September 16, 2019  
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

The Ecology of the Heath, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 17, 2019 

Naturalist Fred Cichocki will describe the ecology of the 12-acre heath at Cathance Rive Nature Preserve in Topsham and other sphagnum moss wetlands. At Topsham Public Library, September 24, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
LUPC to Hold Public Meeting on Approved Fish River Lakes Concept Plan, Sep 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 17, 2019 

The Maine Land Use Planning Commission staff will hold an open house and public meeting regarding the Fish River Chain of Lakes Concept Plan. At Caribou Inn and Convention Center, September 25, Open House 6 pm; Public Meeting 6:30 pm.
Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond; hey, we're all connected). We have posted summaries and links to 60,000 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
Oppose CMP's transmission corridor
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Ask Maine’s Congressional delegation to urge the Army Corps for an Environmental Impact Statement and public hearing on Central Maine Power’s proposal for a transmission corridor through Western Maine. ~ Nick Bennett, NRCM
No logging in the Tongass National Forest
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

The Amazon is burning, yet Donald Trump wants to open the world's largest intact temperate forest to mining and logging exploitation. He is opening 10 million acres in the Tongass National Forest to brutal exploitation. Tongass retains more carbon than any forest in the U.S., provides habitat for iconic wild creatures and contains old-growth trees as much as 1,000 years old. Don't let Trump destroy it. ~ CREDO Action
York Beach Clean Up, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Join a beach clean up & attempt to set a world record spelling the largest "NO PLANET B" ever in the sand. The goal is 500 people At Long Sands Beach, York, September 23, 9 am - 12:30 pm.
Guided Canoe Trip with Ryan Linehan, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Delve into themes of industry, waterways, and the environment, with conversation in art galleries and on the Messalonskee River. At Colby Colby Museum of Art, Waterville, September 22, 12-4 pm, pre-registration required.
Tumbledown trail maintenance, guided hike scheduled, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

A 4.7 mile round-trip guided hike up Tumbledown Mountain will include discussion of geology, trees and plants, history, wildlife and issues facing the mountain. Meet at Brook Trailhead on Byron Road, Weld, September 22, 9 am - 2 pm.
Portland Electric Car Ride & Drive, Sep 21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Learn about electric cars during the 5th annual EV Expo. At Back Cove parking area off Preble Street, Portland, September 21, 12-4 pm, free pizza & coffee. Hosted by Natural Resources Council of Maine and ReVision Energy.
Smithsonian Museum Day, Sep 21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

An annual celebration of boundless curiosity hosted by Smithsonian magazine. At L.C. Bates Museum, Hinckley, September 21, 10 am - 4:30 pm.
Common Ground Country Fair, Sep 20-22
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

More than 750 varied events at this annual celebration of rural living with a mix of workshops, demonstrations, music, vendors, farmers’ markets, fantastic food and more. At Unity, September 20-22, gates open daily at 9 am.
Life Happens Outside Festival, Sep 20-21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

At L.L. Bean Discovery Park, Freeport, September 20, 6:30 pm, food trucks; 7:15 pm, Maine Outdoor Film Festival. September 21, 10 am - 4 pm, climbing, biking, talks, exhibits. Free but donations benefit Teens To Trails.
Climate Strike, Sep 20-27
Action Alert - Friday, September 13, 2019 

It’s time to build a renewable energy economy that works for everyone. Join in the streets September 20 and the week after to demand climate justice for all.
• Portland City Hall, Sep 20, 12 pm
• Bowdoin Art Museum steps, Brunswick, Sep 29, 10 am
• Meetinghouse gazebo, Farmington, Sep 20, 12 pm
• Longley Square Park, Norway, Sep 20, 4:30 pm
• Sidewalk at Main and Temple St, Waterville, Sep 20, 4 pm
• Front of Bangor High School, Sep 20, 11 am
• Resistance Corner, Downtown Belfast, Sep 20, 12 pm
• Bar Harbor Village Green, Sep 20, 12 pm
• Dike on Route 1, Machias, Sep 20, 1:30 pm

Global Climate Strike, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

Take to the streets for the Global Climate Strike to make sure elected officials and candidates for office in 2020 hear us loud and clear. Strikes in Maine at Farmington and Bar Harbor, September 20. ~ 350 Action
Bryant Pond 4-H Camp and Learning Center, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

Ron and Deidre Fournier will speak about the Bryant Pond 4-H Camp and Learning Center. At meeting of the Oxford County Educators Association-Retired, Universalist Church, West Paris, September 20, 1 pm.
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News Items
Opinion: Aquaculture poses threat to the lobster industry
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

