July 19, 2019  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Growing Maine's Next Economy, May 7
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 30, 2015 

Alan Caron, president of Envision Maine, will speak to the transformative ideas, best practice strategies, and policies that he believes will create prosperity for all Maine people. David Vail, Adams-Catlin Professor of Economics Emeritus, will respond. At Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Moulton Union, May 7, 12:30 pm.
Energy efficiency vote
Action Alert - Wednesday, April 29, 2015 

There has been tremendous public outcry over the Maine Public Utilities Commission’s devastating vote to slash energy-efficiency funding. A bipartisan bill, LD 1215, would simply fix the typo (the missing “and”) in the law. The Maine House could vote as soon as April 30. Call or email your legislators today? ~ Natural Resources Council of Maine
Climate Solutions Mapping Project
Announcement - Wednesday, April 29, 2015 

The Climate Solutions Mapping Project is collecting information on community, business, governmental, and educational initiatives in Maine that are working to prevent further climate change (mitigation) and/or help Maine businesses and communities address the current and future changing climate (adaptation). To showcase your initiative: (1) on the map page, click on Sign In, (2) create a login and password, (3) enter your information on the data entry page and click Submit.
Collins Pond Bird Watching, May 6
Event - Posted - Wednesday, April 29, 2015 

Guided warbler exploration with Bill Sheehan. At Collins Pond, Caribou, May 6, 7 am.
Brunswick Landing Birding, May 6
Event - Posted - Wednesday, April 29, 2015 

The easy trails go through varied habitats of mixed woods, fields, streams, and swamps to a pond. Expect to see a variety of migrating and nesting birds, including an active Osprey nest. Meet at the Brunswick Hannaford at 7:00 a.m. to carpool. Sponsored by Merrymeeting Audubon.
AdventureConnect, May 5
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 28, 2015 

The Adventure Travel Trade Association will hold the first ever AdventureConnect in Maine. At Frontier Café, Brunswick, May 5, 6-8 pm. Assumption of risk and release of liability agreement must be signed.
Plastic China, May 4
Event - Posted - Monday, April 27, 2015 

This film is about how plastic waste from all around the world, including the US, ends up in China. Followed by Q&A with the filmmaker. At Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Sills Hall, Smith Auditorium, May 4, 7 pm.
Building Habitats for Wildlife, May 3
Event - Posted - Sunday, April 26, 2015 

Explore the wide range of habitats utilized by forest wildlife. Learn how humans can help to augment the types of shelters available to animals by visiting the owl boxes, bat box, and native bee log. At Sewall Woods Preserve, Bath, May 3, 1 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Estuary Land Trust.
World Naked Gardening Day, May 2
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

Go figure.
Baxter State Park Clean Up, May 2
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

Join the annual Baxter State Park Roadside Litter Patrol from Millinocket to Togue Pond Gate. May 2, 9 am-12 noon.
MEACC Annual Meeting, May 9
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

Maine Association of Conservation Commissions annual meeting. Doug Beck, Supervisor of Recreational Trails, Maine Bureau of Parks & Lands, will talk about funding for municipal recreational trails. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, May 9, 10 am-1:30 pm. RSVP by May 2.
Maypole Dance, May 2
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

Lawn games, picnicking, fiddle music, children’s Spring sing-a-Long with acoustic singer-songwriter Annie Nixon, maypole dance. At Vaughan Homestead, Hallowell, May 2, 10:30 am - 12 noon.
Birding at Skolfield Shores Preserve, May 2
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

John Berry will lead participants through fields and forest and along the shore to look for spring birds on Middle Bay Cove inHarpswell Heritage Land Trust's Skolfield Shores Preserve. May 2, 9:30-11:30 am.
Bird Watching for Beginners, May 2
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 25, 2015 

Augusta Bird Club member Gabriella Howard will lead an educational and fun bird watching tour at Viles Arboretum, Augusta, May 2, 8-9:30 am.
Healthy Kids Bill, April 30
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 23, 2015 

Day of Action and public hearing on the Healthy Kids Bill, LD 948, which would require the Maine DEP to include products intended for pregnant women in its final phthalates rule, as well as in future rules targeting priority chemicals. LD 948 also will strengthen Maine's Kid-Safe Products Act by expanding the public’s access to information about toxic chemicals in products and the availability of safer alternatives. At Maine State House Welcome Center, Augusta, April 30, 10 am.
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News Items
VIDEO: Watch a moose run through Lewiston streets
Sun Journal - Friday, July 19, 2019 

