March 22, 2018  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Beekeeping & Pollinators, Mar 29
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 22, 2018 

Find out why pollinators are failing to thrive. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 29, 6 pm.
Green Fire, Mar 29
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 22, 2018 

A film about Aldo Leopold and a Land Ethic for Our Time. At Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center, Rockland, March 29, 11:30 am and 2 pm, free.
Community Conservation film, Mar 29
Event - Posted - Thursday, March 22, 2018 

Mark Ireland’s documentary profiles four land trusts in different regions of Maine, demonstrating the variety of efforts to make conserved lands available to all community members. Following the screening, Q&A with the filmmaker and local land trusts leaders. At UMaine, Orono, March 29, 7 pm. Presented by Bangor, Brewer, and Orono Land Trusts.
Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Wednesday, March 21, 2018 

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 over 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
Going Solo: Women in the Woods, Mar 28
Event - Posted - Wednesday, March 21, 2018 

Alexandra Conover Bennett, Jennifer Dumont, and Aislinn Sarnacki will discuss their outdoor experiences and what it’s like to embark on remote adventures, alone. At Greenville Town Office, March 28, 6 p.m. Hosted by Moosehead Trails.
Four-Season Gardening, Mar 27
Event - Posted - Tuesday, March 20, 2018 

Learn from the UMaine Cooperative Extension how to enjoy our gardens all year round. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 27, 12 pm.
Help wanted: Organizing Director
Announcement - Monday, March 19, 2018 

Maine Conservation Voters/Maine Conservation Alliance, two statewide, nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations, are seeking a shared full-time Organizing Director to build and manage grassroots organizing and field programs.
How to Participate in the Maine Bird Atlas, Mar 26
Event - Posted - Monday, March 19, 2018 

Rich MacDonald will talk about the history of the Maine Bird Atlas and how you can participate. At Blue Hill Library, March 26, 7 pm. Sponsored by Downeast Chapter of Maine Audubon.
Growing More Crops in Less Space, Mar 25
Event - Posted - Sunday, March 18, 2018 

Workshop leader Will Bonsai is director of the Scattered Project. He is best known for his work in preserving crop diversity. At St. Paul's Church, Brunswick, March 25, 2-3:30 pm, $5 donation. Sponsored by Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust.
Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation Ski-A-Thon, Mar 24
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 17, 2018 

Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation promotes year-round education and training for individuals with disabilities to develop skills, enhance independence, and provide enjoyment through active recreation. In addition to being an excellent fundraiser, the Ski-A-Thon is a ton of fun. Fundraising goal: $380,000.
Stand up for Federal Bird Conservation Funding
Action Alert - Saturday, March 17, 2018 

The proposed federal budget would gut major programs and protections for birds and their habitats. One-third of migratory bird species have already lost significant populations as threats to wildlife increase. Tell your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative to make protecting migratory birds a priority in the federal budget. ~ American Bird Conservancy
Earth Hour, Mar 24
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 17, 2018 

Join millions of people around the world—along with businesses, cities, and landmarks—who will turn off lights in celebration of Earth Hour. March 24, from 8:30 - 9:30 am local time.
Lessons from Avian Haven, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Friday, March 16, 2018 

Laura Suomi-Lecker will discuss Avian Haven in Freedom, which was established in 1999 as a bird rehabilitation center dedicated to the return of injured and orphaned wild birds of all species to their natural environment. In 2017, they admitted over 2,500 birds from all over the state with varying degrees of injuries or illnesses. At Blue Hill Library, March 23, 7 pm. Sponsored by Downeast Chapter of Maine Audubon.
Solar Energy for ME, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Friday, March 16, 2018 

Dylan Voorhees, Climate & Clean Energy Director for the Natural Resource Council of Maine, and Rep. Seth Berry, House Chair of the Maine Legislature's Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology, discuss expanding solar energy in Maine. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, March 23, 7 pm. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Resist Mike Pompeo’s confirmation as Secretary of State
Action Alert - Thursday, March 15, 2018 

Trump just fired Rex Tillerson, one of the few people left in his cabinet who was willing to speak out against Vladimir Putin. But even more egregious is that Trump nominated Mike Pompeo, a xenophobic, pro-torture, climate-denying war hawk, to replace Tillerson.
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News Items
Young girl starts foundation to help those with Lyme disease
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Wednesday, March 7, 2018 

