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
Editorial: Aquaculture wrong target for protests
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

We have all become familiar with the stories of Maine industries in decline, from plant closings to groundfish catch limits, but few of us can remember when Maine’s waterfronts were busy job sites with more workers than tourists. Conflict is playing out along the Maine coast as the long-awaited emergence of an aquaculture sector starts to take shape, and unfamiliar uses are starting to show up in places that had grown quiet. All Mainers should demand that our environmental standards are as tough as they need to be and that they are enforced consistently. But we should also be open to new uses of our shared resources that can take the place of the industries we’ve lost.
Opinion: Maine deserves unified, cutting-edge climate action plan
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

The news this past year has been filled with stories about major scientific assessments on climate change on the global and national scales. These reports highlight evidence of our changing climate, the escalating costs and the increasing urgency to respond with dramatic reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions and investments in adaptation. Maine has been a leader in taking steps to address the effects of greenhouse gases on the climate. It needs to be a leader again with a climate action plan building on our past, but squarely aimed at the realities of our future. ~ Ivan Fernandez, Climate Change Institute, UMaine
Letter: CMP corridor project unsafe, unneeded
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

I am strongly opposed to the Central Maine Power New England Clean Energy Connect transmission corridor across the western Maine mountains . An underground project exists in Vermont that already has all its permits and would eliminate any need for the CMP corridor. The CMP project will result in more than 1,800 acres of clearing and 53 miles of new corridor and impact 250 vernal pools and 184 acres of wetlands. I am an avid outdoorsman who worked in the paper industry for 27 years. I am also a director of the Old Canada Road National Scenic Byway. ~ Edwin Buzzell, Pittsfield
Letter: Editorial supporting Hydro-Quebec power line through Maine is bewildering
Boston Globe - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

The Globe finds it “bewildering” that Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Council of Maine (as well as other environmental organizations) oppose the proposal to hack a power transmission corridor through the Maine Woods to allow Massachusetts to tap into Hydro-Quebec hydropower. What is truly bewildering is that the Globe takes the word of Hydro-Quebec, a development agency which has a long history of ecological destruction, environmental injustices against Native peoples, and twisting of the facts to suit its purposes — as well as a huge financial stake in selling power to Massachusetts — over local organizations that are raising real and important objections. Meanwhile, Massachusetts state agencies are busy cutting down state-owned forests. We need these forests to absorb and store carbon to help offset fossil fuel pollution. The Globe has been silent on this important issue. ~ Michael Kellett, Westford, MA
Letter: Opposition rising to CMP project
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, December 16, 2018 

As residents in Somerset County learn about Central Maine Power’s proposed transmission line there is an increasing level of concern and opposition. Residents petitioned local leaders to hold town votes on the issue resulting in overwhelming opposition to the New England Clean Energy Connect in West Forks, The Forks, Moose River, Dennistown and Jackman. The Caratunk Select Board rescinded support. Approval of NECEC would be the start of large-scale infrastructure development in western Maine. Residents should share their concerns with the commissioners before they revote on NECEC at their Dec. 19 meeting. ~ Sandra Howard, Caratunk
Zinke's Gone, But the Interior Won't Change
Outside - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Like many reporters who’ve followed Ryan Zinke’s tumultuous tenure at Interior, I’m surprised he was able to hang in there for so long. Zinke seemed impervious to the kind of flak that brought down his colleague Scott Pruitt, the departed Environmental Protections Agency secretary who shilled for oil and gas companies in his previous role as Oklahoma attorney general. Yet Zinke's departure does not imply a pro-environment reorientation at Interior. And he’s handed out a lot of favors. He probably has a trailer full of golden parachutes emblazoned with energy company logos to choose from. He’s gone for now, but I doubt we’ve seen the last of him.
Interactive charts: recent data show uptick in Maine’s greenhouse gas emissions
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

