Groden, professor of entomology at the University of Maine, will discuss the health hazards presented by, and recommended management strategies of, brown-tail moths. At Palermo Community Library, January 24, 6:30 pm.
20th Anniversary Maine Farmland Trust Kick Off Event, Jan 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 17, 2019 

Join a festive hometown gathering to look back at Maine Farmland Trust's many milestones since 1999, and celebrate the founders and members who helped to shape the organization. At United Farmer’s Market of Maine, Belfast, January 24, 6 pm.
Explore Nature through photography, Jan 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 17, 2019 

Local photographers Michele Benoit, Donne Sinderson, and Richard Spinney will share their photographs, experience and tips for photographing the natural world. At Bangor, January 24, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Bangor Land Trust.
Help pick BDN top issue
Action Alert - Tuesday, January 15, 2019 

This year, the Bangor Daily News opinion pages will focus attention on four issues that are critical to Maine’s future. We have picked three areas: economic development; referendum reform; and Maine’s rural, spread out population. Help pick the fourth topic. Climate change and the associated energy, land-use and conservation policies are the top concern so far.
Marching Backwards
Publication - Tuesday, January 15, 2019 

A report by the Environmental Defense Fund about how Andrew Wheeler and Donald Trump are endangering the health of American families by rolling back environmental safeguards.
Browntail Moth, Jan 22
Event - Posted - Tuesday, January 15, 2019 

Maine Forest Service Entomologist Tom Schmeelk and District Forester Morten Moesswilde explain how to identify and manage browntail moths. At Boothbay Regional Land Trust's Oak Point Farm, January 22, 3 pm.
Tree Appreciation Walk, Jan 20
Event - Posted - Monday, January 14, 2019 

Kids, adults, and families are invited on a walking exploration and appreciation of trees. At Thorne Head Preserve Bath, January 20, 1-2:30 pm. Co-sponsored by Kennebec Estuary Land Trust and Beth Israel Congregation.
Colonizing history of Wabanaki people, Europeans, Jan 20
Event - Posted - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Maine-Wabanaki REACH and the Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Augusta hold an interactive story-telling experience about the colonizing history of Wabanaki (the Indigenous people of Maine) and Europeans and their descendants. At UU Church, Augusta, January 20, 1-3 pm, RSVP.
L.L.Bean Outdoor Discovery Programs
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 10, 2019 

Expert guides. Amazing scenery. Hundreds of new activities to learn. Plus, customized trips, all-inclusive adventures, kids’ camps and more. Starting at $25.
Ice Fishing the Downeast, Jan 17
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 10, 2019 

Gregory Burr, regional biologist for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, talks about “Ice Fishing the Downeast Region.” At Schoodic Institute, Winter Harbor, January 17, noon.
Nature Notes from Maine, Jan 17
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 10, 2019 

Ed Robinson shares interesting facts about some of Maine's most beautiful and fascinating wildlife. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, January 17, 6 pm potluck, 7 pm presentation. Sponsored by Appalachian Mountain Club.
Weekly Winter Adventure camp in Bethel begins Jan. 16
Announcement - Wednesday, January 9, 2019 

The UMaine 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Bryant Pond, in partnership with the Mahoosuc Land Trust and Mahoosuc Kids Association, is offering a six-week Winter Adventure course, beginning Wednesday, January 16.
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News Items
Mainer rides 8 miles with broken leg after moose causes snowmobile crash
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

A Maine snowmobiler drove his sled eight miles Friday night with a fractured leg after he was involved in a chain reaction snowmobile accident started by a moose, game wardens said. Bruce Saucier, 44, was the last sled of three riding around 6 p.m. Friday on ITS 110 when the lead rider — Alex Giebitz, 27, from East Berne, New York — saw the young moose in a trail west of Greenville. Giebitz was able to avoid the moose, but Juan Fernandez from New York, who was riding a 2015 SkiDoo Renegade was unable to avoid the animal and collided with it. The impact killed the animal and caused considerable damage to Fernandez’s sled. Saucier collided with the rear end of Fernandez’s sled and the impact fractured Saucier’s right leg. The trio were issued a permit to keep the moose.
Beautiful bird illustrations and poems
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

