September 19, 2018  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links 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
Solar 101, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Join ReVision Energy to learn about the benefits of solar technology. At Scarborough Public Library, September 26, 2018 6:30 pm.
Activist Training for Maine's Environment, Sep 27-Oct 11
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Maine's environmental community is hosting a series of trainings. Learn skills to be a powerful activist and meet fellow environmentalists who want to make a difference in Maine. September 27, Biddeford; October 4: Auburn; October 11, Jefferson; October 18, Falmouth.
Naturalist's Notebook, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Bowdoin biology professor Nat Wheelwright will speak about the book he wrote with Bernd Heinrich, "The Naturalist's Notebook: An Observation Guide and 5-Year Calendar-Journal for Tracking Changes in the Natural World Around You." At Portland Public Library, September 26, 5:30-7:30 pm.
Weasels of Maine, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Shevenell Webb, Wildlife Biologist with IF&W, talks about weasel ecology and natural history. At Augusta Nature Club luncheon, at Capital Area Technical Center, Augusta, September 26, 11:30 am, $7 for lunch.
NRCM online auction, thru Sep
Announcement - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Online auction benefits Natural Resources Council of Maine, through September.
Evening for the Environment, Oct 3
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

A night of camaraderie, celebration, and inspiration for those who care about protecting Maine's environment. Keynote speaker Gina McCarthy, former EPA Administrator. At Brick South on Thompson's Point, Portland, October 3, 5:30-8:00 pm. Organized by Maine Conservation Voters.
Help wanted: Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

The Natural Resources Council of Maine is seeking applications for the position of Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications. The position provides leadership in advancing NRCM and the organization’s advocacy work through the news media. Deadline: October 11, 2018.
MCV Action Fund 2018 Endorsements
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

A list of candidates endorsed by the Maine Conservation Voters Action Fund.
Bringing an ocean perspective to an urban estuary, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Karina Nielsen, director of San Francisco State University’s Estuary and Ocean Science Center, will speak at the UMaine Darling Marine Center, Walpole, September 24, 12:15 pm.
Maine's Beaches are Public Property, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Author and law professor Orlando E. Delogu speaks about public access to Maine’s beaches. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, September 24, 6:30 pm.
Why Natural History Matters, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Tom Fleischner, Executive Director of the Natural History Institute, will describe how the practice of natural history provides the foundation for the natural sciences, conservation, healthy society, and our own well-being. At Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, September 24, 7 pm, Maine Audubon members $12, nonmembers $15.
Save our Shores Walk, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 16, 2018 

Learn how climate change may affect our shores and how CLF is working to ensure a resiliant Maine coast. At Ferry Beach, Saco, September 23, 2:30-5 pm. Sponsored by Conservation Law Foundation.
Help restore cottontail habitat, Sep 22, 28, 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

The Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge will host a volunteer work day to help restore native scrubland habitat, home to many species including the New England cottontail rabbit. Volunteers needed. At Libby Field, Scarborough, Sep 22, 28, 29, 9 am - 2 pm.
Art is for the birds, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

This arts workshop invites community members to collaborate on a sculpture that will provide winter shelter for birds. At Kingdom Woods Conservation Area, Blue Hill, September 22, 10 am-noon.
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News Items
Now there’s a place where you can drink beer and watch goats play
Bangor Daily News - Friday, September 7, 2018 

There’s nothing quite like sipping a cold craft beer, enjoying a soft homemade pretzel and watching goats play. Yes, goats. To make this magical combination possible, Turning Page Farm — a homestead, goat creamery and small-batch brewery in Monson — recently opened a beer garden right outside one of their goat pastures.
Small Maine town rescinds support for big CMP hydro project
Bangor Daily News - Friday, September 7, 2018 