After an eight-year streak of declining greenhouse gas pollution, the most recent data from the Environmental Protection Agency indicates that Maine’s climate-heating emissions rose slightly between 2012 and 2013, thanks to a large uptick in fossil fuel use for motor vehicles. The EPA hasn’t released updated pollution estimates for the years since 2013, but fuel tax data from the Maine Revenue Services indicate that Mainers’ gasoline consumption – the primary factor behind transportation-related emissions – increased by another 2 percent between 2013 and 2015.
Column: Exhibit tells story of Maine's Olympic history
Sun Journal - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Did you know that Maine has had a skier in every Olympics since 1948? It’s true, and that streak would go back farther had the 1940 and 1944 winter games not been canceled by World War II. Rumford’s Chummy Broomhall qualified for both of those Olympics, but instead fought with the 10th Mountain Division and competed in 1948 and 1952. In 1952, he was joined by a fellow Rumford skier, Bob Pidacks. That started a string that has gone unbroken for 70 years. Once this list was laid out before the Ski Museum of Maine Board of Directors, it was only a matter of minutes before the decision was made to devote a special exhibit to Maine’s Olympic skiers. ~ Dave Irons
Column: Technology gets deer results out quicker
Sun Journal - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Since the beginning of scientific deer herd management in Maine, the data needed to make informed decisions was always slow in coming. The public and the biologists who manage deer were lucky to get November deer harvest figures by early spring. That has all changed this time around thanks to the Fish and Wildlife Department’s implementation of an automated deer tagging system, an online hookup between the town tagging stations and the policymakers at DIF&W. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Snowmobilers gear up for season, but Maine has few trails ready
Associated Press - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Snowmobile season kicks off in northern New England this weekend, but trails are open only in areas of Vermont, Maine and New Hampshire that have enough snow left from the two early season snowstorms in November.
Environmental Groups Hailing Zinke Departure
Associated Press - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

The coming departure of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is being welcomed by environmentalists. The executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity is saying that "Zinke will go down as the worst Interior secretary in history. His slash-and-burn approach was absolutely destructive for public lands and wildlife.'' But Kieran Suckling cautions that Zinke's departure does not mean the Trump administration will stop its efforts to roll back environmental regulations and promote energy production. He predicts it will be different people but the "same appetite for greed and profits.'' Trump said a replacement for Zinke will be announced next week.
A Guide to the Ryan Zinke Investigations
New York Times - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Ryan Zinke, who intends to resign as interior secretary at year’s end, faces a number of ethics inquiries related to his leadership at the Interior Department. Government investigators have also closed nine inquiries related to Mr. Zinke, in some cases because of a lack of cooperation. Here is a guide to Zinke's:
• Casino Lobbying
• Hatch Act Violations
• Travel Policies
• Agency Investigations
• Stalled and Closed Investigations
Meet The Man Likely to Replace Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke
Other - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Daily Caller - President Donald Trump will likely name David Bernhardt, the current number-two official at the Department of the Interior, as acting secretary until a full-time replacement can be found. Bernhardt is a convenient choice for the president having already proven he can further the “energy dominance” agenda. “Deputy Secretary Bernhardt has made it his mission to stifle climate science and silence the public so polluters can profit,” Jamie Williams, president of the Wilderness Society, said.
Interior Secretary Zinke resigns, citing ‘vicious’ attacks
Associated Press - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, facing federal investigations into his travel, political activity and potential conflicts of interest, will be leaving the administration at year’s end, Trump said Saturday. In his resignation letter Zinke said “vicious and politically motivated attacks” against him had “created an unfortunate distraction” in fulfilling the agency’s mission.
After 20 Tumultuous Months for National Parks and Public Lands, Department of the Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to Leave
Other - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Statement by Theresa Pierno, President of National Parks Conservation Association: For months, we have had concerns about Ryan Zinke’s decisions that harm national parks, their wildlife and our cultural and natural resources. NPCA has consistently called on Mr. Zinke to uphold conservation policies that protect our public lands, but unfortunately, he failed to do so. Rather, Mr. Zinke took the opposite trajectory, charting a troubling course for our national parks and protected lands – from creating staff upheaval to carving up our national monuments for destructive development and fast-tracking oil and gas leasing processes in and near some of America’s last truly wild places. His refusal to work effectively with the conservation community and his lack of leadership only adds to the difficulties our national parks and public lands now face.
Editorial: Another loser leaves; the looting continues
Maine Environmental News - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is history. Good riddance. On Saturday, President Trump tweeted that Zinke would leave by the end of the year and that he had “accomplished much during his tenure.” True. As one investigation found, “from gutting the Endangered Species Act to opening off-shore drilling” Zinke led "the Trump administration’s crusade to hand America’s public lands to the fossil-fuel industry." Nor is Zinke's jumping ship good news. Trump will name another looter. High on the list is a Koch puppet, defeated Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who is salivating to drill, mill, kill, spill and fill at will. Good-bye, Ryan Zinke. Hope to see you in court, or maybe an even hotter place, soon.
Ryan Zinke resigns as Secretary of the Interior amid investigations
Washington Post - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Interior Department Secretary Ryan Zinke submitted his resignation to the White House on Saturday, facing intense pressure from the White House amid multiple probes tied to his real estate dealings in Montana and conduct while in office. President Donald Trump announced Zinke’s exit via twitter Saturday morning, and offered praise for the embattled Interior chief.
Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Interior, will leave his post at end of year, Trump says
Fox News - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

