June 19, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 19, 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
Save Right Whales
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 19, 2019 

New England’s iconic whale is on the brink of extinction. A bill in Congress called Scientific Assistance for Very Endangered (“SAVE”) Right Whales could help this key species recover. ~ Conservation Law Foundation
Water: What is has to teach us, Jun 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 18, 2019 

Learn about fresh water ecosystems and new aquaculture operations in the MidCoast region. At Topsham Public Library, June 25, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Proposed Coyote Center, Jun 24
Event - Posted - Monday, June 17, 2019 

Biologist Geri Vistein will share an informative film about the future Coyote Center in Maine, followed by a discussion of Maine’s coyotes. At Lithgow Public Library, Augusta, June 24, 6:30 pm.
Teen Wilderness Expedition, July 23-25
Announcement - Sunday, June 16, 2019 

The Teen Wilderness Expedition is a 3-day, 2-night, all-inclusive adventure for 12-16 year olds at Little Lyford Lodge, July 23-25. Offered by Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District and Appalachian Mountain Club.
Maine State Museum hosts Bike Day, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Join the Maine State Museum, Bicycle Coalition of Maine and the Maine State Library in a free family event to commemorate the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote and learn about the benefits of safe, relaxed bike riding. At Maine State Museum, June 22, 10 am - 1 pm.
Woodland Management with Birds in Mind, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

A Forestry for Maine Birds workshop for landowners, foresters and loggers interested in learning how they can support Maine’s forest songbirds. At Somerset County Cooperative Extension office, Skowhegan, and on the adjacent Yankee Woodlot Demonstration Forest, June 22, 9 am - noon.
Hike Puzzle Mt., Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

A moderate to strenuous hike of 8.5 miles. Cross several exposed granite boulders and ledges offering views of the Sunday River ski area, Grafton Notch, and the Presidentials, June 22, pre-register. Sponsored by Appalachian Mountain Club.
Androscoggin River Canoe & Kayak River Race, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

This event is open to all to launch canoes, kayaks, paddle boards, (and more) into the Androscoggin River and complete one of three courses of varying length and challenge. At Festival Plaza, Auburn, June 22, 9 am, $15 for single paddler, $25 for a double, benefits Androscoggin Land Trust.
Plants of Corea Heath, Jun 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Join Jill Weber, botanist and co-author of The Plants of Acadia National Park, to learn about carnivorous plants, orchids, stunted trees and shrubs and cotton-grass. At Corea Heath, Goldsboro, June 22, 8:30 am. Sponsored by Downeast Audubon.
Maine Wildlife Park open house, Jun 21
Event - Posted - Friday, June 14, 2019 

The Maine Wildlife Park in Gray will hold an open house with free admission, June 21, 5-8 pm. Feeding times for moose, lynx, foxes, cougars, vultures and bears will be posted.
Call for a presidential primary debate on climate change
Action Alert - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez has rejected a presidential primary debate on climate change. 15 Democratic presidential candidates have joined the call. So can you. ~ CREDO Action
Trekking through Time
Announcement - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

From June through October, Lakes Environmental Association, Loon Echo Land Trust, Greater Lovell Land Trust, Upper Saco Valley Land Trust, and Western Foothills Land Trust will host the Trekking through Time Series. Once a month throughout the summer and early fall, each organization will host a historical tour of one of its conservation properties.
Help document impact on shell middens, Jun 18
Announcement - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 

Many cultural artifacts of Maine's first coastal residents are preserved in shell middens, but these sites are disappearing as sea levels rise, collectors dig into the middens, and visitors walk on them. Maine Midden Minders is developing a database of erosion conditions at middens. Volunteer training at Coastal Rivers’ Education Center, Damariscotta, June 18, 3-7 pm.
“Dog-Friendly Hikes in Maine” book launch, Jun 18
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 

Book signing and presentation for “Dog-Friendly Hikes in Maine” by Aislinn Sarnacki, which contains detailed descriptions and maps of 35 hikes across Maine that are ideal for dogs and their owners. At Epic Sports, Bangor, June 18, 5-7:30 pm.
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News Items
Climate Change: What do Recent Dire Reports Mean for Maine?
Maine Public - Monday, December 17, 2018 