A town of 68 residents along the proposed hydropower corridor from Canada to Lewiston retracted its earlier letter of support for the Central Maine Power and Hydro-Quebec project, calling it harmful and saying it is not financially beneficial to the Maine economy or its residents. Caratunk is one of the towns along the NECEC route that earlier signed letters supporting the project. Residents had second thoughts after comparing the benefits touted by CMP, including property tax benefits, with what Caratunk might lose, including not being able to build a solar array.
Algae bloom turns Hancock County pond into a mucky green mess
Bangor Daily News - Friday, September 7, 2018 

Earlier this summer, Georges Pond looked more like a vast, 350-acre bowl of pea soup than a freshwater lake. But it wasn’t anything you would want to eat. The pronounced discoloration was a severe algae bloom in the lake, which is ringed by property owned by people who come each summer to enjoy the view and swim in the lake’s cool waters. Such blooms in Georges Pond — and in dozens of other lakes throughout Maine — have alarmed abutting property owners who have reduced use of the pond. And the blooms appear to be getting worse, but property owners aren’t sure why.
Opinion: Speeding costs lives, medical bills, property and environmental damage
Portland Press Herald - Friday, September 7, 2018 

On Maine roads, according to the state Department of Transportation, 150 motorists, 20 pedestrians and two bicyclists were killed last year. Speeding is cited as a leading cause of these deaths. Biking and walking are healthy and environmentally friendly modes of transportation and recreation. It’s essential that we reduce speeding so more Mainers are able to use the state’s roads in a way that benefits individuals and society as a whole. This is an appeal to everyone: Drive more slowly. Roads are for people, not just cars. ~ Angela King, Bicycle Coalition of Maine
NFWF announces $1.5 million in grants to reduce derelict fishing gear along U.S. coastlines
Other - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation today announced seven grants totaling $1.5 million to reduce derelict fishing gear – lost, abandoned or discarded in the marine environment – in targeted areas in U.S. coastal waters. The grants will support the removal and disposal of an estimated 170,000 pounds of derelict gear from the coastal waters of Maine and five other areas.
Canton dedicates Susan R. Gammon walking trails
Sun Journal - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

In 2008, Canton constructed the Heritage Garden and hiking trails in flooded land acquired by the town as part of its Comprehensive Plan. Susan R. Gammon’s volunteer efforts on behalf of the town made the garden and hiking trail a reality.
KVCOG looking for new executive director
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

The Kennebec Valley Council of Governments, an organization made up of local municipalities that focuses on economic development and planning, is looking for a new executive director following the departure of Rosie Vanadestine. Vanadestine, who served as executive director for about five years, left in June after her contract expired. KVCOG, based in Fairfield, is a nonprofit made up of 65 member communities in Kennebec, Somerset and western Waldo counties. The organization focuses on local and regional economic development and planning.
Opposition builds to CMP’s transmission line project
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

Opponents of a 145-mile transmission line project through western Maine are planning to rally Friday outside a Department of Environmental Protection building in Augusta as the review process intensifies for the New England Clean Energy Connect. Opponents to the project have cited a variety of reasons — environmental concerns, wildlife, wetlands, natural resources, the scenic character of the area and tourism among them.
Couple uninjured after plane crash in Bigelow Mountain Range
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

A couple from Vermont escaped injury Thursday when their small plane crashed into the side of the Bigelow Mountain Range in bad weather. Frank Gibney, of Colchester, VT, the owner and pilot of the plane told troopers he was flying alongside another plane on the way to the Greenville International Seaplane Fly-In when he lost visibility because of the weather and crashed into trees. Gibney and his passenger, Diane Muhr, also of Colchester, were uninjured. The pair hiked up the mountain about half a mile to the Appalachian Trail.
Turnpike authority approves $140 million plan to widen 5 miles of highway and replace 3 bridges
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

