September 20, 2017  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

A Cosmic Perspective, Sep 27
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 20, 2017 

American astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson will speak at Portland’s Merrill Auditorium, September 27.
Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news and events. We have posted summaries and links to 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
State of Working Maine 2017
Publication - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

The "State of Working Maine 2017," published by the Maine Center for Economic Policy, presents a comprehensive analysis of the economic, demographic, and workforce trends that impact the quality and quantity of jobs in Maine.
Alan Hutchinson memorial celebration, Sep 28
Event - Posted - Monday, September 18, 2017 

A celebration to pay tribute to the memory of the late Alan Hutchinson, executive director of the Forest Society of Maine. At Portland Country Club, Falmouth, September 28, 4:30-6:30 pm. RSVP.
BDN Poll: Should Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument be open to logging?
Action Alert - Monday, September 18, 2017 

Do you think the Katahdin Woods and Waters national monument should be opened for commercial forestry use?
Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Monday, September 18, 2017 

Lucas St. Clair will discuss the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument. At Portland House of Music, September 26, 4:30 - 6:30 pm, Portland Regional Chamber Members $15, Non-Members $20, Walk-Ins $30.
National Lobster Day, Sep 25
Announcement - Monday, September 18, 2017 

The U.S. Senate has designated September 25 as National Lobster Day.
Making America Green Again: A Workshop in Resistance, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 17, 2017 

This public policy teach-In will address threats Maine's environment faces from rollbacks in Washington, D.C., and how can Mainers fight back. At Common Ground Country Fair, Unity, September 23, 1-2:30 pm. Sponsored by Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association.
Making America Green Again: A Workshop in Resistance, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 16, 2017 

This public policy teach-In will address threats Maine's environment faces from rollbacks in Washington, D.C., and how can Mainers fight back. At Common Ground Country Fair, Unity, September 23, 1-2:30 pm. Sponsored by Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association.
Common Ground Country Fair, Sep 22-24
Event - Posted - Friday, September 15, 2017 

The Common Ground Country Fair "celebrates organic living, farming and growing" and hosts a large number of political groups and activists. At in Unity, September 22-24, sponsored by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA).
Becoming an Outdoors-Woman Introductory Weekend, Sep 22-12
Event - Posted - Friday, September 15, 2017 

Introductory learning experiences in a variety of outdoor skills including hunting, fishing, wilderness survival, and outdoors skills for women 18 years and older. At University of Maine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Bryant Pond, September 22-24.
Intimate Details of Life on a Remote Farm in Maine, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 

At the annual meeting of the Kennebec Historical Society John Twomey will talk about retiring to a farm in Montville. At Maine State Library, Augusta, September 20, 6:30 pm.
2017 Maine Outdoor Film Festival
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 12, 2017 

Here is a schedule for upcoming screenings of the 2017 Maine Outdoor Film Festival.
Killing Maine
Publication - Monday, September 11, 2017 

The Kindle edition of "Killing Maine" by Mike Bond is free on Amazon, September 11-15. It is the story of Hawaiian surfer Pono Hawkins who books a flight to Maine to help a fellow Special Forces vet duck a murder conviction. The story has an unusual villain, WindPower LLC, whose deafening, monstrous turbines are an incessant presence throughout the story.
Swan Island Circumnavigation, Sep 17
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 10, 2017 

Leader: Jay Robbins. At Richmond, September 17, 3:30-5:30 pm.
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News Items
Maine recovers nearly all mussels affected by toxic algae
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Seafood dealers have recovered 98 percent of the mussels that were recalled after being harvested in an area of Down East Maine currently experiencing an algae bloom that produces a potentially deadly biotoxin. Officials estimate 58,480 pounds of mussels were affected by the recall initiated Friday.
LePage says ‘corporate greed’ driving up lumber prices in hurricanes’ wake
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Gov. Paul LePage is calling for a suspension of tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber to ease prices as families and businesses prepare to rebuild in the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey and Irma – and with two more months of hurricane season to go. The Republican governor blames “corporate greed” for driving up costs, and says large lumber companies are in the position to “potentially price-gouge distressed Americans.” “We’ve tried to stay neutral. We have members on all sides. In general, what we’re in favor of is negotiating some sort of settlement quickly that’s equitable to all sides,” said Patrick Strauch, Maine Forest Products Council executive director.
Maine DEP practices oil spill response in Richmond
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

