November 18, 2018  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Saturday, November 17, 2018 

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
Friends of Baxter State Park auction, thru Dec 5
Announcement - Friday, November 16, 2018 

Own a piece of Baxter State Park history: retired Park signs and other special items. Proceeds are split between Baxter State Park and Friends of Baxter State Park. Runs November 8 - December 5.
Northern Forest Canoe Trail auction, thru Dec 2
Announcement - Thursday, November 15, 2018 

Win paddles, tents, maps and more in the Northern Forest Canoe Trail online auction, thru December 2.
Petition: Restore the head of children's health protection
Action Alert - Thursday, November 15, 2018 

Dr. Ruth Etzel is the EPA's top expert on children's health. A pediatrician and epidemiologist, her job is to protect children from toxic chemicals, pesticides and lead in our environment. But a month ago with no explanation, Trump's acting EPA chief Andrew Wheeler abruptly put her on leave. Tell Wheeler: Restore Dr. Ruth Etzel to the Office of Children's Health Protection. ~ CREDO Action
Petition: Convert BIW to deal with climate change
Action Alert - Thursday, November 15, 2018 

Climate crisis would be addressed by conversion of Bath Iron Work's considerable industrial capacity to building public transportation and/or renewable energy infrastructure.
Petition: No coal exports from military bases
Action Alert - Thursday, November 15, 2018 

Interior Secretary Zinke is the subject of more than one dozen federal investigations. Despite this, he is continuing to make reckless decisions that threaten the country. Speak out against Zinke's plans to use military bases as export terminals for coal and natural gas.
Saving Thoreau’s Birthplace, Nov 18
Event - Posted - Sunday, November 11, 2018 

Lucille Stott, Brunswick, Maine, resident, former president of Thoreau Farm Trust, and former editor of The Concord Journal, presents her new book, “Saving Thoreau’s Birthplace: How Citizens Rallied to Bring Henry Out of the Woods.” At Thoreau Farm, Concord, MA, November 18, 2 pm.
Hike: Hatchet Mountain Preserve, Nov 17
Event - Posted - Saturday, November 10, 2018 

Scott Dickerson and Janet Readfield will lead a hike while sharing the history of the mountain with majestic views. At Hatchet Mountain Preserve, Hope, November 17, 9-11 am. Sponsored by Coastal Mountains Land Trust.
National Take a Hike Day, Nov 17
Event - Posted - Saturday, November 10, 2018 

National Take a Hike Day is observed annually on November 17. With over 60,000 miles of trails in the National Trail System across the 50 states, there is no lack of opportunity to take a hike.
Dawnland, Nov 16
Event - Posted - Friday, November 9, 2018 

Screening and panel discussion of the documentary Dawnland about how Maine government systematically forced Native American children from their homes and placed them with white families. At USM, Portland, November 16, 5:30 pm, free but get tickets in advance.
Raptors Program, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 8, 2018 

Birder and photographer Don Reimer will give a visual presentation on Maine raptors. At Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, Rockland, November 15, 6:30 pm.
Rethinking Strip Redevelopment to Strengthen Your Community, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 8, 2018 

Learn how towns can improve the appearance and functionality of commercial corridors to bring in new residents, employees and activity. At Topsham Library, November 15, 4-7 pm. GrowSmart Maine members $10, public $20, students $5.
Atlantic Salmon Restoration, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 8, 2018 

Denise Buckley, US Fish and Wildlife Service senior staff biologist, will chronicle the response to the listing of Atlantic salmon in eight of Maine’s rivers as endangered under the Endangered Species Act in December 2000. At at Belfast Library, November 15, 6:30 pm.
The Land that Sustains Us: Stories from the Field, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 8, 2018 

A live storytelling night with 3 Maine farmers. At Maine Historical Society, November 15, 6-8:30 pm, $10 for Maine Historical Society and Maine Farmland Trust members, $15 general.
Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument management plan meeting, Nov 14
Event - Posted - Wednesday, November 7, 2018 

The National Park Service is developing a management plan for Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. Public meeting at Portland Marriott at Sable Oaks, South Portland, November 14, 6-8 pm.
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News Items
Letter: Stop killing female moose
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, November 7, 2018 