As president of the Maine Lobstering Union, I know we have struggled with several concerns this summer from right whales to bait shortages to aquaculture leases. We need to take steps now to fix rules and regulations around aquaculture. If we don’t, it will encroach on ocean space for everyone. The lease sizes have gotten so large we are making Maine’s oceans attractive to out-of-state corporations. A corporation, business or individual can own 1,000 acres of the ocean. The leases can now be held for 20 years and they can be transferred without a mandatory public hearing. It’s time to make sure the rules and regulations are in place, so we aren’t losing our lobstering industry. ~ Rock Alley, Jonesport

Waters off the coast of Maine vulnerable to changing climate
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Clams, the basis of livelihood for generations of diggers from Cape Porpoise to Lubec, are back, at least for now, their numbers slowly recovering from a climate-driven disaster that will almost certainly strike again. The Gulf of Maine is the second fastest-warming portion of the world’s oceans, a vast laboratory for ocean scientists studying how global warming affects the marine environment and for policymakers trying to figure out how to minimize the damage to fisheries, communities or, as in the case of the 2012 lobster glut, civic peace. Their discoveries underscore the seriousness of the changes and the complexity of the required policy responses.
Free community college program teaches next generation of Maine loggers
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

The Professional Logging Contractors of Maine partnered with Maine Community College System, and companies like Milton CAT and Nortrax, to help Maine’s logging industry weather a tight labor market. It can cost as much as $100,000 to train a first-year employee with no prior experience. “It’s not sustainable,” said Dana Doran, executive director of the trade group. Free tuition is part of the draw for students. After 12 weeks of training, the graduates can expect to earn between $45,000 and $50,000 a year. Jobs are available throughout the state.
Could Millinocket become the next mountain bike mecca?
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Matt Polstein has been at the forefront of ecotourism in Maine for a quarter- century as the founder and owner of New England Outdoor Center on the outskirts of Millinocket. The outdoors resort caters to snowmobilers, Nordic skiers, hikers, canoeists, rafting enthusiasts – and most recently, mountain bikers. Now, as executive director of Katahdin Area Trails, Polstein and others are working to turn Millinocket into a mountain bike mecca – one they think will bring significant economic impact to the former mill town. The vision: To build the trail system from Polstein’s resort to the heart of Millinocket, 10 miles to the southeast and throughout the forested region.
Column: When it comes to migration, timing is everything
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

The fall departure of those breeding birds is equally interesting but much more poorly documented than the spring sightings of various migratory breeding birds. To improve our understanding of the rhythm of Maine fall migration, I used the eBird database. Of the 85 species analyzed, 64 conformed to the expected pattern: earliest departures from the North Region and latest departures from the South Region. Eleven species showed no difference between two regions. Ten species showed surprising patterns. Spotted sandpipers departed last from the North Region. Nine species departed last from the Central Region. I think the explanation lies in the quality of the stopover habitat. ~ Herb Wilson
Column: Answers in the debate among bowhunters
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Deer hunting has its unique topics for debate. Among bowhunters, the most contentious is probably fixed versus mechanical broadheads. Mechanical heads offer several distinct advantages. ~ Bob Humphrey
Column: Beauty so close you might miss it
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

All of Maine is so beautiful it makes me want to yell sometimes. We’ve got everything! Beaches? You want them rocky or sandy? Mountains? Plenty! Lakes, rivers, brooks, streams, and ponds? All present and accounted for! Even driving along the highway — which in most states is the most boring part of travel — the scenery is gorgeous, particularly in the fall. Sometimes being surrounded by such beauty can make you complacent about it; I always forget what a blessing it is to not have billboards until I leave Maine and go through another state. Living in Maine, constantly surrounded by natural beauty — beauty made much easier to see with our clean air — it can be easy to start to take it for granted. I, for one, will not be taking it for granted any longer — starting with the stars. ~ Victoria Hugo-Vidal
Opinion: One person can make a difference, even in today’s world
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Today, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the challenges facing the world. But act we must! Instead of letting powerlessness take over, we owe it to ourselves and others to do what we can to leave our world better than we found it. It’s helpful to choose just one or two problems to focus on – something that you care deeply about. My top priority is addressing climate change and protecting the Earth so it remains habitable for future generations. Financial support is just as important. The limiting factor for most nonprofits is money, so a generous donation can be game changing for a well-run organization. Together we can make a big difference. ~ Marcia Harrington, Brunswick, Natural Resources Council of Maine board member
Letter: Fair event terrorizes innocent animals
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