A motorist on her way to work found herself behind a moose heading into the city. Kathryn Foley posted a video about 5 a.m. showing a moose running on Route 202 as the Longley Bridge became Main Street. Then without using “his blinkah,” the moose took a right turn onto Lincoln Street.
Why do birds sing?
Other - Friday, July 19, 2019 

The Conversation - The beauty of birds isn’t just their looks – it’s also their noises. Bird songs are among nature’s most distinctive and musically satisfying sounds. Why do birds spend so much time and energy singing? There are two main purposes, and they are connected. First, male birds sing to mark territories. A singing bird is saying, “This place is mine, and I’m willing to defend it, especially from others of my species.” The second purpose of singing is to attract a mate for nesting.
Column: Many bird species raise more than one brood a year
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 19, 2019 

Nest failure is common in all species. Many will try again after a failure. Some will try again, even after success. If conditions and the food supply allow, a few species will raise up to six broods a year. I’m talking about you, Mr. & Mrs. Mourning Dove. Bluebirds can do four. Robins can do three. Other thrushes can manage two. Maine summers are too short to allow maximum re-brooding, but a lot of species can accomplish two broods per year. ~ Bob Duchesne
Why a Maine farmer is fighting the state to save his bacon
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 19, 2019 

A Winterport farmer is fighting back against what he calls an “absurd” food safety rule that has condemned 100 pounds of his specialty smoked meat to a terrible fate. Officials from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry have told Randy Canarr that they feel badly about it but still must rip open the frozen packages of bacon, ham, smoked shoulders and more, and douse them with bleach. This is not happening because the meat from Canarr’s pastured pigs is unsafe to eat. It’s because there was a paperwork problem at the business that processed the meat, the farmer said. He understands that he cannot legally sell meat that has been wrongly labeled, but the destruction of his bacon and other products makes no sense to him.
Editorial: Safer roadways for all are part of building community
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 19, 2019 

When it comes to roads, there’s more to think about than cars and trucks. Most of the time, roads, particularly major thoroughfares, were built and are maintained with the thought of automobiles foremost in mind. The needs of walkers, bicyclists and wheelchair users are secondary, as are concerns over how auto-centric arteries can wall off neighborhoods. It is street design that will ultimately make roads safer for pedestrians and bicyclists. It will strengthen communities too. If you build walkable streets, people will walk. If you build bike lanes, people will bike. Improvements will bring people out of their houses and into their neighborhoods. It will be healthier for the people who walk and bike, and for the planet.
Letter: New housing should not encroach on greenspace
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 19, 2019 

As a registered horticultural therapist, I realize the fundamental human need of greenspace within city limits. Cities that honor and protect natural areas enjoy lower crime rates and flourishing communities. It is an indisputable fact that citizens who live within easy access to greenspaces are generally healthier, happier people. This is not rocket science. Humans are part of the natural world. When people have limited access to a nature, illness results. Anxiety, depression, insomnia, obesity are epidemic in our society today. There is a solid connection between the incidence of these conditions with in a population and the lack of access to a natural environment. ~ Colleen Griffin, Portland
Letter: Maine Lobster gear a threat to whales
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 19, 2019 

Right whales have been entangled in Maine lobster gear. This is documented. What we don’t know is the number of entanglements in lobster gear that may have occurred that remain undocumented. Some whales may have managed to free themselves of the gear, or died as a result of their entanglement and were not reported or simply never found. While lobster gear is by no means the only threat to the survival of the right whale, it is one of them. If this critically endangered species is to survive into the future, then every effort must be made to reduce all of these threats. ~ Russell Wray, Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats (COAST), Hancock
Letter: Sad to see trees being cleared
Kennebec Journal - Friday, July 19, 2019 

