June 16, 2019  
Email link to Maine Association of Conservation Commissions Annual Conference, Apr 27
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News Items
Please visit a Maine sporting camp
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

I hope you will visit a Maine sporting camp this summer or fall. There is no better place to experience everything we love about Maine. Sporting camps offer everything from great food to lots of wildlife, woods, and waters, plus of course, great hunting and fishing. But you don’t have to be a hunter or angler to thoroughly enjoy a visit to a Maine sporting camp.
Kids should spend beautiful summer days outside roaming, educator says
Bangor Metro - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Kids need real wild things and experiences, as well as information. There’s a field of study, a field of endeavor, a conservation trust field outside of town, a field of dreams, a big woods — with kids and their pocket magnifying glasses examining rare butterflies and wildflowers. Perhaps we’re on the verge of fields where such quantum leaps of inquiry and imagination take place that mere test score increases seem paltry measures of learning. ~ Todd R. Nelson, retired school principal Penobscot
Opinion: Trump war on science is grounds to impeach
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Trump and his administration are slashing common-sense regulations and censoring science to enrich their fossil fuel industry backers, exposing the country and the whole world to potentially catastrophic consequences. They are literally willing to endanger human lives and the very future of humanity for corporate profit. Governments that respect democracy, transparency and truth don’t systematically obstruct scientific research and harass scientists. This is obstruction and collusion of the worst and highest order. If the comparatively venal case of Russiagate is grounds for impeachment, why isn’t this? ~ Basav Sen, Climate Policy Project, Institute for Policy Studies
Letter: Investing in clean energy will benefit Maine’s environment, create jobs
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

As Mainers, we’re fortunate enough to have access to clean water and natural resources that are not accessible by all across our country. By switching to a renewable-energy economy, we are not only benefiting our environment, but also creating jobs in the process. It would be easy to believe that climate change isn’t already impacting some of our communities, but that’s not the case. Rising sea levels, increased flooding and the threat of lobsters migrating north are already challenges we must face. That’s why we must invest in renewable energy. We must step up and urge our elected officials to take action and support this legislation for our collective future. ~ Jackson Chadwick, Camden
Letter: Upgrade solar energy policy
Sun Journal - Saturday, June 15, 2019 

Maine is falling behind while other states are growing their economies, saving money on energy costs for their people and businesses and creating good local jobs. How are they doing it? Solar power. Community solar farms are a particularly exciting way to increase access and allow low- and moderate-income Mainers to invest in solar energy and save money on their bills. Maine can enjoy all of these benefits, but the Legislature must pass LD 1711 and modernize the solar energy policy now. ~ Erin Walter, Sabattus
Bill would limit lobbyists’ contributions to Maine candidates year-round
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Maine could place a year-round ban on political candidates accepting contributions from lobbyists outside their districts under a bill facing Democratic Gov. Janet Mills. The bill would prevent gubernatorial and legislative candidates from accepting contributions at any time from lobbyists outside their districts. The bill wouldn’t apply to lobbyists who are eligible voters in a candidate’s district, or to contributions from these lobbyists’ employers.
Bald Eagle Caught Elegantly...Swimming?
Maine Public - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Bald eagles are really good at swimming, a fact some of us learned this week from a viral video.
Officials turn to alum treatment to prevent algae blooms in Cochnewagon Lake in Monmouth
Kennebec Journal - Friday, June 14, 2019 

The water in Cochnewagon Lake is crystal clear — and it’ll stay that way for years to come thanks to a recent alum treatment. “It was getting so green, it looked like you could walk on it in spots,” said Joe Saunders, who is a Cochnewagon Lake resident and a member of the Cobbossee Watershed Board of Directors representing Monmouth.
Somerset commissioner resigns from nonprofit board after conflict of interest accusation
Morning Sentinel - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Lloyd Trafton, a Somerset County commissioner, has a jurisdiction that includes parts of Somerset County where the NECEC project would cut a new corridor for a Quebec-to-Massachusetts power line. He also sits on the board of directors for Western Mountains & Rivers Corp., a nonprofit that negotiated for a $22 million benefits package from Central Maine Power in exchange for support of the project. Trafton received backlash from opponents of NECEC over his role in interviewing candidates to represent Somerset County on the Land Use Planning Commission, which will play a key role in issuing permits for the NECEC. On Thursday he submitted his resignation from the Western Mountains & Rivers board.
Opinion: Despite Trump, renewable energy capacity now exceeds coal’s
Kennebec Journal - Friday, June 14, 2019 