You should check out this wonderful foundation that a young girl from Denver, Colorado started and leads to help kids with Lyme disease and to find a cure for this tick-born illness. I am sure I don’t have to tell you what a terrible problem we have in Maine with deer ticks and Lyme disease, as well as the other diseases you can get from these ticks which have now spread statewide.
Proposed tariffs on Canadian steel could backfire on Maine
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, March 7, 2018 

President Trump said he will impose 25 percent tariffs on all foreign-made steel and 10 percent on aluminum in order to regrow those industries in this country. Canada is the largest exporter of both products to the United States, leading to fears of a trade war between the neighboring countries, who are each other’s largest trading partners. He claimed he would sign the measure this week. The president of one of the largest metals distributors in Maine and New England said that while he supports the president’s desire to impose tariffs on steel from China, doing so on Canadian imports is a terrible mistake that will have significant consequences for New England manufacturers.
North Atlantic Right Whales Are Near Extinction. We Can Avert It.
New York Times - Wednesday, March 7, 2018 

Only about 450 North Atlantic right whales remain. Once decimated by commercial whaling, the right whale had been thought to be making a slow return in recent decades. But their recovery has since faltered and their numbers are declining. First, we have to reduce ship strikes further. Second, we need to eliminate the dangerous, inhumane gantlet of fishing line. Lower-strength rope could reduce life-threatening entanglements by 72 percent while still enabling trap fishermen to maintain their haul. Finally, the federal government and research institutions supported by private foundations should invest in the research and development of “ropeless” fishing technologies that raise traps electronically. ~ Deborah Cramer, visiting scholar at M.I.T.’s Environmental Solutions Initiative
Letter: Column behind on plastic bag facts
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, March 7, 2018 

In the Feb. 28 column “Bag ban is ‘people control'” about our community effort to ban plastic shopping bags at certain businesses in Waterville the author, Dan Libby, has some outdated inaccuracies. It costs Waterville businesses money to hand out plastic bags for free at checkout. Hannaford pays $32 for a box of 2,000. That’s 1.6 cents per bag. Imagine how much money Hannaford and other large stores would save if plastic bags were banned. We are encouraging people to bring a reusable shopping bag to the store instead of using plastic bags. However, paper bags will still be available at checkout. ~ Linda Woods, Waterville
North Star Adventures Trip Log: Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
Other - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

As a school teacher, one of the many perks of my job certainly includes February break (I teach Emergency Medical Services). Sometimes I’m not certain who is more excited for the break—teachers or the students. The vacation week allows me to enjoy the beauty of the Maine winter, and plan extended visits to some of the more scenic spots our state has to offer. For this winter break, our group’s destination was Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.
Local food sovereignty law proposed at Starks town meeting
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Residents of Starks will be presented with a proposal at Town Meeting on Saturday that intends to give them food sovereignty and self-sufficiency when it comes to raising and distributing local food. Starks Selectman Paul Frederick said there is support for local control over food production and distribution. “It’s kind of a philosophical statement,” he said. “If a farm family wants to sell produce to the passing public at their property, they can certainly do that.”
Geocache: Great Pond Mountain Wildlands in Orland
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Geocaching is one of the many activities people enjoy in the Great Pond Mountain Wildlands, which is home to two vast trail networks used for hiking, biking, skiing and horseback riding. Totaling 4,500 acres, the Wildlands is broken up into two parcels, the Hothole Valley Parcel and Dead River Parcel, in the town of Orland.
Maine Sea Grant Program names new director
Mainebiz - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Gayle Zydlewski, an associate professor in the University of Maine School of Marine Sciences, has been named director of the Maine Sea Grant College Program, effective July 1. Zydlewski, who has a doctorate degree in oceanography from UMaine, has more than 20 years of experience as a researcher and faculty member at UMaine and Washington State University. She also served as a supervisory fishery biologist at the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in Longview, Wash.
Trump's Interior Secretary Claimed Wind Power Leads to Global Warming. His Numbers Are Wrong
TIME - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

In a speech before oil and gas industry executives, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke argued that the production and transportation of wind turbines contributes to global warming, but he overstated the factual case. Zinke also echoed a long-held argument from President Donald Trump that wind turbines kill birds. “We probably chop up as many as 750,000 birds a year with wind and the carbon footprint on wind is significant,” Zinke said. Spread out over the life cycle of a turbine, scientists estimate that the typical wind plant generates between .02 and .04 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent per kilowatt-hour of electricity produced. Even at the high end, that’s less than 3% of the emissions from coal-generated electricity and less than 7% of the emissions from natural gas-generated electricity. Scientific studies peg the actual number of bird deaths as anywhere from 20,000 to 573,000 a year.
Perth High School salmon conservation project given international status
Other - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Daily Record (Scotland) - Perth High School’s salmon conservation programme has been officially given observer status by the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organisation in Sweden, after it helped to connect Perth teenagers with 250 other secondary school pupils from across the Atlantic region. Later this year, the group will be travelling to Germany to learn about the salmon industry on the River Elbe, with a trip next year to the East Machias River in Maine and the Miramichi River in Canada’s New Brunswick to mark the international year of the salmon.
Taking on 'microfiber' pollution, a laundry room at a time
Associated Press - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

