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
Litchfield Farmers’ Club says treasurer ‘drained’ banked accounts; $80,000 missing
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

The Litchfield Farmers’ Club is broke, but its officers say the Litchfield Fair gates still will open Sept. 7-9 for the annual agricultural exhibition. However, the premiums or prizes might be smaller than in previous years. The president and first vice president have said the club’s treasury is down to $1,000 or less, meaning more than $80,000 is missing. A message posted Wednesday evening on the fair’s Facebook page says, “As many of you have heard, the Litchfield Farmer’s Club bank accounts have been drained by our treasurer.”
Editorial: Rampaging across the Maine landscape
Maine Environmental News - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Companies with fossil-fuel power plants and plans to build wind and solar power projects in Maine are continuing to fight Central Maine Power’s proposal to build a 145-mile transmission line through western Maine to wheel electricity from Canada to southern New England. Many environmental groups are concerned about the impacts on wildlife, water quality, and scenic views in wild areas. The energy companies are worried about having their ability to make more money curtailed. In his latest film, "Rampage," Dwayne Johnson has to fight off monstrous, mutated critters as they tear across the landscape destroying everything in their path. The battle of the mutated corporate energy titans to determine which of them gets to slash and gash the Maine landscape into a thatch of power lines and pipelines will continue. Unless The Rock shows up to save the day.
Goats seized as Brunswick animal cruelty case expands
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Brunswick police on Monday seized three goats from the home on River Road, where they had seized 44 dogs and a bird earlier this month. They also charged two more residents with cruelty to animals. Homeowners Robert Enman and Nancy Enman, both 60, were charged Monday with the class D misdemeanors of failing to give animals necessary sustenance, failing to give animals necessary medical attention, failing to give animals proper indoor shelter, failing to give animals humanely clean conditions and endangering the welfare of a child. On Aug. 10, the Enmans’ son, Kyle Enman, and daughter-in-law, Diana Enman, were charged with the same crimes.
Coast Guard offers reward for information about stolen buoy bells
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

The Coast Guard is offering a cash reward for information about the theft of bells from navigational buoys off the Maine coast. Bells have been stolen from nine buoys in Penobscot Bay in the past nine months, according to the Coast Guard. The most recent theft was a 371-pound bell assembly taken from the White Bull Lighted Gong Buoy about two miles east of Bailey Island. The Coast Guard says the bells on buoys “play a vital role in the safe passage of ships and mariners” by helping them navigate during times of reduced visibility. Tampering with aids to navigation is a federal offense.
2-Day Celebration Of Maine Farming Opens In Clinton
Associated Press - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Maine Farm Days is taking place at Misty Meadows Farm in Clinton on Wednesday and Thursday. The event's geared at both farmers and non-farmers and includes things like agribusiness exhibits and equipment dealers as well as animals, food and entertainment. The event also includes a children's learning center, wagon tours and educational speakers. It's part of the state's lineup of summer farm events that take place all over the Maine.
What makes some species more likely to go extinct?
Other - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

The Conversation - Estimates suggest 99.99 percent of all species that have ever lived are now extinct. All species that exist today – including human beings – will invariably go extinct at some point. How vulnerable any one species is to extinction due to human activities or the associated climate change remains sometimes an open question. It is clear that the current rate of extinction is rising well above anything that could be called background level, and is on track to be the Sixth Mass Extinction. The question of how vulnerable any one species may be to extinction is one scientists want to answer quickly, if we’re to have any chance of conserving future biodiversity.
Opinion: We’re guilty of underappreciating Maine’s native brook trout
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Last May, the Maine Legislature wisely decided that native brook trout are worth more than their weight in gold, silver and copper by passing LD 820, the nation’s strictest mining laws. This was in response to a J.D. Irving Ltd. proposal to mine precious metals in Aroostook County. Wild brook trout advocates reminded legislators that the 122nd Legislature passed the heritage fisheries law to protect self-sustaining brook trout waters. Irving’s open-pit mines risk spreading hazardous contaminants to some of Maine’s most cherished trout waters. Others reminded legislators that the state’s native trout fishery has historically generated millions of dollars for our economy by attracting fishermen from all over the world, including former presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower, and baseball legend Ted Williams. ~ Ron Joseph, retired Maine wildlife biologist
Lots of partridge and rabbits killed
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