April marked a threshold for the nation. For the first time, our capacity for creating electricity from renewable sources crept past that for coal. Yes, that’s good. Not good enough, to save us from the worst effects of climate change from global warming, but it’s evidence that we’re at least moving in the right direction. And that comes despite President Donald Trump’s inane insistence that the nation drill more, burn more and export more fossil fuels — including his doubled-down promises to single-handedly save the American coal industry. Global coal use has gone up in recent years as developing countries — many of them aided by China — bring coal plants online. That’s a threat that the world needs to confront. But don’t expect Trump to lead that necessary charge. ~ Scott Martelle, Scarborough native, Los Angeles Times columnist
2 hikers rescued after slipping on wet granite in Acadia National Park
Bangor Daily News - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Two hikers were rescued in separate incidents at Acadia National Park on Wednesday. The first involved a 47-year-old woman who had slipped on wet granite on the Gorge Path, which runs between Cadillac and Dorr mountains. After 3½ hours, rescuers were able to carry her to an ambulance. Soon after, rescuers were called to the Norumbega Mountain Trail where a 67-year-old man had also fallen on wet granite, resulting in a 2½-hour rescue.
Trump nominates unqualified NOAA Administrator
Other - Friday, June 14, 2019 

The position of NOAA Administrator is of enormous importance. NOAA is responsible for the protection of threatened and endangered marine species such as whales, seals, sea lions, and sea turtles. Previous presidents have filled that job with meteorologists, Naval admirals, oceanographers, environmental scientists, geologists, and even a highly-trained NASA astronaut. It is critically-important that the role be filled with someone with a demonstrated respect and understanding of scientific methods that will approach the job with the goal of preserving and protecting our oceans. The Trump Administration has again nominated Barry Myers, a non-scientist with questionable ethics and a history of attacking NOAA, to head that agency.
Island Explorer celebrates 20th Anniversary
Other - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Partners of the Island Explorer bus system gathered Friday, June 14th to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Island Explorer bus system and the integration of 21 new propane-powered buses into the fleet. The Island Explorer is a fare-free transportation system linking hotels, campgrounds, and inns with destinations in Acadia National Park and area villages. Since 1999, the bus system has carried over 7.7 million passengers, reduced private automobile traffic by more than 2.9 million vehicles, and prevented the emission of an estimated 41 tons of smog-causing pollutants and 27,000 tons of greenhouse gases.
Maine entrepreneurs to wade into ocean-reliant businesses at event
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Startup Maine, an annual training and networking event for entrepreneurs in Portland, is adding an industry to its lineup this year with speakers and workshops focused on the ocean-reliant “blue economy.” Workshops geared toward maritime entrepreneurs will include a session on the business of aquaculture, and another focused on exporting local products from Maine and New England. Absent from this year’s program are workshops and speakers focused on agriculture and another hot topic in Maine entrepreneurial circles, recreational cannabis.
A moose walks into a pizza place…and even in Dover-Foxcroft that’s a surprise
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 14, 2019 

A moose broke through a window and into a former pizza shop on East Main Street in Dover-Foxcroft on Friday morning, resulting in a flurry of comments and jokes about the perpetrator pictured in a post on the Dover-Foxcroft Police Facebook page. While seeing a moose in downtown is not unusual for this rural town of about 4,200 residents located an hour south of Moosehead Lake – which is prime moose country – having one breaking and entering is, said Sheila Bragg in the Dover-Foxcroft Town Office. The moose population in Maine is estimated between 50,000 and 70,000, state biologists say.
New route, same reasons for Trek Across Maine
Sun Journal - Friday, June 14, 2019 

A steady stream of cyclists in the 35th Trek Across Maine rounded the corner at Lisbon Street onto Pine Street in Lewiston midmorning Friday with the help of some signs and a few police cars. The route, beginning in Brunswick and passing over the train trestle between Auburn and Lewiston, was a first for the 1,400 riders in the annual three-day benefit ride. Over its 35 years, the trek has raised nearly $25 million for the American Lung Association.
A Trump Official Consulted With Climate-Change Deniers, Emails Show
TIME - Friday, June 14, 2019 

A Trump administration national security official has sought help from advisers to a think tank that disavows climate change to challenge widely accepted scientific findings on global warming, according to his emails. The request from William Happer, a member of the National Security Council, is included in emails obtained by the Environmental Defense Fund. In a March 3 email exchange Happer and Heartland adviser Hal Doiron discuss Happer’s scientific arguments in a paper attempting to knock down climate change. “These people are endangering all of us by promoting anti-science in service of fossil fuel interests over the American interests,” said Pennsylvania State University climate scientist Michael Mann.
Column: Cedar waxwings are social nomads, controllers of pests
Bangor Daily News - Friday, June 14, 2019 