Our panel of experts shares insights on the latest dire climate change reports, what they mean for Maine—and what individuals can do to help reduce their impact on the planet.
Maine birders embrace a holiday tradition that spans more than 100 years
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 17, 2018 

A holiday tradition for many bird enthusiasts, the Audubon Christmas Bird Count is the nation’s longest-running community science bird project, dating back more than 100 years. During the count — which is held for three weeks around Christmas each year — birders conduct organized bird surveys throughout the country, then submit the data to the National Audubon Society, which uses the information to pinpoint trends in bird populations and ranges. The society also provides the data online for anyone who’d like to use it. The count takes place during the holiday season because it was originally created as an alternative to what was known as the Christmas “Side Hunt,” a tradition in which people would compete to shoot birds and other animals.
How Ocean Heatwaves Are Threatening The Gulf Of Maine
Other - Monday, December 17, 2018 

The Gulf of Maine is currently experiencing its third-warmest year in 37 years. This anomalous warming has only been exceeded during ocean heatwaves in 2012 and 2016. Warming in the Gulf of Maine suddenly accelerated in 2004 so that the Gulf is now warming 99% faster than the rest of the world's oceans. While the slower-paced warming in the 1980s created temperatures that were ideal for lobster reproduction and helped expand the regional fishery, lobster landings for this flagship U.S. fishery dropped by nearly 20% last year. By 2050, lobster populations in the Gulf of Maine may dwindle to two-thirds of their current size.
Opinion: The Tom Hennessey I’ll always remember
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 17, 2018 

For a number of years in the 1980s, I wrote a weekly column for the Bangor Daily News on Maine agriculture. It appeared at the top of the op-ed page and always included some form of artwork along with the text. Much of the artwork was drawn by Tom Hennessy. He was a great storyteller not only with his artwork, but in his own outdoor writing. ~ David Bright
LePage dumping budget on Mills
Maine Environmental News - Monday, December 17, 2018 

For years, Maine Governor Paul LePage has been dumping on Attorney General and Gov.-elect Janet Mills. Now the outgoing LePage Administration is preparing an exhaustive budget for the incoming Mills Administration, which LePage plans to dump on Mills soon. The proposed budget is not expected to propose any new funding for land conservation and environmental programs. LePage is termed out of the office of governor, having served two terms. He has said he is moving to Florida. However, he has also threatened to return to Maine to run against Mills in four years.
LePage mostly made good on his promise to improve Maine’s business climate
Bangor Daily News - Monday, December 17, 2018 

Maine business leaders generally agree that Gov. Paul LePage delivered on his campaign promise to improve the state’s business climate. While he struggled to keep Maine’s legacy paper industry viable or to seal deals to lure global companies to Maine, he worked aggressively outside the public spotlight to make state government more responsive to business needs. Businesspeople said it is difficult to attribute a specific positive or negative business outcome to a governor. But they agreed LePage’s tight fiscal hold on state government instilled confidence within the state’s business community. “His legacy and [the positive] things that happened will unfortunately be overshadowed by the lack of collaboration and the strife with the Legislature as well as some comments that were made,” said Dana Connors, president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce.
Portland’s waterfront concerns a test for rest of state
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 17, 2018 

A possible development moratorium on Portland’s waterfront is a test case for competing coastal uses in communities across Maine. “Portland is a bellwether city. Whatever happens in Portland will have a ripple effect across the state,” said Monique Coombs, director of marine programs at Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association, an industry-led group that advocates for inshore fishermen. The Portland City Council is due to vote Monday on a six-month moratorium on new commercial construction on the water side of Commercial Street, where most of the city’s piers and wharves are. The construction ban is a response to a citizen referendum that would prohibit any waterfront development that did not have a direct water use.
Letter: Sen. Collins silent on impending climate disaster
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 17, 2018 

Twice by phone, twice by email, I have asked Sen. Susan Collins over recent weeks if she would take a stand on the dire predictions regarding global warming. I’ve asked if she would call out the leaders of the Republican Party for their resolute denial that climate change is real and is largely fueled by human activity. If she decided not to take such a stand, I asked that she explain why. I’ve heard nothing from her. Judge Brett Kavanaugh has had an abysmal record on climate-change issues, yet she voted to approve his Supreme Court nomination. Now she is silent on the sidelines as her party’s leaders are recklessly ignorant and/or so devoted to campaign dollars from the fossil fuel industry that they imperil the entire planet. ~ Robert M. Schaible, Portland
Letter: To reduce pollution, use tides, nuclear-powered ships
Portland Press Herald - Monday, December 17, 2018 

