August 24, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Friday, August 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; 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
Rangeley Outdoor Film Festival, Aug 30
Event - Posted - Friday, August 23, 2019 

The Rangeley Trail Town Festival features a variety of short films about the outdoors. At RFA Lakeside Theater, Rangeley, August 30, 7 pm, $6 for adults, $3 for Appalachian Trail hikers and children under 12.
LightHawk Paper Plane Contest
Announcement - Thursday, August 22, 2019 

Enter your best paper airplane design for a chance to have it mailed to thousands in LightHawk's 2019 Holiday Letter. Deadline: October 18, 2019.
BTLT Seeks Community Input on Future Conservation
Announcement - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust is seeking community input on its current and future conservation work in Brunswick, Topsham, and Bowdoin. A community survey is available online until September 2.
Butler to speak on conservation, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

Conservationist Gil Butler will discuss his efforts to establish outdoor education programs and conservation projects in Maine and throughout North and South America. At College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor, August 27, 9 am, free, parking on campus is by permit only.
Solo Paddle of Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Aug 27
Event - Posted - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 

Laurie Apgar Chandler will read from and discuss her book “Upwards,” which tells her story as the first woman to solo paddle New England’s 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail. At Bailey Library, Winthrop, August 27, 6:30 pm.
Keeping Acadia Healthy With New Science, Aug 26
Event - Posted - Monday, August 19, 2019 

Abraham Miller-Rushing and Rebecca Cole-Will will discuss how Acadia National Park is facing a triple environmental challenge: global warming, acid rain, and increased visitation. At Bar Harbor, August 26, 5 pm.
Maine’s Seaweed Scene, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Monday, August 19, 2019 

Susan Hand Shetterly and Robin Hadlock Seeley will discuss the importance of protected wild habitats and the critical role of seaweed in the Gulf of Maine. At Moore Community Center, Ellsworth, September 26, 7 pm. Hosted by Downeast Audubon.
Bee apocalypse
Action Alert - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

U.S. agriculture today is 48 times more toxic to honeybees than it was 25 years ago—almost entirely because of neonicotinoid pesticides. It's part of an "insect apocalypse." But instead of taking action, the Trump administration is shredding protections for bees. Will you stand with me in the fight to save the bees? ~ Mayor Ethan Strimling, Portland, Maine
Maine Farmland Trust Gallery 20th Anniversary Retrospective Exhibit, thru Oct 11
Announcement - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

To celebrate Maine Farmland Trust’s 20th anniversary, a curated retrospective featuring a selection of works that have been exhibited at the MFT Gallery over the past 10 years is on view through October 11.
National Parks Free Entrance, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

All National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone to celebrate the National Park Service's 103rd birthday on August 25.
Brechlin reading, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

Earl Brechlin, a Registered Maine Guide, will read from his book, "Return to Moose River: In Search of the Spirit of the Great North Woods," essays describing white-water canoeing, snowmobiling, and backpacking adventures in many parts of Maine. At Albert Church Brown Memorial Library, China, August 25, 2 pm.
Kennebec Land Trust annual meeting, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, August 18, 2019 

At Camp Androscoggin, Wayne, August 25. The trust has conserved more than 6,300 acres and constructed 44 miles of trails on KLT protected lands.
Maine Herpetological Society Reptile Expo, Aug 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 17, 2019 

50+ vendors, 1,000+ reptiles, plus Mr. Drew and His Animals Too. At Ramada Inn, Lewiston, August 25, 10 am - 4 pm, $7, kids under 12 free.
Families in the Outdoors, Aug 24
Event - Posted - Saturday, August 17, 2019 

Learn about all kinds of Maine bugs – the good, the bad and the very strange looking. At Law Farm, Dover-Foxcroft, August 24, 9 am - noon.
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News Items
Lawmakers propose fix to Maine’s food sovereignty law
Portland Press Herald - Friday, October 20, 2017 