I read with horror and dismay the front-page story about mutton busting at the Litchfield Fair. What a cruel way to treat an innocent animal. What an awful and cruel lesson for children. The story tells about the protective gear the child wears and the terror the animal experiences. This practice should be banned. ~ Nancy Blethen, Hallowell
Letter: Towns must hit pause on CMP project
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Opposition to the Central Maine Power corridor proposal has surged in the last 14 months as Mainers learn about its negative impacts. 23 towns have either rescinded support or oppose the corridor. Polling shows that over 70% of Mainers know that the CMP corridor is a bad deal for Maine. These town votes, however, are non-binding. The next step for towns is to enact an electrical transmission corridor moratorium ordinance, which would serve as a pause in any electricity transmission corridor development in a town for 180 days. Let’s press pause, then stop the CMP corridor. ~ Sandi Howard, Say NO to NECEC, Caratunk
Letter: Maine energy planning should be open and democratic
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

Corporations are not democracies. The decarbonized world of 2050 must look very different from the exploitative high-consumption world we live in now. Assuredly, though, a decarbonized 2050 won’t come through incremental steps like recycling alone, or worse, through undemocratic projects like the Central Maine Power corridor with its built-in private profit motive to generate and sell more electricity that, in turn, fuels demand and is itself fueled by other forms of ecological plunder. The Maine Public Utilities Commission is seeking decarbonization plans from private firms. Where is the vision from our elected officials that can inspire our vote? ~ Eben Rose, South Portland
Letter: Say ‘no’ to e-bikes on Acadia’s uniquely beautiful carriage roads
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

John D. Rockefeller Jr. clearly stipulated that motorized vehicles would never be allowed on the carriage roads his family donated to Acadia National Park. The carriage roads, which took 30 years to build and over 13 years to restore, are unequaled in the National Park System. I have spent many reverent hours walking on the carriage roads in wonder of the miraculous planning and details that went into these roads. The roads are shared by walkers, joggers, bikers, horses and carriages. They can get congested at times, and adding e-bikes to the mix (as directed by the Interior Department) would have a harmful effect on the roads and the habitats of the flora and fauna within the park. Say “no” to e-bikes on these amazing pathways of history. ~ Jan Jukkola, Bridgton
Homeowner asks for bat-removal tips
Sun Journal - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Q: I have a bat problem. What can I do? A: Hire a professional if you suspect a big fat bat family is nesting in your house and/or porch. You don’t want an exterminator company. Many Maine bat species are protected under the Endangered Species Act and all species of bats are classified as protected wildlife and cannot be killed. You want Wildlife Services of Maine.
Game wardens rescue woman lost overnight in Rumford woods
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Firefighters and game wardens in Rumford on Friday rescued a Hanover woman who spent Thursday night lost in the woods. Elaine Makos, 76, had gone hiking by herself Thursday on the Whitecap Mountain Trails off East Andover Road in Rumford when she became lost, according to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Makos spent Thursday night in the woods, then spent most of the following day trying to walk out before calling for help shortly before 5 p.m. Friday, the department said. Makos was located after she was instructed by Warden Brock Clukey to call 911, which provided GPS coordinates to police dispatch and ground searchers.
BikeMaine wraps up tour with lunch in Waterville
Morning Sentinel - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

BikeMaine tour riders rolled into Waterville on Saturday, completing their 324.6 mile ride from Head of Falls on the banks of the Kennebec River around the midcoast of Maine and back again to Waterville. Head of Falls and the RiverWalk on Front Street were once again the welcome zone for the approximately 450 riders who took part in the weeklong ride. The cyclists, 339 of whom came from out of state, spent seven days rolling through 35 towns across the region and returned to Head of Falls on Saturday to feast on a celebratory lunch from noon to 3 p.m. he weeklong ride has brought about $3 million to Maine since its inauguration in 2012.
Officials: Augusta gun range may open this month following delays
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

The $2.5 million Summerhaven Gun Range, billed as a state-of-the-art outdoor shooting facility, may open this month following a nearly year-long delay beyond original estimates. The range replaced a gravel pit that was home to an informal shooting area. The range will be open to the public at no cost, but can only be used when “certified range safety officers” are supervising the range. The range is also available for state and local police agencies to use for training. Summerhaven is the second gun range owned by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the other being in Fryeburg.
Editorial: After national order, setting rules for e-bikes is no easy task
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Electric bikes, which looks like traditional bicycles but have a small motor to make pedaling easier, are a relatively new conveyance in the U.S. In the Netherlands, the world’s top bike-owning country, sales of e-bikes have surpassed those of traditional bicycles. This trend should give policymakers pause as they consider how to regulate e-bikes, especially in our country’s most treasured places, our national parks. Accommodating visitors with limited mobility is important, but Acadia National Park managers must focus on protecting the park’s landscape and wildlife while also minimizing conflicts among visitors using different means to enjoy the park.
Opinion: CMP power plan will benefit Maine's people and environment
Village Soup Gazette (Knox County & Penobscot Bay) - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