The Maine Turnpike Authority will move quickly to widen part of the four-lane highway in the Portland area. The authority’s board of directors on Thursday approved a scaled-back plan to add a travel lane in each direction to about 5 miles of the turnpike, which is Interstate 95, from Scarborough to about a mile beyond the Larrabee Road exit in Portland. The original plan called for widening about 9 miles of the highway. Sean Mahoney, director of the Conservation Law Foundation’s Maine Advocacy Center, told the board his group felt “the need for widening the turnpike has been made evident.” The board should evaluate if more lanes will be needed after more capacity is added to the Portland area, he said.
Nearly 30,000 CMP customers lose power as intense thunderstorm brings down trees
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

Nearly 14,000 Central Maine Power Co. customers were still without power late Thursday night after a powerful thunderstorm rolled through southern Maine, knocking out electricity to as many as 29,700 homes and businesses at the storm’s peak. The storm was so intense and caused such extensive damage that the National Weather Service office in Gray said it will consider whether to send a team to Brunswick on Friday to determine whether a tornado touched down. The high winds produced by the thunderstorm affected 30 roads in Brunswick, which became littered with fallen trees, utility poles and downed wires.
Maine officials trying to track down 3 ash trees that may be carrying a destructive pest
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry wants the public’s help locating three ash trees sold by a major retailer that received shipments from a New Jersey nursery that’s within a quarantine area for the emerald ash borer. While department’s staff removed and destroyed other trees sent to Maine from the nursery, the three in question were sold this summer before the discovery of the potentially infected shipments. Federal authorities are expected to impose a quarantine on ash trees or products in Maine in response to the insect’s recent discovery. Ash is used to make baseball bats, snowshoes, furniture, canoe paddles and other products in Maine. Generations of Maine’s Indian tribes have used ash to weave baskets, and in birch-bark canoes and in other tribal crafts.
Opinion: Why Would This Guy Support the Zone Change to Include Aquaculture & Allow Application for a Fish Farm to Be Considered?
Free Press - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

If built out as proposed, Nordic Aquafarms will pay more taxes than the top 100 taxpayers in Belfast combined. The NA site will also be a state-of-the-art facility. It will attract and employ a significant number of people and, even if the business is sold to new owners, it will never be moved to an out-of-state call center. Once built, the fish will be here a long time. It will add to the diversity of options for local people to find work they want to do. This is why I support the fish farm application and want to know more through the application process. ~ Mike Hurley, Belfast
York is building a road to give tourists direct access to the beach. Now what will the town do with the land around it?
York Weekly - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

When York selectmen meet next week, they will discuss next steps in developing the property surrounding Short Sands Road, as the new connector road from Route 1 to the beach nears its final stages. It will likely not be until next spring, however, before the road — which aims to provide tourists with a direct route to the popular beach destination without clogging up other town roads — is completed and opened. Meanwhile, the focus will soon shift to what to do with the 40-acre, town-owned property surrounding the road. The land is in the town’s green enterprise overlay district, which says: Enhance recreation and natural resources by day, and culture and entertainment by night.
Changes ahead for Maine apple growers as love for Red Delicious wanes
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

Maine apple experts believe the fact that the Red Delicious has just dropped from its 50-year perch as the nation’s most popular and most polarizing apple shows that changing consumer tastes are leading to a shake-up in orchards in Maine and beyond. The Gala apple is now officially the country’s top apple. In Maine and New England, though, the Red Delicious was never the most popular apple. That honor went to the McIntosh.
Part owner of lobster company netted $1.5 million from scheme, lawsuit says
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, September 6, 2018 

A lobster wholesaler is suing one of its part owners, alleging he embezzled nearly $1.5 million from the business. Sea Salt, which operates as a wholesaler and a restaurant on Route 1 in Saco, alleges that the part owner, Matthew Bellerose of Scarborough, set up a sham customer with another man and then sent the phony client thousands of dollars worth of lobsters without billing the customer. The lobsters were then resold, the lawsuit says.
Maine Lottery sets record for prizes awarded
Mainebiz - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