President Trump announced Saturday that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will be stepping down from his post at the end of the year. Candidates who could replace him could include David Bernhardt, Zinke's deputy, as well as former Nevada Sen. Dean Heller, and former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Zinke, a former Montana congressman and U.S. Navy Seal, had been dogged by ethics complaints.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to leave Trump administration at end of the year
CNN - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

President Donald Trump announced Saturday morning that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will depart from his administration at the end of the year. The departure comes amid multiple ethics investigations into Zinke.
Zinke resigns; Trump tweets
Other - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Secretary of the Interior @RyanZinke will be leaving the Administration at the end of the year after having served for a period of almost two years. Ryan has accomplished much during his tenure and I want to thank him for his service to our Nation....... ~ Donald J. Trump
Trump's Interior Chief to Step Down as Pressure Mounts From Ethics Inquiries
Bloomberg News - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has notified the White House that he intends to step down amid federal investigations into his travel, political activity and potential conflicts of interest, according to three people familiar with the matter. Zinke’s decision, expected to be announced on Wednesday, comes as Democrats, who’ve vowed to grill the him over his conduct, are about to take control of the House of Representatives, raising the prospect of heightened oversight.
USM will offer course to prepare Bucksport for salmon farm, aquabiz
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

The backers of a $250 million indoor salmon farm in Bucksport will hire plumbers, electricians, biologists and salespeople. But before they do, they want to answer a question for potential workers and others in town: What, exactly, is land-based aquaculture? That’s why Whole Oceans is working with the University of Southern Maine to offer an online class for 25 students starting in late January that explores that very subject, according to Jennifer Fortier, a development and outreach associate for Whole Oceans, which is based in Portland.
Opinion: Mushroom for improvement
Sun Journal - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

A plan is in the works to lure a mushroom factory to Auburn, which city officials promise would make the area the mushroom capital of America. That sounds pretty exciting and all, but to gain that distinction, Auburn is going to have to bare knuckle fight Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, which currently holds that title. Kennett Square may not look like much with their puny population of 6,000, but they’re wiry and they won’t hesitate to knee a few groins or gouge a few eyes if it means defending their title. And who could blame them? Running a mushroom empire isn’t all fungus and games, you know. ~ Mark LaFlamme
Opinion: Amid the dark news on climate, a spark of hope
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Amid the flood of dispiriting news about climate change, a flicker of hope arose that deserves more oxygen. The spark comes from U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, a South Florida Democrat who’s witnessed the region’s “nuisance flooding,” even on sunny days. Deutch is committed to addressing the threat we face from sea-level rise. Two years ago, with former Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Miami, he created the Climate Solutions Caucus, which now has 90 House members — 45 Republicans and 45 Democrats. Two weeks ago a small bipartisan group introduced a bill that would impose a fee — not a tax — on carbon emissions, and return the money to citizen. Deutch’s bipartisan bill is a good place to start. ~ Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, FL
Letter: Regarding the facts about water
Sun Journal - Saturday, December 15, 2018 

Poland Spring Water’s advertisement in a recent Rumford paper was meant to project a positive image. Sometimes the way facts are presented can distort the truth. Poland Spring withdraws 0.059 percent from an annual groundwater recharge of 15 percent, which is 6.6 times greater than the 0.0089 percent based on total annual precipitation. If the ad was just for readers within the Rumford watershed, why use data taken from all the watersheds in which Poland Spring operates? Will future climate change alter the water cycle and bring new facts that lead to Maine water becoming a political issue? ~ Richard Bedard, Peru
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