The fight to keep tiny pollutants from reaching the dinner plate might start in the laundry room. Innovators are coming up with tools to keep tiny pieces of thread that are discharged with washing machine effluent from reaching marine life. Such "microfibers" are too small to be caught in conventional filters, so they eventually pass through sewage plants, wash out to waterways, and can be eaten or absorbed by marine animals, some later served up as seafood.
Important news if you hunt turkeys or hate turkeys
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Brad Allen, one of DIFW’s best wildlife biologists, wrote an interesting column in the March edition of Northwoods Sporting Journal, reporting that the agency’s “wild turkey reintroduction program throughout the state” has been “highly successful.” That’s an understatement! Brad’s “objective is to stabilize wild turkey populations in portions of southern and central Maine where nuisance wildlife issues are the greatest." We need more turkey hunters, and we need those hunters to kill more turkeys.
Maine man uses bread knife to kill rabid raccoon that attacked his dog
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

When Charlie Weidman discovered Zeke, his family’s dog, tangling with a wounded, rabid raccoon, he didn’t drown the varmint in a puddle the way fellow Hope resident Rachel Borch did last summer. He didn’t have a puddle, but he did have a dull 10-inch bread knife. So he used it to slit the raccoon’s throat, saving the life of his 10-year-old pet and adding to the little town of Hope’s growing legacy for inventive ways to vanquish rabid raccoons.
Fishery Fest Isn't Wholly Mackerel: Smelts, Salmon in Focus
Associated Press - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Down East Maine's annual celebration of fried smelts and migrating fish is scheduled for April 21 in Columbia Falls. The 18th Annual Smelt Fry & World Fish Migration Day Celebration will take over the tiny community that day. The event began as a community potluck and has grown into a regional event that attracts hundreds of people. The Downeast Salmon Federation uses the event as a way to educate the public about conservation of migratory fish. There will also be smoked mackerel, venison stew and a fried smelt dinner, finished off with dessert made with local blueberries. The event also includes activities and displays about conservation of fish species and their habitats.
Editorial: Quebec hydro line could leverage new pipe for gas
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Massachusetts wants to put a transmission line across Maine, which would bring Canadian hydro power to the Bay State, but won't allow a gas line at home. Such a stark policy divide doesn’t make sense. Gas is a cleaner fuel than oil or coal, and the exploitation of low-cost, domestic gas has done more to reduce carbon emissions than the fast and welcome growth of wind and solar power. If the transmission project is going to go through, however, it would be nice if Gov. LePage, who claims to be a tough negotiator, could trade Maine’s willingness to help Massachusetts in this matter with getting that state to take another look at a natural gas pipeline.
Opinion: Instead of fee on efficient vehicles, Maine should overhaul highway funding system
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

L.D. 1806, a hybrid vehicle tax proposal from the administration of Republican Gov. Paul LePage would collect an annual registration fee on the highly efficient vehicles in the amount of $150 for gas-electric hybrid cars and $250 for all-electric models. While billed as a way to achieve tax parity with gasoline vehicles and give the state’s crumbling infrastructure a cash infusion, the proposal would in fact punish drivers for choosing more-efficient vehicles. Maine should look at ways to overhaul its funding system altogether. For example, instead of using gasoline consumption, Maine could charge based on vehicle miles traveled. In a more sophisticated system, charges could be adjusted based on the weight of the vehicle – since heavier vehicles do more damage to the roads. ~ Nicholas John and Josiah Neeley, R Street Institute, a nonprofit think tank that promotes free markets and limited, effective government
Opinion: Prevent overdevelopment of the Munjoy Hill neighborhood
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Unless the energized residents of the Hill are able to convince Portland’s Planning Board and City Council to reverse changes to the recently liberalized R-6 residential zone or to adopt a conservation district for the neighborhood, there is a good chance that much of the architectural amenity that has led to Munjoy Hill’s recent renaissance will be lost forever. Our goal should be to permit and facilitate development of the kind and scale that presently exists, including larger structures where circumstances permit, but to discourage and prevent the overdevelopment that threatens the charm and amenity of the Munjoy Hill residential neighborhood. ~ Peter L. Murray, Portland’s East End
Letter: Don’t weaken fuel efficiency standard
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, March 6, 2018 

