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
Midcoast town clears way for new farm-to-table restaurant
Lincoln County News - Monday, January 14, 2019 

The Damariscotta Planning Board approved Eleanor Kinney’s application to open a farm-to-table restaurant at 27 Main St. on Jan. 7. Kinney of Bremen owns the organic Heart Farm. She said the downtown restaurant, The River House, will likely have 30 seats and feature a wood-fired grill. The restaurant will serve food made with ingredients from local farms, as well as local seafood.
Beet juice reduces need for rock salt as de-icer in Canada. Could the same work in Maine?
Bangor Daily News - Monday, January 14, 2019 

Rock salt, or sodium chloride, has become the go-to ice remover for cold, wintery areas. Though rock salt is inexpensive and effective, it comes with a cost. Salt corrosion damages cars, roads and bridges. There is also an environmental cost. For one, moose are more attracted to the roads — which essentially become an enormous salt-lick — increasing traffic danger to motorists. As rock salt dissolves, it not only helps remove ice from the roads, but it also seeps into the ecosystem, damaging roadside plants and aquatic environments. Some Canadian cities have added beet juice, an unexpected ingredient, into their de-icing regime. Could Maine follow their lead?
Opinion: Use technology to manage Maine’s turkey population
Kennebec Journal - Monday, January 14, 2019 

This fall marks the first time that turkey harvest totals were available on a daily basis using the states’s integrated online tagging system. In the past, wildlife managers and staffers had to manually collect, sort and tally tagging data, often taking many months to report. Tagging data collection has now caught up with modern technology. It is now time for wild turkey management to do the same. With the new tagging technology and the department’s long-established wildlife management units, IF&W should be able to heavily crop over-abundant populations while also protecting others. And they can monitor the progress of turkey harvests on a daily basis. ~ David Trahan, Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine
Column: Harpswell facing up to climate change
Times Record - Monday, January 14, 2019 

As the Maine town with the longest coastline, Harpswell is particularly vulnerable to sea-level rise. But the town government is up to the job, with its dedicated, hard-working Conservation Commission studying the effects of climate change on town roads and wetlands since 2010. There are more than twelve public roads that would be impacted by a 3.3-foot sea rise at considerable cost to the town over the next twenty years. However, in facing the challenges of rising sea-level head-on, early, and publicly, Harpswell’s Conservation Commission is pioneering ways for coastal communities to monitor and mitigate the disruption of climate change. Harpswell’s selectboard recently broadened that role by endorsing a national policy to reduce carbon emissions. ~ Mary Lee Fowler, Citizens Climate Lobby
Letter: Oyster farm application should be approved
Times Record - Monday, January 14, 2019 

My wife and I have owned property on Maquoit Bay for 23 years and we have used our sailboat in the summer months on the bay throughout that time. The assertion that the area is heavily used by lobstermen and is a major source of their income is not supported by our observations. The proponents of the Mere Point Oyster Company have designed their location to open about 12 acres in the middle of the proposed lease area to all forms of navigation and commercial fishing. The Department of Marine Resources will make the decision on the application from MPOC for an aquaculture lease. Based on the information presented, there is convincing evidence that the proposal satisfies the criteria and should be approved. ~ Stephen F. Loebs, Brunswick
Letter: We should welcome Mere Point Oyster Company’s proposal
Times Record - Monday, January 14, 2019 

For almost 20 years, Maquoit Bay has provided this fisherman with idyllic conditions for seeking the elusive striped bass and bluefish. One would think that lobstermen would be attracted to the bay as well, but this is not the case for most of their harvesting season. Seining vessels seeking menhaden and small boats used by clammers do frequent the Upper Bay, but the fact that these harvesters utilize nature’s bounty for economic purposes diminishes any ill feelings or protests by home owners abutting Maquoit Bay. Let’s welcome the fledging Mere Point Oyster Company and its proposal to farm and harvest some of the best oysters on the East Coast. ~ Roger Tuveson, Marblehead, Massachusetts
Letter: Shipping trash
Bangor Daily News - Monday, January 14, 2019 

Cargo containers have to be shipped back to China anyway to pick up the next load, so it “pays” to ship trash back rather than pay to ship empty containers. Some countries require dunnage to be shipped back to the country of origin of goods shipped by containers. Ask the people at Old Town Canoe. ~ John Battick, Dover-Foxcroft
Letter: Farm bill should not be vehicle for unrelated policy
Bangor Daily News - Monday, January 14, 2019 