With the fate of 90 percent state’s locally raised beef, poultry and pork on the line, lawmakers scrambled Friday to reach a deal to fix a recently passed law that was designed to allow farmers to sell their goods directly to consumers on the farm. After a threat from the federal U.S. Department of Agriculture that could have shuttered five state-licensed slaughterhouses, as well as dozens of other meat-processing facilities including small poultry processors or custom meat cutters, the Legislature’s Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee unanimously passed a bill that clarifies the state’s food sovereignty law, which allows local governments to set regulations for face-to-face sales on the farm.
Panel Unanimously Supports Compromise Food Sovereignty Bill
Maine Public - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Earlier this year, Gov. Paul LePage signed a food sovereignty bill, designed to establish local control over the private sale of food by farmers to consumers. But the U.S. Department of Agriculture says that would violate federal food safety laws, which require inspections of meat and poultry. The Legislature’s Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee has come up with a compromise bill lawmakers will consider Monday.
Relive some of our best deer tales ever
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Friday, October 20, 2017 

It’s that time of year again — deer season is nearly upon us, and if you’re like me, you’re ready to start living vicariously through the hunting tales that you hear from others. Here are a few of my favorite big buck tales from the past few years.
More than 12 departments respond as brush fire burns several acres on Woolwich island
Coastal Journal - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Over a dozen fire departments assisted Woolwich Fire Department Friday in fighting a brush fire on a small island located at the end of Island Road. crews had trouble locating the fire at first due to widespread smoke, spread by wind. The Maine Forestry Service was called to assist, and a helicopter pilot spotted the fire burning on the island. Fighting the fire proved difficult. When crews first arrived, low tide made accessing water from the nearby Back River impossible. In the end, crews used multiple pumper trucks and nearly a mile of fire-hose to reach across a causeway onto the island. The owner of a cottage, Lisa Parker, rushed to the island as soon as she heard the news. Parker’s family has owned the island for over 50 years.
Nature Moments: Is the Sky Bluer in the Fall?
Maine Audubon - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Is the sky actually a deeper shade of blue in fall? The answer is “yes!” Two light scattering phenomena — Rayleigh Scattering and Mie Scattering — account for the change in the sky color.
Millinocket housing program aims to attract young workers
Mainebiz - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Three downtown Millinocket houses have been bought by the New Hampshire-based Northern Forest Center and another one is under contract in an initiative aimed at closing the gap between the town's evolving revitalization and those who would like to live there. The organization hopes to raise $1 million to buy and renovate 10 houses over the course of the program, which began in May and is expected to last up to seven years. The homes would be rented for 36 months, then sold, recouping the investment. The center has already raised $450,000. One of the keys to recovery of the Katahdin region is attracting and retaining the 25- to 49-year-old age group.
Island School Students Learn Ocean Science By Growing Kelp
Associated Press - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Students in Maine who have been learning about marine science will conclude their project by dropping kelp-growing lines in the water at the start of the winter growing season. The Peaks Island Elementary students have been participating in a program called KELP4KIDS, a 12-week curriculum for second- through fifth-graders. Kelp is grown as a crop in Maine for use in food and other products.
Opinion: Maine does not need a natural gas pipeline from Quebec
Portland Press Herald - Friday, October 20, 2017 

This past month, Gov. LePage again proposed constructing a natural gas pipeline, this time to carry fuel from Quebec to Maine. Unfortunately, this proposal ignores the energy shift currently underway across the United States. The development of cheap, green energy and its proliferation is happening and developing pipelines that carry “dirty” fuels is simply short-sighted. The costs of wind and solar have fallen to the point that they are competitive with traditional energy sources. Therefore, the development of these renewables should be a priority because of the significantly lower health and environmental costs associated with them. ~ Olin Jenner of Portland and Beverly Roxby of Belfast, Sierra Club Maine
Letter: Has anyone seen where the birds went?
Morning Sentinel - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Where have all the birds gone? We live intown in Fairfield and my son lives in the Ridge Road — country setting, woods — and we both see almost no birds in our feeders. Usually the chicadees and gold finches are around all winter. Do they know something that we don’t know? I had one blue jay and the pigeons this week. ~ Alice Gilbert, Fairfield
Letter: Maine needs climate action
Bangor Daily News - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Climate change is already affecting Maine directly. Rising temperatures, which leads to growth in the population of ticks that carry Lyme disease, has affected both our residents and our moose population. Warming waters are hurting the lobster fishing economy. The Trump administration is ignoring the will of more than 8 million Americans and 1,100 health professionals who publicly supported the Clean Power Plan during the public comment period. We must advocate for smart regulation that helps the United States transition to renewable, innovative fuel sources. The Clean Power Plan is smart regulation. ~ Katherine Kirk, Brunswick
Letter: National Solution Needed to help Nation’s ‘Tailpipe'
Times Record - Friday, October 20, 2017 