Our transportation sector is reliant on fossil fuels and is also the single largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions, the primary cause of climate change. Yet, Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, has introduced a bill that could effectively weaken the corporate average fuel economy standards for the auto industry, set to go from 30.3 miles per gallon to 46.3 mpg by 2025. Automakers have the technology available to meet the goals — electric vehicles. Maine’s transportation sector consumes over 15 million barrels of oil, exporting over $2.4 billion petro-based dollars in the process. Any effort to reduce Maine’s oil dependence bears huge dividends in greenhouse gas emissions reductions and enhanced economic vitality. Be sure to thank our Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King, who do not support this bill. ~ Barry Woods, ReVision Energy, South Portland
New Report Predicts Rising Tides, More Flooding
National Public Radio - Monday, March 5, 2018 

Some of the worst flooding during this weekend's East Coast storm happened during high tides. Shoreline tides are getting progressively higher. A soon-to-be-published report obtained by NPR predicts a future where flooding will be a weekly event in some coastal parts of the country.
Massicotte and his dogs race to record ninth Can-Am Crown 250 victory
Fiddlehead Focus (St. John Valley, Aroostook County) - Monday, March 5, 2018 

Martin Massicotte of St-Tite, Quebec, won his ninth Irving Woodlands Can-Am Crown 250 when he crossed the finish line at 3:09 a.m. Monday at Lonesome Pine Trails, breaking the record eight wins he set last year. This is the musher’s fifth straight victory in the longest and most grueling of the three Can-Am Crown International Sled Dog Races. Massicotte was one of 13 mushers who took off from downtown Fort Kent Saturday morning in the 250-mile race. Another 23 teams competed in the 30-mile race, and 18 ran in the 100-mile race.
As Storms Batter Electric Grid, More Mainers Consider Cutting the Cable
Maine Public - Monday, March 5, 2018 

For those who dream of living “off the grid,” the motivation might be to leave smaller carbon footprint or to avoid the prohibitive cost of running utility lines hundreds of feet to a home off-the-beaten path. Some solar panel installers say they are additionally receiving an increasing number of inquiries from homeowners who have had it with lengthy and repeated power outages.
Meetings About Oil Drilling on Tap For Maine, New Hampshire
WABI-TV5 - Monday, March 5, 2018 

Opponents of the Trump administration's proposal to expand offshore drilling say it poses a grave threat to New Hampshire's marine ecosystem and economy. Federal officials will be in northern New England this week to meet with the public about the possibility of searching for oil and gas on the Outer Continental Shelf.
Art Speaks: IMRC artist resonates with the crowd
Maine Campus - Monday, March 5, 2018 

As a sculptor, artist and educator, Andy Mauery has been teaching at UMaine since 2000. “I approach art through the lens of the human,” Mauery said. “I want to make plain the complexities of life.” Mauery’s sculptural work incorporates fibers and human hair into different figures that represent many of the problems humans deal with in our everyday lives, and some of the problems we create in our world and for the environment. She also creates pieces that relate to endangered species, human existence, animal extinction and death, as well as barriers and curtains.
Meetings About Oil Drilling On Tap For Maine, New Hampshire
Associated Press - Monday, March 5, 2018 

Federal officials will be in northern New England this week to meet with the public about the possibility of searching for oil and gas on the Outer Continental Shelf. The meetings are hosted by the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and are scheduled for Monday in Concord, New Hampshire, and on Wednesday in Augusta, Maine. The meetings follow up on an executive order by President Trump entitled "Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy.'' The proposal has attracted resistance from environmental activists and some members of government. Last month, the Maine House of Representatives passed a resolution calling on President Donald Trump to leave Maine out of offshore oil and gas drilling.
'Confidential:' New Vineyard company makes White House Easter eggs
Sun Journal - Monday, March 5, 2018 

Shh! It’s sort of an egg secret. Maine Wood Concepts is making this year’s official colorful, collectible wooden eggs for the White House Easter Egg Roll — but staff members at the company say they are not allowed to talk about it. Eight of the past 11 years, the famous eggs have been made by a competitor, Wells Wood Turning and Finishing in Buckfield.
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