The Farm Bill contains many benefits to farms, forests and food that make it one of the few pieces of legislation today with bipartisan support. But because of the bill’s momentum, some legislators see it as the perfect vessel for adding unpopular or controversial riders. It’s bad enough that the Farm Bill was used to undermine constitutional checks and balances, but the irony of adding language that prolongs famine in Yemen to a bill about food is unbearable. I encourage Maine farmers and forest owners to stand up and make it known that we do not want our professions and our land to be used as a shield for inhumane policy that has nothing to do food or natural resources. ~ Kyle Burdock, Pembroke
Letter: Scientist, not lawyer, needed at DEP
Bangor Daily News - Monday, January 14, 2019 

Maine’s Department of Environmental Protection needs to be run by a scientist with environmental science expertise. Effective environmental protection is essential to Maine’s largest industry, tourism, as well as its natural resource-based industries of fishing, forestry and agriculture. Maine’s Attorney General’s office has statutory authority to represent all governmental entities, including agencies, in legal matters, whether as plaintiffs or defendants. Duplication of the AG’s legal expertise is unnecessary within the DEP. Legislators should quickly encourage our new governor to withdraw Jerry Reid’s nomination as DEP Commissioner (without prejudice) and replace it with an expert scientist. ~ Ralph Chapman, Brooksville
Maine Forestry Museum looks forward to 2019 as 40th year approaches
Turner Publishing - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

The Maine Forestry Museum’s board is saying Happy New Year as well as many thanks to all its members and volunteers as the museum gears up for its 40th year celebration, which will come in 2020.
Recreational fishing rules to be overhauled under new law
Associated Press - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

The rules that govern recreational marine fishing in the U.S. will get an overhaul under a new law passed by Congress, and the country’s millions of anglers and the groups that stake their livelihoods on them hope the changes will bring better management. The new standards are part of a suite of changes that proponents call the Modern Fish Act that were approved by the House and Senate in December.
Maine proposal would encourage more shellfish research
Associated Press - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Rep. Robert Alley of Beals has a bill, "An Act To Encourage Applied Shellfish Research," which proposes a tweak to municipalities' shellfish conservation ordinances, which currently regulate possession of shellfish and where they can be taken. Alley's proposal would allow research entities to contact research in conjunction with the Maine Department of Marine Resources to support shellfish conservation.
Opinion: Billionaire Tom Steyer’s impeachment ads are a waste of money
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

It is ridiculous, deplorable even, for Tom Steyer to spend tens of millions of dollars on an utterly useless campaign to impeach Trump, regardless of whether you favor impeachment. Even if you wanted to spend your money on politics, why not do something halfway productive? Register new voters, promote civics education, run a campaign to end gerrymandering or finance media literacy. Oh, and I have one question for the environmentalist mogul: Why did he add to his carbon footprint by flying to Iowa to announce he wasn’t running for president? ~ Jennifer Rubin
County residents ask school board to reverse decision ending the potato harvest break
The County - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Dozens of area residents voiced their support Thursday for having the SAD 1 school board reverse its decision to end the potato harvest break in 2019. More than 50 members of the public, many of whom were farmers, teachers or parents, filled the room at the Presque Isle High School cafeteria during the hourlong public hearing, anxiously listening to the folks who addressed the school board on why harvest break matters for both area potato growers and students.
Hundreds brave the cold to attend film festival focused on the environment
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Portsmouth Herald - Hundreds of people braved the cold to attend the second annual Seacoast Environmental Film Festival on Saturday. Held at the Kittery Community Center’s Star Theatre, five films were shown, each with a different theme on the state of the environment and on ways people can help on issues relevant to clean water, ocean plastics, sea level rising, food waste and climate change. Each film, presented by local nonprofits, was followed by a panel discussion featuring experts in the topic of the film.
What a rack! Unique antlers set Allagash buck apart
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Sue Underhill Kelly, who posted a video on the Facebook page of Tylor Kelly’s Camps in Allagash, said she has counted 13 points, but said there may actually be 14 points on the rack of “a truly magnificent buck!” “The buck has shown up at Mark McBreairty’s house for the past several winters. He feeds the deer,” Kelly explained in an email.
Maine delegation reintroduces bill to allow clam, worm digging in Acadia
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Federal legislation aimed at allowing marine harvesting to occur along Acadia National Park’s tidal mudflats has been reintroduced in Congress. All four members of Maine’s congressional delegation have submitted companion bills in the House and Senate. The legislation also would give congressional approval to the 2015 addition of 1,400 acres to Acadia at Schoodic Point, remove use restrictions on a piece of land in Tremont deeded by the park to the town decades ago, and make the Acadia National Park Advisory Commission permanent.
‘Got rats?’ Some say they make the ideal small pet.
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Domestic rats, bred and raised to be friendly and gentle, are held in high esteem by pet owners around the world. However, due to many people’s aversion to wild rats, this fairly low-maintenance, low-cost and intelligent pet often is overlooked. Even a glimpse of a rat’s long, bald tail is enough to give some people the creeps. “It’s like the difference between wolves and your pet dog, or a lion and your pet cat,” rat enthusiast Sarah Levine said, comparing wild rats to domestic rats. “They’re completely different.”
Democrats looking to finally tackle climate impacts to Gulf of Maine
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