The Maine Lottery recorded its best 12 months ever in the fiscal year 2018 that just ended, setting records for sales, prize money, commissions to retailers and funds transferred to the state. More than $722,000 in revenue was provided to the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund to support wildlife and conservation programs in Maine.
Brunswick farm's can-do approach earns 'game-changer' grant
Forecaster - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

Local cannery Turtle Rock Farm, operating in a former car wash at Brunswick Landing, looks unassuming from the outside. But the 5-year-old business just received a big boost. The cannery will get $250,000 from the USDA’s Value Added Producer Grant to “assist agricultural producers seeking to establish or expand markets for their value-added agricultural products.” Soon, the Brunswick Landing space will also be home to a new winter farmers market. A heated greenhouse is being built behind Turtle Rock Farm that will have space for 16 vendors from the Mid Coast Winter’s Farmers Market.
Gulf of Maine Water Temperatures Soar Near Record Highs After Ocean 'Heat Wave'
Other - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

Weather Channel - As if this summer's heat on land isn't enough, sea-surface temperatures in the Gulf of Maine soared to near-record highs in August in what scientists referred to as a month-long "marine heat wave" in the typically colder waters off the New England coast. Scientists at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) in Portland, Maine, released an analysis, determining that the Gulf of Maine officially experienced its second-warmest day on Aug. 8 in satellite-data records dating back to 1981. The Gulf of Maine waters are warming faster than most of the Earth's oceans, according to the GMRI analysis.
Norridgewock seeks to resolve hazards posed by birds at airport
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

The town of Norridgewock is planning to roll out within the next 30 days a new program for reporting pilots’ encounters with birds, while at the same time monitoring whether a proposed expansion at the neighboring Crossroads Landfill could contribute to increased bird problems.
Freeport sends message on airboats
Forecaster - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

Freeport Town Manager Peter Joseph Tuesday told the Town Council there have recently been 15 to 30 complaints about noise created by airboats. A 2005 opinion from the Maine attorney general’s office to Brunswick states that municipalities in Maine are preempted by state law from regulating the operating of watercraft, including airboats. The town can enforce state law regarding boat noise levels, which prohibits motorboats from exceeding a noise level of 90 decibels when stationary and 75 when operating, but is prohibited from adding or enforcing a local ordinance or regulation. However, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife does not have a set of measurement standards, considers the decibel limit “unenforceable” and is seeking to address that.
Sappi North America formally dropping the S.D. Warren Co. name
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

After 164 years, a major name in Maine and paper history is being erased. Sappi North America is formally dropping the S.D. Warren Co. name where it is still in use at the Westbrook mill it bought in 1994 and other sites that were part of the acquisition. A spokeswoman for the company, which is headquartered internationally in South Africa, said the change was being made for “administrative reasons.” S.D. Warren dates to 1854, when the company was established on the banks of the Presumpscot River in Westbrook.
Acadia climber in fair condition after surgery to repair badly damaged leg
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

Surgeons were working Wednesday to repair the shattered left leg of a professional adventure sportswoman hit by a falling rock in Acadia National Park. Serenity Coyne of Boston was undergoing her second operation at Eastern Maine Medical Center of Bangor since the Labor Day accident on Dorr Mountain Ladder Trail. The 53-year-old was descending and between trail ladders when the 400- to 500-pound rock smashed her leg.
Camden considers steep fines for failing to have sewer lines inspected
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

For the past three years, the Camden Wastewater Department has been conducting sewer-line inspections in basements to locate illegal hookups to the town’s sewer lines that can cause an overflow of the wastewater system during major rain events. But about 200 property owners have not responded to inspection request letters, according to wastewater department superintendent David Bolstridge, meaning town officials must decide when and how to impose a $100 per day fine for the violation, as mandated in the town’s sewer ordinance.
Major construction planned for I-95 in southern Maine likely to cause headaches for years
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 5, 2018 

Resurfacing the Piscataqua River Bridge and building a new toll plaza in York are planned for the next three years even as a record number of drivers are expected to be using the highway.
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