I have a question for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. If we are worried about losing moose due to ticks, why does the state issue 450 permits to kill cows (female moose) only? If you shoot one cow moose, you shoot two or three. That would mean 900 to 1,340 extra moose are killed for no reason. Can we eliminate the week of cows only to keep our moose herd healthy? ~ Pat Labbe, Fort Kent
Letter: Use electric cars
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, November 7, 2018 

Electric cars have been an idea nationwide for years now, and the industry has been growing, especially for Mainers. Electric cars are cheaper to run, they improve the environment, and they are fun to drive. As an 18-year-old with a license and a car, it is a hassle to refill my gas at least every week, because of commutes to school and other places. This goes for many Mainers as well. In the future, if one could just plug in your car for it to run without putting in gas, that would save transportation money. It’s time for more production of electric cars. Technology has improved the world for centuries. Now it is time to add to list of improvements by using electric cars. ~ Ben Southwick, Dixmont
Waterville approves plastic bag ban by fewer than 150 votes
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

Voters on Tuesday approved a proposal to prohibit larger retail and commercial businesses from dispensing plastic carryout bags in a 3,052-2,906 vote — a difference of 146 votes. The question on the ballot asked if voters wished to enact a proposed ordinance establishing a ban on providing free carryout plastic bags to a customer at the point of departure in any retail or commercial establishment with a retail or commercial space at or exceeding 10,000 square feet. The Sustain Mid-Maine Coalition initiated the plastic bag ban. Bath, York, Freeport, Brunswick, Kennebunk, Saco, Belfast, Rockland, Blue Hill and Manchester have banned plastic bags. Portland, South Portland, Topsham, Cape Elizabeth and Falmouth have placed a 5-cent fee on plastic shopping bags to discourage their use.
Salmon farm foes all lose council races in Belfast
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

Farmed salmon was not on the ballot but nevertheless seemed to win big in Belfast on Tuesday, after the three city council candidates who fought the proposed fish farm each lost bids for municipal office. The hard-fought race was widely seen as a referendum on Nordic Aquafarm’s proposed land-based salmon farm, a development plan that has bitterly divided the midcoast city of 6,700 and its environs.
Editorial: One less excuse to not deal with lead
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

It is never safe for children to have any level of lead in their blood. Lead poisoning can result in a decreased IQ, decreased bone and muscle growth, damaged hearing, and problems with the nervous system and kidneys. It is not possible to reverse these health consequences. But it is possible to prevent them. That’s why it’s important for landlords in Bangor and around the state to know about a new program that rolled out Nov. 1. Property owners can now apply to the Maine State Housing Authority for funding to help remove lead in their rental units.
10 outdoorsy books for stormy days, or holiday gifts
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

Cold, rainy, windy and gloomy — that’s been the past week or so. And in my opinion, the only thing to do during that type of weather is curl up with a cup of tea and a good book. These books are about outdoor exploration, the natural world, adventure, and many of them inspired me:
• “Eiger Dreams: Ventures Among Men and Mountains” by Jon Krakauer
• “The Snow Leopard” by Peter Matthiessen
• “Nine Mile Bridge: Three Years in the Maine Woods” by Helen Hamlin
• “State of Wonder” by Ann Patchett
• “Encounters with the Archdruid” by John McPhee
• “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail” by Cheryl Strayed
• “The Maine Woods” by Henry David Thoreau
• “No Limits but the Sky: The Best Mountaineering Stories from Appalachia Journal” edited by Christine Woodside
• “Annapurna: A Woman’s Place” by Arlene Blum
• “A Naturalist at Large: The Best Essays of Bernd Heinrich”
Low-stress cattle handling hot topic at Maine’s upcoming Cattlemen’s College
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

Can cattle be handled and moved around without all the hooting and hollering that cattlemen are known for? They can, some experts say, and doing so can mean better meat. Known as low-stress stockmanship, it will be a hot topic at the second annual Cattlemen’s College is slated for Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, in Charleston and Orono.
Commentary: You probably had plastic for breakfast
Bloomberg News - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

We know almost nothing about the health effects of something most of us probably eat every day: plastic. Scientists just a couple of weeks ago announced the first preliminary evidence that small bits of plastic are getting into us, though this was long suspected given that much of what we eat and drink is stored or served in it. Unknown are the health ramifications.
Letter: Climate change is not a political issue, but we can differ on what to do about it
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 

