September 19, 2018  
Announcements               
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

National Parks Free Entrance, Sep 22
Announcement - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

All National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone on September 22, National Public Lands Day.
Bald Eagles of Merrymeeting Bay, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 15, 2018 

Maine Audubon Staff Naturalist Doug Hitchcox and Dick Anderson lead this 50th excursion. Board the boat in Boothbay Harbor for a trip across Sheepscot Bay to the Sasanoa River, then up the Kennebec River to Merrymeeting Bay, September 22, 8 am - 1 pm, Maine Audubon members $60, nonmembers $85.
School Food Recovery Handbook
Publication - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

The first comprehensive guide for Maine schools that identifies the serious problems with wasting food and offers solutions, explaining step-by-step how to take action, how to work as a successful team, and how to involve others in the school. Published by Natural Resources Council of Maine.
FarmDrop
Announcement - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

Purchase local, farm-fresh food online and pick it up in Portland, Blue Hill or Mount Desert Island.
Ocean Literacy
Publication - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

This 8-part series by the World Ocean Observatory provides an anthology of what the ocean means for our living, for all aspects of the wellness and welfare of our selves and our communities.
Immigration & Maine’s Migrant Agricultural Workers, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

Farm labor activist and union leader Baldemar Velasquez will talk about the current state of immigration in the United States and migrant agricultural workers in Maine and beyond. At Crosby Center, Belfast, September 20, 7-9 pm.
Protect Maine waters, Sep 20
Action Alert - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

Attend a Board of Environmental Protection hearing in Bangor on September 20 at 1 pm to testify in support of protecting Maine’s clean water.
Clean Water Celebration, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 13, 2018 

Join NRCM, Maine Lakes Society, and Lakes Environmental Association to celebrate Maine’s bountiful clean waters, and hear about past successes and future opportunities for safeguarding them. At Maine Lake Science Center, Bridgton, September 20, 6 pm, RSVP.
Clean Water Celebration, Sep 19
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Join NRCM, Maine Lakes Society, and local lake associations to celebrate Maine’s bountiful clean waters, and hear about past successes and future opportunities for safeguarding them. At Maine Lakes Resource Center, Belgrade Lakes, September 19, 6 pm, RSVP.
Women Caring for the Land, Sep 19
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Women who live in Maine and own or manage farmland are invited to a conservation discussion focused on improving soil health. At Meduxnekeag Ramblers Snowmobile Club, Littleton, September 19, 8:30 am-3 pm, free lunch.
Ecology – A New Way to Pose Alternatives, Sep 18
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

John Rensenbrink, co-founder of Cathance River Education Alliance and Professor Emeritus of Government at Bowdoin College, will talk about how to deal with and transcend embedded opposites in our culture, politics, and schooling. At Topsham Public Library, September 18, 6:30 pm.
History of Mast Landing area, 1760-1860, Sep 18
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

David Coffin gives a view of the history of the Mast Landing area from 1760-1860, including masting, ship building, and the mills and brickyards. At Freeport Library, September 18, 6 pm, $5 donation.
Common Ground Fair Tickets on Sale
Announcement - Sunday, September 9, 2018 

Tickets for MOFGA’s 2018 Common Ground Country Fair in Unity on September 21-23 are on sale until September 16 at retail outlets throughout Maine and online through Brown Paper Tickets. Fairgoers enjoy significant savings by purchasing tickets in advance.
Swan Island Outing, Sep 16
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 9, 2018 

Local historian Jay Robbins leads a nautical circumnavigation tour of Swan Island. At Swan Island ferry landing, Richmond, September 16, 3:15-5:30 pm, preregister. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Hike at Mount Percival Preserve, Sep 15
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 8, 2018 