According to the September 1956 edition of the Maine Outdoorsman and Conservationist newspaper, lots of partridge and rabbits were killed in Maine in 1955.
Deer 35,315
Partridge 185,690
Rabbit 193,525
Woodcock 22,660
Waterfowl 76,180
Gray Squirrel 27,940
Fox 27,940
Raccoon 31,290
Bear 2,275
Pheasant 34,145
Blog: Happy birthday to Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument will celebrate its second birthday with a hootenanny this weekend. And there is plenty to celebrate. After two years of needless delay, highway signs pointing the way to the monument are finally going up and thousands of people are visiting. New businesses have opened. Tourism is growing. Real estate is selling. And people are investing in the region. The Millinocket Marathon is gaining a reputation is one of the best qualifying races for the Boston Marathon. In fact, given all the great travel press the monument has received, it’s high time that the Maine Office of Tourism do its part to boost visitation. We have a jewel in the interior of Maine. We should tell everyone about it. ~ David Farmer
Maine hemp growers have high hopes for new farm bill
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Erica Haywood, along with her husband, Jack, owns and operates LoveGrown Agriculture Research LLC, producing hemp CBD oil, teas and topical products in Farmington. CBD is one of the 60 naturally occurring compounds found in Cannabis, and unlike THC, it does not cause any feelings of getting high if consumed. But under the 2014 f arm b ill still in effect, that distinction does not matter when it comes to federal marijuana law enforcement. “I know the benefits of CBD, but when I looked into the legalities of [growing hemp], I found the 2014 farm bill was the biggest obstacle,” Haywood said. But the Senate’s version of the proposed 2018 farm bill includes an amendment that would legalize the production of industrial hemp.
Editorial: Despite pressure, Baxter State Park should stay ‘forever wild’
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

Baxter State Park is as popular as it has ever been, and Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument is bringing new eyes to the area. It is an exciting time for the Katahdin region, but it is not without conflicting visions for the future, and threats to the park’s character. Baxter officials say they don’t need additional visitors. But it looks like the park is going to get them, particularly with the new national monument next door. Park officials have resisted the temptation to make changes before, and Eben Sypitkowski, the park’s new director, has said that he takes Percival Baxter’s words to heart, so it appears the park is in good hands. It may be 2018 out here, but Baxter State Park remains stuck in the past. And nothing should be allowed to shake it free.
Opinion: Congress should renew Land and Water Conservation Fund, a lifeline for Maine’s outdoors
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

In Maine, the Land and Water Conservation Fund has provided funding for some of our most special places, ensuring access for hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, paddling, snowmobiling and other outdoor pursuits. Regrettably, this vitally important program regularly receives only a fraction of its full funding each year, and will completely expire at the end of September unless Congress acts. The Land and Water Conservation Fund succeeds in large part because it is designed to be inclusive, drawing on the creativity and problem-solving skills of Maine citizens all over the state who are working for a better future in their communities. Renewing this program not only is good for conservation but also makes sense for our economy and the Maine brand. ~ Kate Dempsey, state director, The Nature Conservancy in Maine
Letter: Carbon tax a rational step
Sun Journal - Wednesday, August 22, 2018 

I recently received a letter from Rep. Bruce Poliquin explaining that he voted against a carbon tax because he is concerned about energy costs for Maine families. Poliquin’s vote shows he is actually not concerned about people’s well-being. Nowhere in the letter does he mention the rationale behind the tax: climate change driven by the use of fossil fuels. There has been plenty of examples of changing climate this summer, from massive wildfires to record-breaking temperatures and drought. The costs of these disasters are enormous and are currently born by taxpayers. Impacts to public health are born mostly by the elderly and children, who are vulnerable to bad air and heat stroke. Carbon taxes are a rational, prudent, market-based mechanism to help the nation move to a new energy economy. ~ Jane Costlow, Auburn
5 Ways Trump's Clean Power Rollback Strips Away Health, Climate Protections
Inside Climate News - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

The Trump administration has proposed to replace the nation's landmark climate regulations with a watered-down version that would do next to nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and wouldn't even set a specific national goal. If the new plan survives legal challenges, it would fulfill a campaign pledge to abort the Obama-era Clean Power Plan. And in combination with the freezing of automotive emissions standards announced a few weeks ago, it would gut any attempt to achieve through federal regulations the goals of the Paris climate agreement.
Lidar Data Acquisition Projects for USGS 3D Elevation Program
Other - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Quantum Spatial, Inc., the nation’s largest independent geospatial data firm, is working on more than two dozen LiDAR collection projects designed to address the country’s need for high-quality topographic data in support of the U.S. Geological Survey 3D Elevation Program program. The 3DEP program helps agencies and organizations collect geospatial information for a variety of uses, including wildfire management, natural resources conservation, and coastal and riverine protection. Since 2010, QSI has performed several Lidar projects covering more than 23,500 square miles throughout Maine.
Portland, S. Portland seek climate plan bidders
Forecaster - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