There was no oil spill Tuesday afternoon on the Kennebec River, but for several hours, members of the state’s hazardous materials cleanup teams pretended otherwise. Off the eastern shore of Swan Island, they used boats and anchors to stretch yellow barriers across the river, trying to protect sensitive shellfish habitats from the imaginary oil slick floating on the surface.
Study: New England Loses 65 Acres Of Forest Per Day To Development
Maine Public - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

A new wave of forest loss is underway in New England, at a rate of 65 acres a day. That's the conclusion of a new regionwide study spearheaded by a Harvard University forest research group. And the authors say New England could lose more than a million acres of forest cover over the next half-century.
Maine expanding shellfish closure in wake of harmful bloom
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Maine regulators are expanding a shellfish harvesting ban along the state’s central and eastern coast that follows a harmful algae bloom. The bloom resulted in a recall of mussels last week. The state Department of Marine Resources has closed a section of the Penobscot River north of Stockton Springs and a section of Cobscook Bay south of Eastport to harvesting of shellfish. The state has also expanded a precautionary harvesting ban as far east as Calais, which is on the Canadian border. Harvesting had been suspended in Frenchman Bay east of Mount Desert Island after mussels tested at elevated levels of domoic acid, a neurotoxin produced by an algae bloom. It can cause sickness, memory loss and brain damage in humans.
Photos: Common Ground Fair from old to new
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Every fall, upwards of 60,000 people descend on Unity for the Common Ground Country Fair in the spirit of celebrating agriculture in Maine. The fair reawakens the back-to-the-land movement with organic food enthusiasts, craftsman, wool spinners, sheep herding demonstrations and more. The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association held its first Common Ground Country Fair at the Litchfield Fairgrounds in 1977. In 1996, the fair was moved to Unity, where it has been held since. This year’s Fair runs Sept. 22 through Sept. 24. Take a look through the Bangor Daily News archives as we remember fairs of the past, reminding us about the movement that changed Maine.
French president defends international cooperation at U.N.
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

French President Emmanuel Macron issued a ringing defense of global cooperation Tuesday, telling world leaders that solving major challenges otherwise will be reduced to “the survival of the fittest.” In his first appearance at the U.N. General Assembly, Macron vowed to press ahead with the Paris accord to combat global warming, although the United States has said it is withdrawing.
Hike: Trout Brook Mountain in Baxter State Park
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Rising 1,767 feet above sea level on the north end of Baxter State Park, Trout Brook Mountain features a 3.3-mile loop hike that leads to great views of the nearby Traveler Mountains and Grand Lake Matagamon, as well some lesser mountains and bodies of water.
FocusMaine hires president, implements 10-year plan
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

FocusMaine has hired its first president, Kimberly Hamilton, to help implement the Portland-based economic development group’s 10-year plan to help create jobs and increase worker capacity in Maine, the group said Tuesday. Hamilton is chief impact officer at Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization. Previously, she served in a variety of senior roles at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other policy and research organizations. She will start at FocusMaine in late October. FocusMaine said it has begun the initial phase of its plan to create sustainable job growth in three of Maine’s key economic sectors: agriculture, aquaculture and biopharmaceuticals.
Report: Rural Maine is still in a deep depression
Maine Environmental News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