Coastal Mountains Land Trust Hike-the-Guide outing. At Mount Percival Preserve, Northport, September 15, 9-11 am. Approximately one-mile round trip; open to all ages and abilities.
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News Items
The Most Popular Tourist Attraction in Every State: Maine
Other - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Reader's Digest - Maine is brimming with opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors, and one of the best is Acadia National Park. Relish in the hidden beaches sunrises over Cadillac Mountain in the park’s 47,000 unspoiled acres. Acadia is one of the most visited national parks in the country. For an intense hike, check out Precipice Trail, which features narrow ledges, switchbacks, and a 1,000-foot vertical climb to the top.
Canadian crabs with bad attitude threaten coastal ecosystem
Associated Press - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Green crabs from Nova Scotia are the same species as their cousins that already inhabit Maine waters, but are ornerier and angrier, threatening to accelerate harm to the coastal ecosystem, Markus Frederich, a professor at the University of New England, said. Green crabs, even the docile ones, are considered a scourge that can devour soft-shell and juvenile clams. They can destroy eelgrass that provides a hiding place for juvenile sea creatures. But the Canadian crabs take it to a new level. Eventually, the newcomers will move farther southward into Maine.
Why Maine farmers and gardeners are saving seed from this year’s crops
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

More Mainers are interested in saving seeds, according to Daniel MacPhee, the education programs director at the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, who also produces organic seed commercial at Blackbird Rise Farm in Palermo. Seed saving programs at some Maine high schools are becoming known nationally and even internationally. “There’s been a lot of interest, particularly in the organic community of gardeners and farmers,” he said. “We don’t have control of what commercial seed companies will be offering. If you have a variety you know and love, you can grow it yourself....Whenever you save a seed, you are breeding. You are saving a plant that grows the best."
Maine tries again to clean up a 27,000-ton fire hazard in Warren
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

A 70-acre site tucked back in the woods off Route 90 in Warren has been a thorn in the side of town officials, residents and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection for the better part of the past 20 years. On the property, about 27,000 tons of carpet-like material snakes through the abandoned lot like small mountain ranges. After a previous contract with a Massachusetts company — which trucked out much less material than anticipated — came to an end last year, the DEP is once again collecting proposals from bidders to remove however much material they can from the site.
A salmon group is removing a dam from a Maine shorefront property it bought last year
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

By the end of this week, a nonprofit environmental organization hopes to convert a freshwater pond back into a saltwater cove. With the removal of a granite dam from where Smelt Brook flows into Frenchman Bay, Downeast Salmon Federation hopes to restore an historical smelt run that the fish had used to get from the ocean up into freshwater. Taking out the dam also should allow eels and brook trout to migrate upstream. The project is being funded through private donations and the Maine Natural Resource Conservation Program, in which wetland impact fees collected by the state are used to help fund environmental mitigation projects.
Maine lobsterman corrals two seahorses within two weeks
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

A Boothbay lobsterman hauled his traps recently and, on two occasions, discovered seahorses. Seahorses, which feature bony armor covered with camouflaged skin and a curled tail, can grow to 14 inches long. They typically live between South Carolina and Cape Cod, but scientists believe that rapidly warming ocean temperatures — particularly in the Gulf of Maine — may be drawing other species north.
Island estate in Casco Bay sells for $4.1 million
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

A Gilded Age estate built on Clapboard Island off the coast of Falmouth has been sold to a local family for nearly $4.1 million. Clapboard Island West will remain private and will be separate from a 15-acre preserve on the eastern end of Clapboard that is owned and operated by Maine Coast Heritage Trust. The Clapboard Island East preserve is promoted by MCHT on its website as a kayaking destination and picnicking spot. Maine Coast Heritage Trust warns visitors that there are two private homes on the island – the estate that was just sold and a second private home surrounded by the 15-acre preserve on the island’s eastern end.
Two Maine mayors urge Congress to reject effort to undo local pesticide restrictions
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

The mayors of Portland and South Portland are urging Congress to reject a provision in a wide-ranging farm bill that would nullify local anti-pesticide ordinances adopted in recent years. The federal threat to local restrictions on pesticide use comes after Gov. Paul LePage failed in a state-level attempt to pre-empt local authority regarding pesticides. LePage floated a bill in 2017 that also was advanced in state houses across the country by a business-backed American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). a similar proposal by the pesticide industry was rejected by Congress in the 1980s, and that the pesticide industry also tried to strike down local regulations in court but lost a case heard by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1991.
Column: Why we protect Baxter State Park
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Baxter is a paradise, and we’ve climbed all the mountains, favoring those in the northern half of the park. I spent lots of time fishing remote brooks in the park, as well as the rivers, streams, and ponds all around us. As Maine’s attorney general, Janet Mills has been a member of the Baxter State Park Authority. In 2016, she wrote for the park authority a very thoughtful piece about Baxter State Park, capturing the park that I love. "The park is its own quiet celebration. Its meaning lies in its quietude, in its broad spaces, in its deep peace. That is a tough concept for the culture of today..." I hope all candidates for governor share her appreciation of and commitment to Gov. Baxter’s very special gift to Maine. ~ George Smith
Sabattus and Lisbon vote to tear down dilapidated historic tavern
Sun Journal - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