More than 30 firms are showing interest in helping Portland and South Portland create a Climate Action and Adaptation Plan. Bids are scheduled to be opened Aug. 28 at Portland City Hall in a joint request for proposals for what is expected to be a $220,000 study with a key goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent from current levels by 2050. It is expected the winning bidder will take 18 months to develop a plan to both reduce energy use and prepare for the effects of climate change, including sea-level rises, more frequent and violent storms and warming water temperatures.
Anger flares over Waterville’s plastic bag ordinance debate
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Voters will get to decide for themselves whether they want to prohibit large retailers from dispensing plastic bags, since city councilors voted 5-1 Tuesday to override Mayor Nick Isgro’s veto of a vote they previously took to put the referendum on the November ballot. Tuesday’s vote followed lengthy comments, mostly from people who were angry about the proposed plastic bag ordinance that would prohibit retailers larger than 10,000-square-feet in size from dispensing plastic bags.
Hike: Mount OJI in Baxter State Park
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Rising 3,434 feet above sea level, Mount OJI is one of the many mountains in Baxter State Park and features an 8-mile hike with breathtaking views from its ridge. The mountain got its name from three rock slides on its southwestern slope that used to resemble the letters “O” “J” and “I,” according to the AMC Maine Mountain Guide. However, a major storm in 1932 prompted the slides to shift, distorting the letters.
Water Quality: How Are Conditions in Maine's Rivers, Lakes and Ocean?
Maine Public - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Maine Calling looks at the water quality in our lakes, rivers and ocean, and how they measure up for human recreation and environmental health. Guests: Nick Bennett, Natural Resources Council of Maine; Scott Williams, Lake Stewards of Maine; and Don Witherill, Maine Department of Environmental Protection.
Trump Coal Power Plan Could Increase Use of Forest Biomass as Coal Replacement
Maine Environmental News - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Today the Trump Administration released its long-awaited replacement to the Clean Power Plan. Trump’s proposal would give states flexibility in how they regulate coal plants and relax pollution rules for power plants that need upgrades. In response, Dr. Mary S. Booth, Director of the Partnership for Policy Integrity, said, “This plan would reverse the gains we have seen in the power sector, which has seen progress in reducing CO2 emissions in recent years. Trump’s proposal will allow dirty and inefficient coal plants to continue to pollute our air and accelerate global warming....Burning biomass decreases overall plant efficiency and thus increases emissions, the opposite of what the plan is supposed to achieve. No amount of pretending will make it otherwise.”
EPA moves to dramatically cut regulation of coal power
Associated Press - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

The Trump administration moved to dismantle another major piece of President Barack Obama’s environmental legacy on Tuesday, proposing to dramatically scale back restrictions on climate-changing emissions from coal-fired power plants even as it acknowledged that could lead to more premature deaths and serious illnesses. Bill Wehrum, head of the EPA’s air office, said the administration rejects any suggestion the agency has a broad legal duty to combat climate change through regulation of power grids or promotion of cleaner energy.
Maine honors A.E. Sampson and Son with entrepreneurial excellence award
Penobscot Bay Pilot - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

Jula and Paul Sampson, owners of A. E. Sampson and Son, in Warren, were recently honored by the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry with an award for Entrepreneurial Excellence. The business specializes in locally milled wood paneling and flooring made with Maine wood and has been in operation for more than decades.
Trump Moves To Let States Regulate Coal Plant Emissions
National Public Radio - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

The Trump administration has moved to formally replace the Clean Power Plan, an environmental regulation that former President Barack Obama once lauded as the single-most important step America has ever taken to fight climate change. The proposal, called the Affordable Clean Energy Rule, would give individual states more authority to make their own plans for regulating greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants. Environmentalists say the new proposal would be bad for public health. If it takes effect, "polluters can avoid making the large, life-saving reductions in smog and soot pollution that the Plan would have achieved," said Earthjustice President Trip Van Noppen.
Trump plan scales back Obama’s coal emissions standards
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

The Trump administration on Tuesday came out with new rules scaling back Obama-era constraints on coal-fired power plants, striking at one of the former administration’s legacy programs to rein in climate-changing fossil-fuel emissions. Dylan Voorhees, clean energy director of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, said the administration’s move would roll back one of the most significant steps taken in the U.S. to clean up the air and address climate change. Tuesday’s move opens a public-comment period on the proposal before any final administration action.
These Maine paddlers plan to build a 100-mile network of campsites on the Penobscot River
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, August 21, 2018 

According to the group’s mission statement, the Penobscot River Paddling Trail “seeks to establish and maintain a paddling, camping and educational trail down the main stem of the Penobscot River.” To that end, on Saturday volunteers delivered a picnic table to one site while doing work on a second location, at the Penobscot Salmon Club in Brewer. Cloe Chunn said aiming for 10 campsites over the 100 miles would be adequate if relatively few people were on the river, because a 10-mile paddle in a day is manageable. But she said she hopes the group is able to establish more sites than that, and can find members to act as stewards of those locations.
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