It is sad to see so many of the trees in our city being destroyed. (“With eye on safety, Maine DOT clearing trees near I-95 exits”). Augusta needs beautification – not more ugliness. ~ Jean Matheson, Augusta
Rumford police reassure public about bobcat hanging out near High Bridge
Sun Journal - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Rumford police Thursday night announced that a bobcat has been seen in the area, but stressed that there’s no reason for alarm. “According to our animal control officer, we have a bobcat hanging out on High Bridge on the South Rumford Road,” according to the department’s Facebook page. “A vet tech and wildlife rehab vet say it seems very healthy, just fascinated with the bridge for some reason. Any complaints can go to Maine Warden Service, but people should not panic.”
Public hearing in Farmington brings more angry CMP customers
Sun Journal - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Members of the Maine Public Utilities Commission sat through a second night of public testimony Thursday, listening to the same story from people sharing their frustrating experiences with Central Maine Power. Rep. Frances Head, R-Bethel, said, “A local dairy farmer saw his bills triple. He may have to go out of business." Speakers said that CMP has not earned the right to increase its rates by 10.65 percent to raise $46.5 million. Some had even more startling things to say concerning CMP’s proposal to build a $1 billion transmission line to bring power from Hydro Quebec through Western Maine to Massachusetts. Geraldine Bryant spoke for an elderly relative, Lyle Laplante of Livermore Falls. “Their transmission line expansion hasn’t been approved, but they are already buying real estate to build the corridor. The Laplantes have been badgered to sell their home to the point they feel intimidated. The offers are low and CMP keeps coming back and saying he might as well sell because the corridor is going to happen anyway."
Land-use survey becomes controversial in Auburn’s agricultural zone
Sun Journal - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

A Bates College survey of landowners has put a tense debate over the future of the city’s agricultural zone back in the spotlight after Mayor Jason Levesque (R) said involvement in the survey by members of elected boards violated the city charter. On Monday, Levesque said the results of the survey, which is being conducted by Bates College professor Francis Eanes, “will not be used in any decision-making process by city staff, elected or appointed officials” because the Conservation Commission and Planning Board never voted to authorize city participation. Levesque misquoted the ordinance language. Those involved in the survey say its main purpose is to gather more accurate information from landowners.
Katahdin Woods & Waters: An Update on the National Monument and Its Impact in the Region
Maine Public - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Guests: Kala Rush, Friends of Katahdin Woods and Waters' Education Coordinator; Lucas St. Clair, Executive Director for Elliotsville Plantation, Inc.; Tim Hudson, National Park Service superintendent of the Monument.
Editorial: Temperatures are rising and so is the need to act on climate change
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Trends point to a need for sustained action to reduce emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases, especially from the burning of fossil fuels like oil, gas and coal to power our electrical grid and transportation sector. On the national level, the Trump administration continues to downplay climate change and to silence those calling for federal action. This is a dangerous course that will continue to cost American lives and resources. Maine has broken five daytime record high temperatures for every record low temperature since 2010. Our congressional delegation should continue to speak out and push for legislation to reduce emissions, but without a change in leadership — in both the U.S. Senate and White House — significant U.S. action is unlikely.
Many USDA workers plan to quit as research agencies move to Kansas City
Washington Post - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

The Trump Administration will uproot wo research agencies at the Agriculture Department from the District of Columbia to Kansas City in the fall. But many staffers have decided to give up their jobs rather than move, prompting concerns of hollowed-out offices unable to adequately fund or inform agricultural science. About two-thirds of the USDA employees have declined reassignment at the Economic Research Service, an influential federal statistical agency, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, which manages a $1.7 billion portfolio in scientific funding. One expert warned that the hemorrhage of employees will devastate ERS and NIFA. “This is the brain drain we all feared, possibly a destruction of the agencies.”
Rally over whale rules planned
Mount Desert Islander - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Last week, Stonington lobsterman Julie Eaton, speaking for most members of her industry in a posting on Facebook announced plans for a rally on the Stonington Fish Pier at noon this Sunday to protest a proposed NOAA Fisheries rule that would force Maine lobstermen to remove half their buoy lines from the Gulf of Maine to reduce the risk that endangered right whales might become entangled in the fishing gear.
Famed Maggie the moose dies at wildlife park
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

The Maine Wildlife Park’s beloved 1-year-old moose Maggie has died, the park announced Thursday. She was found dead in her enclosure by park staff on July 16, the park said. The results of a necropsy indicated that she died from a ruptured brain aneurysm. Maggie arrived at the park last June when she was 3 weeks old and weighed about 25 pounds. She was discovered by a family in their backyard in Wallagrass, and a video of her playing with the family’s dog quickly went viral. She became a sensation at the park, drawing record numbers of visitors.
Stop the Removal of Park Rangers
Sierra Club - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