The former Cushman Tavern on the Sabattus-Lisbon town line was was declared a dangerous building and ordered demolished by Sabattus selectmen and Lisbon councilors Tuesday evening. The old tavern was deemed a danger because its roof has started to cave in. The historic building was built in 1825 and features fresco paintings of oversized trees, ships and New England charm by Auburn artist Orison Wood. The building owner has 30 days to demolish the building and if it isn’t it becomes the towns’ responsibility.
Products May Cost You More After Trump Escalated His Trade War With China
Other - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Money - President Trump’s controversial trade war with China is heating up. That means consumers may soon have to pay more for paper and other products that are covered in the latest round of tariffs.
Trump rolls back Obama-era rules to limit methane emissions
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

The Trump administration on Tuesday rolled back an Obama-era rule that forced energy companies to capture methane – a key contributor to climate change that’s released in huge amounts during drilling on U.S. and tribal lands. A replacement rule from the Interior Department rescinds mandates for companies to reduce gas pollution, which Trump administration officials say already is required by some states. The change could result in the loss of $734 million in natural gas that would have been recovered over the next decade under the old rule. Those savings would have offset some of the industry’s compliance costs.
State expands quarantine area to stop spread of emerald ash borer in York County
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

State officials have expanded an emergency order to restrict the movement of ash products and any untreated firewood from towns in Maine that have been infested with the emerald ash borer, which has been found in both Aroostook and York counties. The order was first issued in August after the beetle was found in the Aroostook County towns of Frenchville, Grand Isle and Madawaska. It was extended this week to include the York County towns of Acton, Berwick, Lebanon and Shapleigh.
Mills unveils economic plan that jabs at LePage, Moody
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Democratic candidate Janet Mills attempted to lay claim Tuesday to a key issue in the four-way race for governor — the economy. She presented a range of initiatives designed to encourage small business growth while addressing Maine’s dearth of skilled workers and its aging labor pool. Her proposal includes overhauling and consolidating the state’s sprawling and confusing economic development bureaucracy, providing no-interest loans to businesses that hire more employees, rural workplace grants that convert abandoned downtown buildings into shared workspaces for companies and workers looking for high-speed internet access, and tax incentives designed to repatriate Maine workers who have left the state seeking better jobs and higher wages.
Regulators Call Utilities’ Response To October 2017 Windstorm ‘Reasonable’
Maine Public - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

State regulators say the response by Maine’s major electric utilities to last October’s windstorm was reasonable, after investigating the utilities’ reaction to the storm, which left as many as 467,000 customers without power. Maine Public Utilities Commission chairman Mark Vannoy says that given a weather forecast that underestimated the wallop Maine would take, Central Maine Power and Emera made the right moves — mostly.
Maine gets nearly $1 million to support state parks, outdoor recreation
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Maine will receive $972,249 in federal funds that will be used for state-identified outdoor recreation and conservation projects. The funds will be distributed from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The funds are nontaxpayer dollars derived from Outer Continental Shelf lease revenue and are awarded through federal matching grants administered through the National Park Service. Maine has benefited from more than $180 million in funding from the Land and Water Conservation Fund during the past half-century.
Hike: Deboullie Mountain
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Nestled in the heart of the North Maine Woods, Deboullie Mountain is one of several hiking destinations in Deboullie Public Lands, a state-owned property characterized by its small, rugged mountains, mossy forests and remote ponds and streams that are popular for fishing. Topping off at 1,981 feet above sea level, Deboullie Mountain is slightly taller than the rest of the mountains in the area, and on its summit sits a historic fire lookout tower that provides an unobstructed 360-degree view. And there’s a nice overlook near the top of the mountain, and another partial overlook near the tower.
Officials: The CAT Ferry Carried More Than 18K Passengers Last Month
Maine Public - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