Captivated by the beautiful illustration of a bird on the cover of From Nana’s Window, a quick glance at the author’s name told me it is Margaret Grouse. Very appropriate for a book about birds! But I got that wrong. Her name is Margaret Gouse and she’s a recent college and law school graduate who grew up on Maine’s southern coast. As a young girl, she carried around her Audubon field guide to identify birds in her backyard. I was entranced by the illustrations of Esther Safford, Margaret’s nana. And each illustration generated a short poem from Margaret, often including the calls of the bird.
Legislature tackles everything from ice fishing to turkey hunting
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

The legislature’s Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee will be busy this session. I’m writing a series of columns about all the bills of interest to sportsmen and women. While we await details of these bills, we can guess from the titles what is being proposed. Here are some more titles and sponsors. Many of these are not new ideas.
Developer: Belfast woman has no standing to challenge $250M Bucksport salmon farm
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

A Belfast woman lives too far from a proposed $250 million indoor salmon farm in Bucksport to appeal a wastewater discharge permit state regulators have issued. That’s the argument Whole Oceans LLC is making in a motion filed with the state Board of Environmental Protection earlier this week to dismiss Holly Faubel’s appeal of the wastewater permit the Maine Department of Environmental Protection granted the company in November. Whole Oceans hopes to start building the aquafarm this spring at the former Verso Paper mill site.
Letter: Blueberry story missed a few important points
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

The recent Associated Press article, “Wild blueberry crop may be about to make a comeback in Maine,” was welcome news with a few important missing footnotes. The reality of “modest harvest” sizes (which caused rising market prices) falls disproportionately on the many small growers most struggling to survive. One of the reasons for the drop in supply is that small growers are folding. The long-term solution lies in more products where the uniqueness of wild blueberries can truly shine. ~ Eric Martin and Michael Terrien, Bluet Wild Blueberry Sparkling Wine, Scarborough
Time to take a stand on nips?
Other - Friday, January 11, 2019 

CommonWealth magazine - Maybe it's time for Massachusetts to take a stand on nips, those little liquor bottles that many communities are coming to regard as a public nuisance. Maine, in its own convoluted way, has also been struggling with the issue. In 2017, state lawmakers in Maine voted to assess a 5-cent deposit on nips starting this year. Former governor Paul LePage vetoed the measure, but lawmakers overrode his veto. LePage then responded by vowing to ban the nips entirely as a public drinking danger. But that bid also failed when the Maine Liquor and Lottery Commission voted 4-1 to reject a nip ban.
Biomass generator missed at least 80 percent of subsidies
Other - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The subsidized newcomer to Maine’s biomass industry, Stored Solar, will miss out on at least 80 percent of the taxpayer dollars it could have collected under a two-year legislative bailout. By the end of 2018, Stored Solar had generated enough power to qualify for up to $2.1 million in subsidies, out of a possible $9.4 million. Meanwhile, the generator’s plants have laid idle and it cut employment in recent months. Another bailout recipient, ReEnergy, has shuttered one of two plants, in Fort Fairfield. Its Ashland plant continues to operate. Before shutting down, however, ReEnergy capturdroughly 75 percent of their total possible subsidy under the deal intended to help Maine’s forest product industry.
Five snowmobilers injured in 2 separate accidents in Maine
Portland Press Herald - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Four people were hurt in a crash involving several sleds on a remote trail system northwest of Millinocket that required a lengthy rescue. In the other accident Friday, a Rhode Island man was injured in northern Franklin County when he lost control of his snowmobile and struck a rock.
Multiple people injured after 4 snowmobiles crash in Penobscot County
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Four snowmobiles were involved in what Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife officials are calling “a complex snowmobile crash” Friday. A Rhode Island man was also injured in a snowmobile crash Friday in northern Franklin County.
In 1896 a lot of deer were being shot in Maine
Maine Environmental News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Excerpt form the 1896 Report of the Maine Inland Fish & Game Commissioners: There is no question but that at least ten thousand deer have been killed in Maine during the year 1896, quite a proportion of them by our own citizens. This is not merely guess work, but based on actual count of the numbers transported by the common carriers, and records kept by various sporting camp proprietors scattered over the State.
Oceans are warming faster than reports had suggested, scientists report
Washington Post - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The oceans are warming faster than climate reports have suggested, according to a new synthesis of temperature observations. “The numbers are coming in 40 to 50 percent (warmer) than the last IPCC report,” said Kevin Trenberth, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric research and an author on the report, published in Science Magazine on Thursday. Trenberth said, “2018 will be the warmest year on record in the oceans” as 2017 was and 2016 before that.
DA won’t prosecute Maine lobster processor over PETA’s animal cruelty claims
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The district attorney for Hancock County says he will not file charges against a Gouldsboro lobster processor where an animal welfare group shot a hidden-camera video. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals claimed that the video it recorded Oct. 1, 2018 inside the plant shows workers treating lobster inhumanely. Matthew Foster said there is a lack of conclusive evidence that lobsters are “sentient,” and noted that a similar complaint filed in 2013 in Knox County was not prosecuted either.
Shutdown affects Bay Ferries ferry plan in Bar Harbor
Mainebiz - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The federal government shutdown is hampering Bay Ferries Ltd.'s processing of plans to re-establish ferry service between Bar Harbor and Nova Scotia. Bay Ferries CEO Mark MacDonald told Mainebiz, "The shutdown has made our dealings with government agencies more difficult, but we understand the circumstances and everyone is doing their best to collectively move things forward as much as we can, despite the shutdown."
Ryan Zinke Prioritized Fixing National Parks. He Exited With Them In Shambles.
Huffington Post - Friday, January 11, 2019 