As control shifts in Augusta, many welcome a new window to address the threats of warming and ocean acidification. After years of inaction, Maine may finally deal with the impacts of climate change along the coast, including ocean acidification, a byproduct of global warming that represents a potentially catastrophic threat to Maine’s marine harvesters. Lawmakers in the new Democratic majority say they are moving to make up for lost time on climate-related challenges to the Gulf of Maine, which has been the second fastest-warming part of the world ocean for the better part of the past two decades.
Do most Mainers love or hate winter? The verdict is in.
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

In an admittedly unscientific sampling for a very informal survey that took place on a frigid day in Portland last week, the majority of Mainers stopped randomly on the street and asked how they feel about winter gushed about it. (Good thing since they live in a state where it lasts almost half the year.) Their reasons were varied and passionate, from the fact they prefer cold winters to humid summers, to their feelings that hard winters unite us, make us appreciate the quiet in the woods, and give us excuses to throw dinner parties.
Column: Deer hunt still in need of a boost
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

In 2007, Maine hunters killed only 28,884 deer, a huge decline from the 38,153 deer taken in 2002. Several factors contributed to this – lack of protection for winter habitat, a steady increase in predator (coyote) populations and several severe winters. The state can do little to protect deer wintering areas on private property. Efforts at cooperative agreements have fallen far short of expectations. We can’t control the weather either. That leaves us with predators. Most research indicates efforts are largely ineffective at reducing coyote populations; some research even suggests such efforts may have the opposite effect. Locally concentrated efforts are, however, encouraging. But those have been hampered for two decades by the listing under the Endangered Species Act of lynx as threatened. Earlier this month, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced plans to de-list the species. ~ Bob Humphrey
Column: Once the feel of the sport is deep in your bones, can you still teach a beginner?
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

The physics of skiing is on my mind. Time seems to stretch as my body drops toward the hill and my legs swing from me, carving into corduroy. I realign. My skis are back under me and I’m briefly weightless as I pop out of that turn and into another, my weight and balance a mirror of what it was a moment before. Wind whips at my face and frigid air fills my lungs. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. ~ Josh Christie
Letter: Companies send our wealth away
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

I hope everyone is enjoying the latest rate increase from Central Maine Power. CMP is one of Maine’s biggest wealth extractors, being wholly owned by Avangrid, which is 85 percent owned by Ibredrola, a foreign company which cares nothing about your well being. CMP transferred over $100 million to Avangrid in 2016 and $50 million in 2017 as stock dividends. CMP isn’t the only large out-of-state wealth extractor. We have Walmart, Amazon, Spectrum, Hannaford, Shaw’s, McDonald’s, KFC, Irving, Cumberland Farms, Dunkin Donuts, and many more. They extract our wealth and send it to their wealthy owners. Communities with too many extractive companies suffer from a negative cash flow, and that is the reason we don’t prosper as a state. State leaders need to foster competition through locally owned companies, cooperatives, employee-owned companies, and nonprofit organizations. ~ Brad Sherwood, Waterville
Letter: Time has come to price carbon emissions
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, January 13, 2019 

Even though prominent economists and former politicians have for years advocated for pricing carbon emissions, Congress has not done so because it didn’t seem to be politically possible. Finally, in Congress’ last session bills were introduced in both the House and Senate to put a price on carbon emissions. Each of the two energy bills is sponsored by members of Congress from both sides of the aisle. When this effort to price carbon succeeds, the fees collected will be returned to people; harmful gas emissions will be reduced by at least 90 percent by 2050; and 2.1 million new jobs will be created in 10 years. What’s not to like? ~ Fern Stearns, Hallowell
Mainers work and play in the cold weather
Sun Journal - Saturday, January 12, 2019 

Deep cold set in across Maine on Saturday. That didn’t stop Mainers from working — and playing — out in the elements. Up on the West Cove of Moosehead Lake, where the ice is 17 inches thick, spectators, some on snowmobiles, some ice fishing, gathered around a quarter-mile oval track and watched five competitors race Sunday. “I’ve lived here my whole life, so I’m used to the cold, but when I’m in the race car with no jacket or gloves, my adrenaline is pumping,” said Nikki Hamilton, of Greenville Junction.
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