The CAT Ferry carried more than 18,000 passengers between Portland and Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, last month, according to Portland city officials. That brings the season's total number of passengers to 38,382. With more than a month of sailings to go, the high-speed ferry service is on track to exceed last year's total of 41,462 passengers. Bay Ferries, which operates the service, is looking into shifting its U.S. point of departure from Portland to Bar Harbor for next year.
Opinion: Maine aquafarms can feed the global demand for seafood
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

In the 1990s, as industrial salmon farming expanded, net pens developed in bays and fjords. These were “open systems” where waste, feeds, dead fish and farming debris were released, and pens occasionally failed, spilling farmed fish into the ocean causing “biological pollution.” But with research and development, sophisticated feeds and new technologies were invented. Also, antibiotics were added to control diseases. Today, each fish is vaccinated. Now, the science of recirculating aquaculture systems on land is here, making it possible to farm fish without the use of net pens in the ocean. Americans import more than 90% of the seafood we eat, much of which from poorly regulated aquaculture farms. Don’t let those who jump on junk science websites or express a simple dislike of farmed fish distract us from the real opportunities. ~ Barry A. Costa-Pierce, editor-in-chief of Aquaculture, executive director of UNE NORTH, and professor of marine sciences at University of New England
China raises tariffs on $60 billion of US goods in technology fight
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

President Trump imposed 25 percent duties on $50 billion of Chinese products in July. Beijing retaliated with similar penalties on the same amount of American goods [including lobsters and other products from Maine]. Trump threatened Monday to add a further $267 billion in Chinese imports to the target list if China retaliates for the latest U.S. duties. That would raise the total affected by U.S. penalties to $517 billion – covering nearly everything China sells the United States. By expanding the list to $200 billion of Chinese products, Trump will spread the pain to ordinary households.
5 ways Trump’s tariffs on China will affect you
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

By imposing taxes on an additional $200 billion in Chinese goods, President Donald Trump has intensified a battle of wills between the world’s two largest economies — and the outcome is far from certain. But what’s clear is that the latest fight in the escalating trade war is likely to affect consumers, companies, markets, the economy and the political landscape.
What you can do when bugs and rodents move in for the winter
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Seasonal migration of wildlife has little impact on humans, unless that migration path leads directly into the home. And when the warm days of summer turn into the cool days of fall and chillier days of winter, that can happen as critters try to find a warm place to stay. So what is a Maine homeowner to do? It really comes down to what is getting in from the outside and an individual’s level of tolerance for sharing space.
Maine dealers say China is further inflating prices on U.S. lobster as part of tariff war
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Maine lobster dealers say China is improperly inflating the market price of lobster to increase its punitive tariffs on U.S. live lobster imports. The 25% tariff China is imposing on U.S. lobsters already gives Canadian lobster dealers a competitive advantage that Maine dealers have found almost impossible to overcome. They fear the additional cost of a tariff based on the higher-priced Canadian lobster will scare away the few Chinese customers still willing to consider buying U.S. lobsters. Maine supplies more than 84 percent of all U.S. lobsters.
Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund grants go to lots of great projects
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

The Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund has provided more than $20 million for conservation and outdoor recreation projects. Here are a few projects that received funding in the last round.
• Maine Brook Trout Coastal Stream and Pond Survey
• Reconstruction of Rainbow Dam to Protect Artic Charr and Brook Trout
• Allagash Wilderness Waterway Snowmobiles
• Improvements at Pierce Pond to Facilitate Learning about Fish Passage
• Shooting Range and Facilities Access Improvement Program
• Trail Enhancements for Year Round Recreation and Stewardship Promotion
Acadia National Park on pace to break 2017 record for visitors
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Visits to Maine’s only national park so far this year are on pace to exceed the total from 2017, when Acadia had an estimated record of 3.5 million visits, according to park officials. A notable exception to the increase in fall visits to Acadia occurred in 2013, when a 16-day federal government shutdown in October resulted in a steep drop off in park visitation. President Donald Trump has raised the specter of forcing another federal government shutdown this fall, after the federal fiscal year comes to a close Sept. 30, over funding for his proposed wall along the Mexican border.
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