I was in first grade when American goldfinches got me excited about birds. They were so yellow. Nothing in my crayon box could match their brilliance. But if goldfinches were the bait, it was cedar waxwings that set the hook. A beautiful bird, a social nomad, a controller of pests and disperser of seeds and a hopeless romantic. That makes an impression on a fourth-grader. ~ Bob Duchesne
Ticks kill 50 percent of moose calves in Maine, but that’s not the case in the rest of North America
Bangor Daily News - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Research by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has confirmed that winter ticks are moose killers, and in some years, more than 50 percent of moose calves in the research study have succumbed after serving as hosts to thousands of ticks. At the North American Moose Conference, a gathering of moose researchers that was held at the Sugarloaf resort this week, biologists from other states and provinces shared their own views on ticks, global climate change that has helped ticks thrive and other threats to the moose herds that they manage. And while winter ticks aren’t a universal threat, moose are facing a variety of other threats in different ecosystems.
Letter: Legislators should support solar bill
Kennebec Journal - Friday, June 14, 2019 

Maine needs more solar jobs for young people like me who want to be in rural Maine but need work to do so. This June, I started a job in Maine working for Maine Solar Solutions. This will give me the opportunity to acquire enough hours and experience to become a licensed electrical journeyman. Soon legislators will consider L.D. 1711, which would move Maine’s solar energy industry forward. By using market mechanisms, this bill will attract investment and solar energy development to the state that will help us lower our energy costs, produce more local renewable power, and protect clean air in the state. ~ Thomas Hopf-lovette, Litchfield
Bill Would Guarantee Funding for Land and Water Conservation Fund
Natural Resources Council of Maine - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Land and water conservation projects nationwide would receive a big boost from a bipartisan bill introduced this week to guarantee full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), one of the nation’s most important conservation programs. The bill, HR 3195, introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives would provide $900 million annually. In Maine, more than $190 million from LWCF has contributed to the protection of beloved landmarks such as Acadia National Park, Sebago Lake State Park, the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, and the Allagash Wilderness Waterway, while also protecting trails, ball fields, historic landmarks, and community open space and recreation projects. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King have co-sponsored a Senate companion bill to permanently fund the LWCF at a full $900 million a year.
Mills’ vetoes of CMP bills survive override votes in House
Portland Phoenix - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

The Maine House voted Thursday to uphold Gov. Janet Mills’ vetoes of two bills sought by opponents of Central Maine Power’s controversial transmission line proposal. One bill, L.D. 1383, would have required electric utilities to obtain approval from local governments before using eminent domain to take private land for transmission line projects. Supporters failed to garner the two-thirds majority needed to overturn Mills’ veto in the House on a 79-64 vote. The second measure, L.D. 1363, would require an electric utility to receive approval from two-thirds of the municipalities through which a transmission line project passes. The veto override vote failed 75-68 Thursday.
Opinion: Profits from Maine water should be shared with all Maine residents
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Here in Maine, we have just about the best water you can find, which makes it especially valuable. People all over the world desire our water, and those who bottle and sell it enjoy huge financial gains. A portion of those gains should be going back to the state and to all the people who reside here. There’s a simple solution to assure Maine is benefiting from the sale of our water: place an excise tax on the extraction of groundwater or surface water for commercial bottling for sale. If we place just a 5-cent-per-gallon tax on water extracted from the ground for the purpose of bottling, the state would receive an extra $60 million each year. ~ Rep. Lori K. Gramlich, Old Orchard Beach
Lobstermen tackle ways to adapt to whale protection rules
Other - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Island Ad-Vantages -Protecting the North Atlantic right whale while minimizing the impact to commercial lobstermen is being discussed up and down the coast, as Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher meets with lobster zone councils this month. North Atlantic right whales, listed as an endangered species since 1970 under federal law, can get tangled in the vertical, or end lines that attach lobster traps to trawl lines, with fatal results. David Tarr, who sits on the state Lobster Advisory Council, said that gear found on ensnared whales is bigger than the gear used by Maine fishermen. One way to show this is to require color-coded tags on end lines to help identify where the whale became ensnared, inshore or offshore Maine or in Massachusetts or Canadian waters.
Saving Seaweed Via Maine Property Law
Other - Thursday, June 13, 2019 

Law360 - What happens when a regulatory agency isn't interested in protecting a vital coastal seaweed that forms the base of an entire marine ecosystem?
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