According to a new report released Tuesday by the Maine Center for Economic Policy, the performance of the state's Gross Domestic Product in recent years demonstrates the extent to which Maine's economy has stalled out. Maine's GDP had yet to recover to pre-recession levels. The state has effectively suffered through three further recessions since the Great Recession of 2007-09. The result is an economy that underwent fitful periods of growth, followed by backsliding. Maine’s economy is still smaller than before the Great Recession. In the Greater Portland area, economic growth has been slow but consistent since 2009. Elsewhere, however, the economy has been in freefall.
Opinion: One last summer hike to clear the mind
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Whenever you feel as though the world is on fire, take a walk into the woods and delight in the nuances of nature. Let your brain relax as you navigate the twisting trails and climb the steep terrain. Take in the sounds of the leaves rustling in the wind, squirrels scurrying from tree to tree, a single acorn knocking against branches as it sails to the ground. Stop to admire how the setting sun looks as it cuts through the trees and illuminates circles of the forest floor. Relish the feeling of the wind cooling the sweat beading at the back of your neck. ~ Emily Higginbotham, copy editor, Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel
NRCM warns: Lawsuit likely if commercial logging permitted in national monument
Mainebiz - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Lisa Pohlmann, executive director of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, served notice to the Trump administration that allowing "commercial logging" in the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument would "almost certainly trigger a lawsuit." The warning is in response to a leaked report from Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to President Donald Trump advising that the executive order that created Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument be amended to promote "active timber management." Active timber management typically refers to cutting trees for commercial wood sales for uses such as the manufacture of wood pellets, paper goods and housing materials.
Trump threatens ‘total destruction’ of North Korea during U.N. address
Associated Press - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

President Trump, in a combative debut speech to the U.N. General Assembly, threatened the “total destruction”‘ of North Korea if it does not abandon its drive toward nuclear weapons. [Editor: Nuclear war could ruin your day, even in Maine.]
I’ll bet you don’t know what gleaning is
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

You may not know what gleaning is, but you’ll want to participate in Maine gleaning day, just one of the many interesting and exciting projects in the new fall edition of the Sustainable Maine quarterly newsletter, a project of the Natural Resources Council of Maine. You will most certainly want to participate in Maine Gleaning Day, scheduled for October 14.
Opinion: It’s time to wake up to the climate change threat and take steps to mitigate its effects
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

There are clear steps that Mainers can take to address the crisis of climate change and mitigate our impact on the environment, all while creating new “green” jobs that will drive our future economy. First, we can increase our investment in energy efficiency. Second, we need to grow our own energy. Third, Maine must play a leadership role in the mitigation of climate change through carbon capture and sequestration. Fourth, Maine can grow more food. ~ Jonathan Fulford, candidate, 2nd Congressional District
Birders flock from far and wide to catch a glimpse of this rare visitor
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

A fork-tailed flycatcher, a bird usually found in South America and last seen in the state 5 years ago, has spent several days at Maine Audubon in Falmouth. The flycatcher – a black-and-white bird with an extremely long and brilliantly forked tail – should have been emigrating south from Central America to summer in its home range instead of flying north to Maine, said Maine Audubon Naturalist Doug Hitchcox, who spent the day showing the bird to visitors. But sometimes birds get turned around and go in the opposite direction.
Editorial: Leaked report feeds sense of uncertainty on Katahdin Woods and Waters
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Uncertainty is the biggest danger of the destructive and unnecessary process that has been unleashed on the Katahdin region by the Trump administration and its allies here in Maine. Tentative steps toward expanding the outdoor recreation economy in an area that has been devastated by the loss of papermaking, its core industry, will be set back again by politicians who want to thump their chests. Vague promises about logging the 87,000 acres – less than 1 percent of the 17.8 million-acre forest that surrounds it – won’t save many jobs in the increasingly mechanized forest products industry. But even before a single tree is felled, the word is out to potential visitors and people who want to host them that there could be nothing to see after a very long drive.
Letter: Improve Portland waterfront for current users, not developers
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