In a Dec. 1 letter, a reader named wrote concerning nuclear power and viable options to reduce pollution. One method is to utilize the huge hydro energy power in the Gulf of Maine with the daily 28-foot rise and fall of the tide. An underwater hydro turbine could send electrical power via underwater cable to shore. Nuclear-powered commercial ships would also reduce pollution. This solution has already successfully been used by the U.S. Maritime Administration. ~ Herbert Phelps, South Portland
Letter: Climate not only consideration with CMP project
Kennebec Journal - Monday, December 17, 2018 

Climate change is serious but must not trump other impacts from Central Maine Power’s plan to build a transmission line through the western Maine mountains. CMP has not accepted all measures to mitigate impacts on the environment, natural resources and scenic views. The transmission line will destroy 2,200 acres of forest that removes many metric tons of carbon dioxide annually and produces enough oxygen for 40,000 people to breath each year. ~ John Nicholas, Winthrop
Blog: At the whim of a beast
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

2017 and 2018 may be remembered as atrocious years for America socially and politically, but I argue the most consequential disaster of all has been our country’s retreat from participation and leadership of global climate talks. It is foolish, arrogant, embarrassing, condescending, irresponsible and dangerous behavior for a world power to exhibit. We pollute and waste more per citizen than anywhere else in the world, yet we back away from even discussing changing our ways as a nation. The planet we live on is an entity far more powerful than our species alone, but it is not unaffected by our actions. Let’s make 2019 a turning point in Maine. ~ James Tatum Gale
MTI seeks innovative ideas for Forest Resource Challenge
Turner Publishing - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

The Maine Technology Institute has announced a request for responses to the Emerging Technology Challenge for Maine’s Forest Resources. The goal of the challenge is to deploy a forest industry technology in Maine, preferably co-located at an existing industrial facility, where forest biomass is used in the production of a value-added product for sale into a well-defined, promising market. MTI will award up to $1.5 million in grants to challenge winners.
Here’s What Conservatives Say Are Outgoing Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s Biggest Accomplishments
Other - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Daily Caller - President Donald Trump announced Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s resignation Saturday amid a slew of ethics investigations into the former Navy SEAL. Among Zinke’s major accomplishments were rolling back restrictive Obama-era land use policies, restructuring the Interior Department and how it does business and implementing Trump’s “energy dominance” agenda. Republican Utah Rep. Rob Bishop, chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources, said, “We owe him a debt of gratitude.” Zinke’s likely successor, the Interior’s current deputy secretary David Bernhardt, will oversee the opening of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling.
Longtime BDN artist, columnist Tom Hennessey dies at 81
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Tom Hennessey of Hampden, a man whose paintings memorialized the traditional Maine outdoor activities that he loved, and who worked as an artist and columnist for Bangor Daily News readers for 54 years, died Friday after a year-long battle with hemochromatosis. He was 81. “Tom was a colleague at the News but we also became great friends fishing and hunting,” said Bangor Daily News Publisher Richard J. Warren. “He became a mentor for me in conservation and field sports.”
Fiberight plant will not accept waste until at least April
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Despite the construction of Fiberight Technology’s waste processing facility falling a year behind schedule, partnering towns will not have to shoulder extra costs for the delays. The Hampden plant is now due to open in April 2019 and ramp up to full capacity in June, according to Fiberight CEO Craig Stuart-Paul. Local officials remain hesitant to embrace the new timeline with full confidence, however. The project, which promises to divert garbage from landfills by turning it into energy, has been pushed back at least once before. Initially, it was expected to begin accepting trash in April 2018, then October 2018, and now April 2019. Stuart-Paul attributed the delays to harsh winter weather.
Moosehead Lake regional fisheries biologist recognized for 30 years on the job
Piscataquis Observer - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Gov. Paul LePage honored Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife fisheries biologist Tim Obrey on Dec. 13 recognizing him for outstanding service to the state, its citizens, and the department. Obrey has been employed with Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife since 1988, currently serving as the regional fishery biologist for the Moosehead Lake region.
Nations at climate talks back universal emissions rules
Associated Press - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Nearly 200 countries at the U.N. climate talks have agreed upon universal, transparent rules on how nations can cut greenhouse gas emissions and curb global warming, putting the principles of the 2015 Paris climate accord into action. But to the frustration of environmentalists and a group of countries who were urging more ambitious climate goals, negotiators on Saturday delayed decisions on two other climate issues until next year in an effort to get a deal on them.
New trails opening in 2019 in Katahdin Woods and Waters
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