On his second day as interior secretary, Ryan Zinke told his staff that America’s national parks were “the face” of the Interior Department. He underlined the point by pledging to fix the estimated $12.5 billion park maintenance backlog, a move that earned him rare points with the conservation community. Less than two years later — on Jan. 2, the 12th day of President Donald Trump’s ongoing partial government shutdown — Zinke exited the department under a cloud of ethics scandals, and Americans instead saw national parks and monuments around the country overflowing with trash and human waste.
Maine's Bear Hunt Could See Changes This Year
Associated Press - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Legislators might consider changes to Maine's bear hunt in the coming year as the state grapples with a growing population of the animals. Maine has more than 35,000 bears, an increase of more than 12,000 from the mid-2000s. Republican Sen. Paul Davis is submitting a bill that would give the state wildlife commissioner the ability to adjust the rules governing the state's bear hunting season and bag limits. Republican Rep. Peter Lyford, of Eddington, is also considering submitting a bill that would create a spring bear hunting season. Attempts to tweak the bear hunt would generate considerable attention from hunters and animal welfare activists. A referendum to restrict the bear hunt in 2014 failed.
Opinion: Don’t replace Clean Water Act with ‘Dirty Water Rule’
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Fifty years ago our waterways were so polluted that most of them had a film layer on top and a noxious odor. We enjoy the pristine condition of Maine’s waterways today because of the Clean Water Act, written by Maine’s own U.S. Sen. Edmund S. Muskie. The Trump administration aims to roll back critical protections for America’s waterways. The “Dirty Water Rule” is an extreme attack on clean water. By stripping federal protections from streams and wetlands, it would put our waterways and our drinking water at risk of pollution. It defies common sense, sound science, and the will of Mainers. This is not the Maine way of life, and we need to make that clear to the EPA. ~ Carissa Maurin, Environment Maine
Land and Garden Preserve announces staff leadership promotions
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The Land & Garden Preserve on Mount Desert Island is pleased to announce several staff promotions. Cassie Banning became the Preserve’s director of Farm and Gardens on Jan. 1. She will lead the horticulture at Asticou Azalea Garden, Thuya Garden, Abby Garden and McAlpin Farm. Jon Knight, formerly the lead grower, became the manager of Abby Garden and McAlpin Farm. Jesse Hartson began as the Preserve’s facilities director.
Maine Seeks Ideas How To Spend Farm Bill Conservation Money
Associated Press - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Local working groups for Knox and Waldo counties and Kennebec and Lincoln counties are tasked with making recommendations to the Natural Resources Conservation Service about how to use money from the federal Farm Bill. The Knox/Waldo group is holding a meeting on Jan. 29 in Union and the Kennebec/Lincoln group is holding one on Feb. 5 in Augusta. The Maine agriculture department says it's looking for people such as agriculture producers, loggers, woodland owners and environmental organizations to attend the meetings. The Farm Bill money is slated to be used for conservation on private lands.
Homesteading kids thrive on being involved in the simple life
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The garden needs to be weeded and watered. The chickens need to be fed. There’s butter to churn and bread to bake. When the to-do list seems a mile long, it’s easy for parents to shoo away their children so they can complete chores as efficiently as possible. Yet homesteaders around the country caution against this tactic. Involving children in day-to-day tasks and projects on a homestead, they said, is important and rewarding in many ways.
Bear hunting, deer baiting among topics targeted by legislative bills
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Among the interesting bills that deal with Maine’s fish, wildlife and wild places to watch from this year’s initial listing:
• LR 68 seeks to make freshwater fishing hooks and lures biodegradable.
• Two bills seek to allow hunting deer over bait.
• LR 514 would give the DIFW commissioner authority to adjust bear hunting seasons and bag limits.
• LR 161 would allow for a spring bear hunt.
• LR 1971 would allow Sunday hunting in unorganized territories.
• Moving the Bureau of Public Lands from the Department of Ag to Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
Hancock County towns search for a trash alternative should Fiberight fail
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Concerns about a much-delayed $69 million recycling plant under construction in Hampden have compelled three Hancock County towns to consider building their own transfer station. Since August, selectmen from Brooklin, Brooksville and Sedgwick have met twice, toured a transfer station in Orrington and are forming a committee to investigate whether they should build a station as a backup to the Fiberight waste-to-biofuel facility, which is due to open by April.
Blog: I’m with Mills rather than a vague “green new deal”
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 11, 2019 