Maine is the “tailpipe of the nation.” Coal fired plants in the Mid West are causing our air to be unsafe some days and those gases are contributing to the acidification of the Gulf of Maine. The Clean Power Plan would have improved the health of our citizenry and our marine life. It would have also reduced the amount of greenhouse gases being pumped into the planet’s atmosphere and exacerbating $100 billion dollar storms and wildfires. Maine can work to cut pollution produced in Maine but we cannot affect the pollution coming from out of state. We need a national solution. We need to ask our Members of Congress to back a national carbon fee and dividend. ~ Dodie Jones, Citizens’ Climate Lobby-Brunswick
Kids taking charge of the Gulf of Maine’s future
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

[Sponsored Content on BDN] “Maine coastal communities rely heavily on the Gulf of Maine as an economic driver, for recreation, and just as a way of life,” says the Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s LabVenture! Program Manager Meredyth Eufemia Sullivan -- all reasons why it’s a critical ecosystem for kids in Maine to learn about. Fortunately, there’s Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s LabVenture! experience, a hands-on science education program that brings students from across the state to Portland to learn about the Gulf.
Student scientists hit the streets of Old Orchard Beach
Biddeford-Saco-OOB Courier - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Old Orchard Beach conservation commission members joined forces with sixth-grade students from Loranger Memorial School to stencil storm drains throughout the town last week. Students marked more than 100 drains with the messages “Keep Water Clean” and “Drains To Ocean." The goals of the plan were to raise Goosefare Brook’s water quality to state approved standards, protect the stream from future contamination and educate the public about water safety.
New rules approved for New England shrimp fishery, in case it ever reopens
Associated Press - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

New England’s shrimp fishery will be managed differently if it ever reopens. Fishermen haven’t been allowed to catch Maine shrimp since 2013. But the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission approved a new set of restrictions for the fishery Thursday in the event it does one day reopen.
Moscow Board of Selectmen advocates for solar power project
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

The Moscow Board of Selectmen has sent a letter to Massachusetts energy officials supporting affiliates of NextEra Energy Inc. in their bid to provide clean solar power to that state as part of the Massachusetts Clean Energy request for proposals. The Wintergreen Solar Project is proposed for the site of the former Over The Horizon Backscatter Radar Station in Moscow and part of Caratunk, which first was mothballed in 1997, then finally dismantled in 2009. Cianbro Corp., of Pittsfield, and two investors from Massachusetts bought land and buildings owned for decades by the federal government in April 2012 and planned to develop energy-generating plants on the site as well as to attract other businesses. Plans included possible hydro power assets or wind turbines.
Nonesuch, Spurwink rivers could be home to oyster farms
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Two lease applicants are holding a scoping session on Monday, Oct. 23, at the Scarborough Municipal building, 295 U.S. Route 1. The public scoping session “will discuss a proposed aquaculture lease application to raise American/Eastern oysters using suspended culture techniques in three proposed locations." Two of the three proposed locations are in the Nonesuch River in Scarborough and the third is in the Spurwink River on the border of Scarborough and Cape Elizabeth.
Scientists: Big Changes Coming For Fish Crucial To Food Chain
Associated Press - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Interstate regulators are considering altering the way they manage menhaden, including reducing the amount of the fish that can be caught by commercial fishermen. The schooling fish are used in products such as fish oil supplements. U.S. fishermen catch more than a billion pounds of menhaden each year. An Atlantic fishery is looking to rework management of menhaden with an eye toward the fact that scientists say it is one of the most important fish in the sea because of its role in the ocean food chain. The subject's up for a key vote on Nov. 13.
Fisheries Commission Approves Quota On Spiny Dogfish
Associated Press - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Based on the latest stock assessments of spiny dogfish, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission has approved a quota of about 38.2 million pounds of the small shark — about 900,000 pounds less than the quota for the current year. It’s also more than dogfish harvesters usually catch. Fishery Management Plan Coordinator Max Appelman says that’s because of market demand, rather than how many fish are available.
Biomass operator seeks partner to be a win-win neighbor
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