New trails are being constructed in the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument as a part of a $120,000 project to improve visitor access to scenic ponds and other natural highlights on the conserved property. KWW Superintendent Tim Hudson said, “A lot of it is improving trails that we knew were already there.” The Appalachian Mountain Club was contracted for the work, which began in October and has been put on pause for the winter months, to resume in late spring and continue throughout the summer of 2019.
The best crops for first-time growers
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Many homesteaders want to grow their own food, but getting started can be intimidating. While there are no simple answers as to what will be easiest to grow — that depends on your soil health, local climate, and the other resources available — there are a few crops that are slightly more simple to manage for beginning homesteaders. Lettuce, radishes and leafy greens, such as kale, do well with little maintenance and have short growing periods. Shannon Dill, co-chair of the Beginning Farmer Success program at the University of Maryland, says garlic and onions are great for first-time farmers getting started late in the season. Tomatoes may require trellising or a small tunnel to keep out overhead moisture. True to her name, Dill recommends herbs instead.
How to rein in holiday waste
Washington Post - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

According to the EPA, 8.8 million tons of plastic ends up in the ocean every year. Every year, Americans throw out about 200 million pounds of turkey meat over Thanksgiving alone. So, we asked a few zero-waste bloggers for tried-and-true advice on reining in the holiday excess:
• Calculate portions
• Get the most out of leftovers
• Buy useful items and experiences
• Look for secondhand gifts
• Rethink stocking stuffers
• Make your own wrappings
• Make natural decorations
• Go local for drinks
• Use precious serving dishes
Don’t try to be perfect. If everyone just made one change, that would make a big difference.
Maine considers additional protection for wild trout waters
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Maine is considering a new regulation that would make fishing with live fish as bait the exception rather than the general law in most of northern Maine, as it is now. State biologists say the new regulation, if brought forward, would help better protect the wild trout waters in northern Maine, which represent the majority of wild brook trout waters in the Northeast. While trout fishermen think the concept is a good way to better protect Maine’s valuable wild trout populations, they hope the state pursues the new regulation in a way that draws buy-in from fishermen.
Falmouth native dives into climate fight
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Years of training have driven Noah Oppenheim's focus toward the sea. Now he's assisting West Coast crab fishermen in an innovative lawsuit.
Portland man mining climate change for laughs – and action
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

On the list of things that aren’t funny, climate change has to be the top. Not even a plague punchline can compete with a worldwide catastrophe of our own making for least funny. Nonetheless, Jason Wentworth is working on a climate change comedy routine. The Portland resident is not revolutionary in this; late night comedians have, prompted by two major reports warning of dire consequences for humanity, been poking fun at climate change deniers and what Wentworth calls “the great corporate villains.” That’s not what Wentworth wants to do though. He’s aiming for comedy that empowers and inspires the individual to contribute to the solutions.
Cars, trucks, boats, planes add most emissions in Maine
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

Cars, trucks and other vehicles pumped an estimated 8.8 million metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in Maine in 2015. The business sector, which two decades ago was the top source of emissions, emitted half of that amount. The Rockport-based Acadia Center said modernizing Maine’s transportation system could create up to 8,700 new jobs with more than $1 billion in new wages. The Center has recommended Maine work toward goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 45 percent by 2030. Gov.-elect Janet Mills says Maine needs to aggressively expand the number of electric vehicles and access to mass transit in the state.
Column: Hare hunting can be rewarding
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

With muzzleloader and expanded archery seasons over, some Maine sportsmen will downsize to a slightly smaller mammal that they can continue to chase well into winter – the snowshoe hare. Hares belong to the same order as rabbits – Lagomorpha – and both are characterized by having two pairs of upper incisors (front teeth), one smaller set behind the larger front pair. However, rabbits are altricial, being less developed at birth and entirely dependent on their mother for care. Hares are precocial, born fully furred, with eyes wide open and ready to head out and face the world. ~ Bob Humphrey
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