I was so glad to read that commercial fishermen are protesting the development planned for the Portland waterfront. Not only are fishermen and marine-related businesses affected, but all of the islanders in Casco Bay are as well. I fail to understand why our city officials insist upon building up this area. The congestion on Commercial Street is horrendous now. Imagine what it will be like when more hotels, condominiums and the new Wex headquarters, with its 450-plus employees, come into the mix. I say, “Leave the waterfront for small business and the people who live and use this area.” ~ Betty Thompson, South Portland and Cliff Island
Letter: A climate change solution
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

I’m not a scientist. I do have children and grandchildren. Maybe you do, too. I have read a lot about climate change. I believe what 97 percent of climate scientists say — that it is real and it is human caused. It all seems too big of a problem. I want it to just go away. To not be true. Recently, however, I have found a group that gives me hope. The Citizens Climate Lobby is a nonpartisan group working to educate the public and our local and national leaders, of all political persuasions, about the realities of climate change and about one action, carbon fee and dividend, that can make a true difference in the outcome. ~ Mary Poulin, Hampden
Letter: Anti-Trump signs blight nature’s peace
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 19, 2017 

Few public sanctuaries from the contentious political discourse of the day remain. The City Forest in Bangor was such a place — an opportunity to walk among the trees and birdsong and wave at fellow recreation seekers free from the ideological pandemonium loosed upon us in most of our other social or informational encounters. But, alas, its trail maps vandalized with markers and signs planted labeling Donald Trump supporters as “ emotionally unstable, angry people.” Please, hold signs, wear T-shirts, be informed, have a dialogue, but do not visit the irrational and misplaced fruits of your angst upon nature’s peace. ~ Loran Dosen, Veazie
Schoodic Institute names interim CEO
Mainebiz - Monday, September 18, 2017 

Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park said Friday it named a longtime National Park Service educator as its acting CEO. David Manski, who spent 35 years at Acadia National Park, will start in mid-October. During his tenure at Acadia, he was instrumental in helping to establish Schoodic Institute as a National Park Service Research and Learning Center. "We are thrilled to have David Manski aboard. Schoodic Institute staff and public partners will benefit greatly from his knowledge, experience and expertise," said Schoodic Institute Chairman Alan Goldstein. Manski fills in as the nonprofit looks for a permanent successor to Mark Berry, who resigned Aug. 15 to join the Nature Conservancy, where he will be leading forest conservation initiatives in Maine.
Portland bans the display of wild and exotic animals
Portland Press Herald - Monday, September 18, 2017 

The Portland City Council voted unanimously Monday to ban the use of big cats, elephants and a wide range of other circus animals because of “cruel” training and handling practices. But Friday’s rodeo will go ahead as planned, since cattle, horses, swine, sheep and goats are exempt from the ban.
Loggers, St. Clair respond to leaked Zinke recommendation
WCSH-TV6 - Monday, September 18, 2017 

Interior Sec. Ryan Zinke reportedly made a recommendation that could potentially allow logging in the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. Those in the logging industry are hopeful it could ease restrictions on commercial logging in the region. As for long-time national monument proponents: the news of a possible change to land use is jarring. “We didn’t donate this land to be used as a commercial timbering operation,” Lucas St. Clair said. Congressman Bruce Poliquin said, “I am pleased with the Secretary’s recommendations and I believe they strike the right balance in protecting Maine jobs and our way of life.”
Trump Administration Could Allow Commercial Fishing In Marine National Monument
Maine Public - Monday, September 18, 2017 

A leaked memo from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke shows he wants to go roll back some protections for national monuments designated by former President Barack Obama. That includes the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts National Monument — the first marine monument established in the Atlantic. Conservation groups and others say that’s a bad idea.
Zinke: Open up first Atlantic monument to commercial fishing
Associated Press - Monday, September 18, 2017 

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wants to open up the first marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean to commercial fishing, according to a recommendation he made in a memo to President Donald Trump. Zinke’s memo touches on his recommendations for a host of national monuments, including Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. Former President Barack Obama designated some 5,000 square miles (12,950 square kilometers) off New England as the marine monument about a year ago. Obama’s proclamation should be amended to include commercial fishing activities regulated under federal law, Zinke’s memo said.
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