The Department of the Interior is continuing a secretive program to pull park rangers and police from public lands across the nation and send them to the borderlands region to perpetuate the false border crisis. This Fourth of July, Trump raided millions of dollars in park funds to host himself a lavish personal celebration on the National Mall. Now, his Interior Department is continuing to abuse park resources to further their own interests. Last year, 330 million people visited our nation's parks — that's more than the entire US population. At the same time, the funding for staff needed to protect these lands has been cut so drastically that the US Park Police has warned of "dangerous understaffing."
10 medicinal plants for your natural first aid kit
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Medicinal plants are abundant and have been used for centuries to treat wounds and common ailments. Here are 10 plants to get you started, recommended by Steve Byers, a clinical herbalist from Belfast, and Greta de la Montagne, a registered professional herbalist and mentor with the American Herbalist Guild. Always consult a doctor for serious ailments. The information provided in this story is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Always consult a medical doctor with medical questions and before trying new treatments.
• Cattails
• Old Man’s Beard lichen
• Jewelweed
• Common plantain
• Common yarrow
• Calendula
• Arnica
• Lavender
• White willow
• Goldenseal
Trump's USDA buried sweeping climate change response plan
POLITICO - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

The Agriculture Department quashed the release of a sweeping plan on how to respond to climate change that was finalized in the early days of the Trump administration, according to a USDA employee with knowledge of the decision. Staff members across several USDA agencies drafted the multiyear plan that outlines how the department should help agriculture understand, adapt to and minimize the effects of climate change. Top officials, however, decided not to release the plan.
Belfast fish farm project wins preliminary OK for key state permit
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Nordic Aquafarms this week took a significant step forward in its plans to build a $500 million land-based salmon farm in Belfast. The company has received a preliminary OK from the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands on its bid to install buried water intake and discharge pipes on submerged lands in Penobscot Bay. The application process for this permit has not been without bumps, however. Project opponents have argued that the easement Nordic obtained to cross intertidal land to get to the bay is invalid. BPL says the courts, not the agency, is the right body to determine whether Nordic Aquafarms has sufficient right, title and interest.
We Have 35,000 Male Turkeys
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Maine is home to 35,000 male turkeys according to our Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The department has been banding hundreds of turkeys to help them come up with an estimate of the state’s total population of turkeys. DIF&W wildlife biologist Kelsey Sullivan has written an interesting column about this.
Letter: Good people are being driven out at EPA
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

In spite of the importance of the EPA that ensures our clean water, clean air and protects the public’s health, the current Administration is putting its survival at risk by a continued deliberate decrease of its workforce. Behind the scenes, the Administration is making it more difficult for many at the EPA to continue to work. One of the new directives practically eliminates telecommunicating, so important to a workforce where often housing expenses drive many to the outskirts of the cities where the offices are located. Along with reducing the EPA’s own environmental footprint, teleworking has enabled a dedicated, talented workforce to continue working at the EPA even though the salaries prohibit living near their jobs. ~ Norma Dreyfus, Arrowsic
Letter: Fish farm and Belfast Bay
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Here’s a report on one 19th century year’s catch in Belfast Bay from the Maine Mining and Industrial Journal, between the monument and the head of tide on the Passagassawakeag River: “The fish product of Belfast bay, including clams, for 1879 is reported as follows: mackerel, 1,000 barrels; smelts, 10,000 pounds; lobsters, 75,000 pounds; clams, 5,000 bushels; flounders, 8,300 dozens (99,600 fish); total value about $10,000.” This doesn’t include the salmon that were routinely caught in the weirs between Bangor and Rockland in 1880, or the cod, haddock and halibut that kept hook fishermen occupied in small boats out of Belfast in many years. This historical natural wealth of healthy protein could, however, be put in jeopardy by proposed salmon farms in Bucksport and Belfast. ~ William Burgess Leavenworth, Searsmont
Letter: My job at Hampden waste plant
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 18, 2019 

Last week, the BDN reported that the opening of the Hampden waste plant was delayed “again.” Several weeks ago, a letter to the editor encouraged Bangor residents to keep separating their recyclables from the trash even though Bangor is going to a one bin system. As a recycling technician employed at Coastal Resources of Maine, I’d like to set the record straight by saying the plant is open and our process of separating recycling from household trash is working. Coastal Resources has taken the guesswork out of your recycling. My job is separating your recyclables from the trash. It’s a good job — let me do it. ~ Heather Bisho, Bangor
Angus King steps up for hunters and wildlife
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Wednesday, July 17, 2019 

U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine), member of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, today announced his support of the Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow’s Needs Act. The bipartisan legislation would promote hunting traditions and ensure the continued successful funding of wildlife conservation through the purchase of hunting and recreational shooting equipment.
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