With a new Congress being inaugurated and Janet Mills taking the oath of office, one thing is coming into focus: Democrats are a study in contrasts. In Washington, a large contingent of newly elected representatives are calling for a “Green New Deal.” What actual, concrete policy does this slogan encompass? No one is really sure. Meanwhile, Maine Gov. Janet Mills suggested a very real, tangible action in her inaugural address: add solar panels to the Blaine House. A small gesture, but one with some substance behind it. The divergence continues from there. ~ Michael Cianchette, former counsel to former Gov. Paul LePage
Column: Green New Deal totally infeasible
Sun Journal - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s so-called Green New Deal makes the obligatory nod to the original New Deal, but FDR’s handiwork is much too modest an antecedent. The Green New Deal calls for a top-down revolution in the operation of American society so sweeping that it would be disturbing if it weren’t so wholly ridiculous. It shows all the thoughtfulness of a college sophomore pulling an all-nighter to write a term paper for his Millennial Socialism 101 class. The Green New Deal, as explained in draft legislation to create a congressional committee to pursue it, would transition to 100 percent renewable sources of national power in 10 years. ~ Rich Lowry
Column: A mountain or a molehill?
Times Record - Friday, January 11, 2019 

Whether it’s a mountain or a molehill, Morse Mountain in Phippsburg provides one of the finest easy hikes in the mid-coast area. Located 12.6 miles south of Bath on Route 209, the excursion entails a four-mile roundtrip trek over the “mountain” to Seawall Beach offering exceptional views from an overlook. Rare fragile plants and endangered birds can often be observed. The trip can be extended with a walk on the beach. It’s a great choice for us old geezers in search of a relatively benign hiking option or someone looking for a brief outing. ~ Ron Chase
Opinion: Lobstering is threatened by factors far bigger than aquaculture leases
Times Record - Friday, January 11, 2019 

The conflict between lobster harvest and formal aquaculture leases is a key issue that DMR must resolve as it assesses lease applications, in Maquoit Bay and elsewhere. Lobster harvesters have had de facto bottom leases for generations, and now fisheries managers must figure out how the bottom can be shared equitably and fairly. A key to this calculation is determining which habitats are optimal for each of these competing industries. If DMR determines that the lease site is indeed valuable lobster habitat, perhaps the solution is as simple as expanding the lease footprint and mandating that in-holdings be made available to lobster harvesters when they might be fishing there in the summer, while the oysters are on the surface. Lobstering is threatened by factors far bigger than aquaculture leases. We are losing productive Gulf of Maine lobster habitat to warming waters and acidification. ~ Ralph Keyes, Brunswick
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