The scientific studies that show that humans are causing global temperatures to rise, oceans to swell, weather patterns to change, species to migrate and pollutants to clog our air are not debatable. There is global consensus among scientists that humans are causing the atmospheric climate and our ecosystems to change. You do not have to be a member of one political party or another to accept the facts about climate change. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still have an opinion on what to do about it. Don’t consider climate science a matter of political opinion. Use your political opinion instead to voice what we should do about it. ~ Katherine Harrelson, Portland
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approves Kennebunkport dredging
Journal Tribune - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Maintenance dredging of the Cape Porpoise Harbor federal navigation project in Kennebunkport will be performed during 2019 and 2020. According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, a private contractor will employ a mechanical dredge and scows to remove material and then take it to either the Cape Arundel Disposal Site or the Portland Disposal Site. The request for dredging was made by the town of Kennebunkport as deteriorating conditions have made navigation of a dredged channel difficult leading to the sea below the highway bridge at Kennebunkport.
Rangeley Lakes boat inspection season closes with no invasive plants found
Turner Publishing - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Volunteers for Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust patrolled more than 90 miles of shoreline in the Rangeley Lakes Region looking for invasive plants. Not one has been found. Taking to their kayaks or canoes, teams of patrollers paddled along the shoreline mapping plants or the lack of throughout the months of August and September, when the plants are at their peak.
U.N. says Earth’s ozone layer is healing from damage
Associated Press - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Earth’s protective ozone layer is finally healing from damage caused by aerosol sprays and coolants, a new United Nations report says. The ozone layer had been thinning since the late 1970s. Scientists raised the alarm and ozone-depleting chemicals were phased out worldwide. The Southern Hemisphere lags a bit and its ozone layer should be healed by mid-century.
Some of Maine’s great blue herons wintering in Haiti
Portland Press Herald - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Maine’s great blue herons are flying out of the state and heading for warmer climes before the snow starts to fall. But the birds are not wintering in the Carolinas or even Florida. They’re heading farther south – into the Caribbean. According to a post Monday night on the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife’s Facebook page, some great blue herons are spending the winter in Haiti.
Bangor OKs $8,600 study to look into solar power on city property
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Bangor city councilors have agreed to spend $8,600 to study how much it would cost the city to build and operate solar arrays on municipal properties, as well as what energy savings would come from those investments. “We have a lot of land, some of it not for building,” City Manager Catherine Conlow said during the meeting. “Some of it might be opportune.”
Judge approves $3.2 million pollution fine for German shipping company
Portland Press Herald - Monday, November 5, 2018 

In July 2017, the Coast Guard boarded a 606-foot cargo ship called the MV Marguerita in Portland Harbor. An inspector found evidence that the crew had been dumping oily water into the ocean, a violation of the international treaty, and falsifying required records of oil discharges. The environmental crimes unit of the U.S. Department of Justice filed charges against the shipping management company MST Mineralien Schiffarht Spedition und Transport and ship owner Reederei MS Marguerita. The company has a long history in Maine’s paper industry and makes regular trips to Portland. The German shipping company has pleaded guilty in federal court in Portland to covering up illegal dumping of oily water, and the court-approved deal opens the door for whistle-blowing crew members to receive a cut of the $3.2 million fine.
Wild & Scenic Film Festival a Wild Success
Other - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Over 500 people converged on Friends of Casco Bay’s 11th Anniversary Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Saturday in Portland. They laughed, gasped, and applauded 15 amazing films, including some by local filmmakers whose work wowed the crowd. Here are photos.
Young bull moose runs across the UMaine campus
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 5, 2018 

While driving to basketball practice Sunday morning, University of Maine junior John Williams was shocked to see a young bull moose trotting along Flagstaff Road on campus, between D.P. Corbett and Murray halls. Williams, one of several student managers for the men’s basketball team, managed to grab his phone and shoot a brief video of the moose, which was moving along at a rapid clip.
German Company Fined For Illegal Discharges In Atlantic
Associated Press - Monday, November 5, 2018 