ReEnergy wants to work with a business that could gain from being next to its Maine plants. ReEnergy Biomass Operations owns biomass plants in Fort Fairfield, Ashland, Startton and Livermore Falls. It has filed a request for proposals for a partner with commercial technology to co-locate at one or several of the plants. The intent is, within three years, to increase the profitability of the biomass plants, and either manufacture bio-based materials from wood, or convert the heat and steam from the energy process into other high-value products.
Column: Scoters stop by Pushaw Lake for a visit
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

An enormous flock of dark ducks was visible in the distance as we approached the Deer Isle Bridge. There were thousands of scoters packed into the bay, acting very un-scoter-like. These were surf scoters, and they were unusually restless. I’ve never seen a congregation this colossal. I can’t imagine there is enough food in the channel to feed that many ducks for the winter, so I assume they had just arrived from Canada and would soon disperse. Scoters do not generally feed on fish. They prefer mollusks, crustaceans and sea worms, augmented by a little vegetation. It couldn’t have been a large school of fish that had drawn them into the channel. Weird things happen during migration season. ~ Bob Duchesne
Governor’s attack on land trusts brings good result
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Governor Paul LePage’s attack on land trusts turned out to be very helpful. In response, the land trust community has stepped up to provide lots of information which demonstrates all that they contribute to Mainers and our economy. On October 12, the ACF committee conducted its first session. Ironically, the governor refused to send anyone to participate in the meeting. Maine land trusts offer 1260 miles of hiking and walking trails, 270 miles of mountain biking trails, 570 miles of snowmobile trails, and 345 miles of ATV trails. They provide us with 203 boat launch sites, 62 on the coast and 141 in freshwater along with 210 beaches and swimming areas. Those of us who hunt have to appreciate that land trusts in Maine provide more than 2.34 million acres for us to hunt on – that’s more than 90% of all the acres conserved by land trusts.
Regulators want better data about Northeast lobster fishery
Associated Press - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Interstate fishing managers are starting a new push to get better data about the lobster fishery. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission’s lobster board agreed this week to send proposed changes to management rules out for public comment. The commission says the new rules seek to improve reporting of lobster harvesting and biological data collection. The commission says shortcomings were highlighted during recent protection efforts, such as the preservation of deep sea corals and the creation of a national marine monument in the Atlantic.
One hunting party’s approach finally pays off to find elusive bull moose
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Before noon, we were sure to find the monstrous critter that we’d envisioned as our “Monday moose.” Our group bounded to our trucks and drove into the still-dark woods, eager for sunrise and a fantastic adventure. This was going to be quick. Easy. Right? That’s not exactly how it turned out.
Defoliation by spruce budworm a problem at Maine’s Border
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

Although we have still not seen defoliation by spruce budworm in Maine, surveyors in New Brunswick have, including some right across our border. The eastern spruce budworm is a native moth that feeds on spruce and fir needles as a caterpillar. This species has cyclical populations that build when the host trees mature. Populations reached epidemic levels in Maine, leading to tree growth loss and mortality, three times in the last century. The most recent outbreak collapsed in the late 1980’s. The Province of Quebec has been mapping defoliation from this pest for more than a decade during the current outbreak. In 2017, more than 17.6 million acres of forest were defoliated across the entire province.
Wadsworth Woodlands experts in resource management, client relationships
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, October 19, 2017 

[Sponsored content on BDN website] Wadsworth Woodlands, Inc., is a multi-generational family owned business that has been in operation for 22 years and has over 44 years of forestry experience. We proudly serve small and large landowners and have written land management plans for over 75,000 acres of private land as well as for land and conservation trusts in Maine and New Hampshire.
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