A federal judge has ordered a shipping company that illegally discharged wastewater to pay a $3.2 million criminal fine and institute an environmental compliance plan. German shipping company MST pleaded guilty Monday to obstruction of justice and maintaining false records to conceal pollution from the M/V Marguerita, which made ports of call in Portland, Maine. Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Bossert Clark called the company a "repeat offender'' that has shown "contempt for the rule of law.'' MST was convicted of similar environmental crimes in 2016. In Maine, the company installed a system that bypassed pollution prevention control equipment, allowing discharges of oily mixtures and wastewater in 2016 and 2017.
Aquarium Says Feds Should Include New England Turtle Deaths In Status Evaluation
Associated Press - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Scientists from the New England Aquarium say sea turtle deaths off the New England coast should play a role in a federal government decision about whether a large turtle's endangered status should be reconsidered. NOAA is evaluating whether to keep the Atlantic Ocean's leatherback sea turtles "endangered'' or lower their status to "threatened.'' The aquarium says more than 200 of the turtles have been entangled in marine ropes since 2005. The aquarium announced on Nov. 3 that it had determined a 420-pound leatherback that had stranded earlier in the week died in part from ingesting plastic and suffering an entanglement injury.
Hunters have bagged more than 8,000 deer after 8 days of firearms season
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 5, 2018 

After eight days of firearms hunting for deer, Maine hunters have tagged an average of about 1,000 deer per day, according to wildlife biologist Nathan Bieber of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Last year, a total of 27,233 deer were harvested in Maine using all methods: conventional firearms, archery equipment and black powder weapons.
PUC won't decide CMP's $950M transmission line project until March
Mainebiz - Monday, November 5, 2018 

The three-member Maine Public Utilities Commission issued an order on Friday that extends its review of Central Maine Power's $950 million New England Clean Energy Connect transmission line project into next year. In their procedural order the commissioners outline a revised schedule for testimony, technical conferences and hearings related to CMP's proposed 145-mile transmission to deliver hydro-power from Canada to serve customers in Massachusetts. The new schedule postpones PUC's decision on the project until at least March 2019.
Falmouth, Brunswick activists get conservation awards
Forecaster - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Two area residents were recognized by the Natural Resources Council of Maine last month for their contributions to protecting the state’s environment. At NRCM’s annual Conservation Leadership Awards Oct. 17, Horace “Hoddy” Hildreth, of Falmouth, received the Lifetime Achievement Award. Brunswick resident Robin Robinson received the People’s Choice Award for creating what the NRCM called “a flourishing online educational community of people who share photos and information” about Maine’s wild birds.
UMaine team researching ways to help farmers adapt to climate change
Bangor Daily News - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Farming has always been a risky and unpredictable way to make a living, and according to researchers at the University of Maine in Orono, fluctuating weather conditions associated with climate change are only adding to the unpredictability. Dr. Eric Gallandt, professor of weed ecology at the University of Maine, is part of a team sharing in a $500,000, three-year United States Agriculture and Food research grant looking at how to develop the tools and informational resources to help Maine’s small and medium-sized farms better cope with climate-change related issues.
Woods, mill tour will focus on sustainable Maine forest use
Mainebiz - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Designers and builders who work with wood will get a chance to learn from those who grow, harvest and mill it Thursday on the Maine Wood + Sustainability Tour, sponsored by Local Wood WORKS, a partnership of organizations focused on sustainable Maine forests. The daylong professional workshop will visit woodlands and a sawmill in New Gloucester, a Yarmouth logging operation conducted with low-impact equipment, and the Friends School in Cumberland, which is a passive house design using extensive wood paneling. There will also be a lunchtime panel discussion with Theresa Kerchner, executive director of the Kennebec Land Trust; Ken Laustsen, a biometrician and expert in sustainable forestry; and Lloyd Irland, an expert on wood markets. Billed as "a day in the woods and mills in southern Maine," the tour's aim is to help build momentum for strengthening Maine's brand for quality in forest and wood products.
Why Eric Brakey is bashing Angus King over energy issues
Maine Environmental News - Monday, November 5, 2018 

Eric Brakey, who is running against incumbent Angus King for US Senate, has been attacking King for supporting renewable energy and taking funds from energy companies. Brakey says he works from Maine "remotely for our small family business." Eric Brakey's so-called small family business is Brakey Energy, which according to the firm’s website "provides comprehensive energy management services to Ohio's most energy intensive companies.” Matt Brakey, president of Brakey Energy, is Eric’s brother. In April 2018, Matt Brakey held a fundraiser in Ohio for Eric. Company employees were "invited" to be a sponsor or host by donating $500 to $2700. Open Secrets reports that Brakey Energy is Eric Brakey’s biggest single donor. Follow the money.
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