I always expected, and welcomed, a robust discussion regarding the New England Clean Energy Connect project, a discussion that should be based on facts, not speculation and fear. By all objective analyses, this project will suppress the price of electricity in Maine and across the region, saving Maine residents alone millions of dollars each year in electricity costs. A $50 million Low Income Customer Benefits Fund and an efficiency $140 million fund will further reduce electricity rates for Maine consumers. The number of new acres of forest that would be felled because of this project would equal two tenths of a percent of what we already cut annually. The energy that will be delivered by this project will be low-carbon hydropower from Quebec’s existing system of dams. And it will cost Maine ratepayers nothing. ~ Gov. Janet Mills
Tribes could get more fishing, court and gambling rights in changes to landmark Maine settlement
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

After trying to gain authority over gaming, natural resources and certain crimes through the courts, the State House and the ballot box, Maine’s Native American tribes are trying to reassert their sovereignty by changing law giving the state tribal oversight. A task force examining the state law that led to the federal Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980, which settled a Passamaquoddy claim to 12 million acres of Maine, has drafted a set of proposed changes that would strike language allowing Maine to treat tribes largely like municipalities and adding provisions tribes say would help restore their status as sovereign nations. Doing so would give them more jurisdiction over certain fishing rights, courts and gambling enterprises.
Whitewater rafting on the West Branch of the Penobscot is one of the wildest things I’ve ever done Whitewater rafting on the West Branch of the Penobscot
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Raising our paddles into the air, we tapped the blades together above the center of the raft in a gesture of comradery. We were floating down the West Branch of the Penobscot River, and we were in for a wild ride. Leading our trip, the experienced rafting guides of the New England Outdoor Center were the embodiment of “fired up.” When they weren’t cracking corny jokes, they were bellowing out orders to their crews.
How Maine plans to study the debated practice of aerial herbicide on forests
The County - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

This past spring, Maine Senate President Troy Jackson, D-Allagash, led a bill to ban “aerial herbicide spraying for the purpose of deforestation.” The bill evolved into legislation, signed by Gov. Janet Mills, requiring the Maine Board of Pesticides Control to conduct a report on the practice of using forestry herbicides due out in February 2020. In 2017, more than 12,000 acres of Maine woodlands were treated with herbicides while 22,722 acres of trees were harvested through clear cutting. Forestry industry advocates argue that the practice allows more wood to be grown and harvested on less land.
Opinion: Commentary: Fight Lyme disease by boosting tick-borne illness response funding
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

My life changed dramatically 10 years ago. I was outside doing fall cleanup when I was bitten by a tick. We removed it, flushed it and didn’t give it another thought, not even when I became symptomatic 10 days later. For the next two years, I was misdiagnosed by 23 specialists. I finally found a doctor who saved my life. After treatment tailored to my infections, I went into remission. Ever since, I have been dedicated to helping everyone suffering with this disease. Recently, I was honored to testify on the Ticks: Identify, Control, and Knockout (TICK) Act, which would help establish a national strategy to prevent tick-borne diseases; support federal research to fight ticks; and establish grants to support state health departments’ efforts to improve data collection and analysis, early detection and diagnosis, treatment and public awareness. ~ Paula Jackson Jones, Nobleboro, Midcoast Lyme Disease Support and Education
Opinion: Editorial mischaracterizes panel’s role in resolving CMP complaints
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

To suggest that MPUC staff is biased couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, it was our staff in the Customer Assistance Division who alerted us to problems with CMP meters and bills. It’s also unfortunate that you present the OPA report and MPUC staff report as contradictory. In fact, the reports are complementary. Both conclude that there were an unacceptable number of billing errors that CMP has not addressed adequately and there remain unresolved high-usage complaints that must be addressed. While our regulatory process may frustrate some who want immediate action, we follow a meticulous regulatory path laid out in Maine statutes. We will not rush to judgment. ~ Philip L. Bartlett II, R. Bruce Williamson and Randall D. Davis, PUC commissioners
Letter: Act locally to craft bold solutions to climate change
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

We have 11 years to aggressively cut carbon emissions in order to stave off catastrophic climate change. Profound, urgent action is needed. Like a locomotive is screaming down the tracks at us, urgent. Willful, powerful and corrupt people are watching their pockets fill at any cost, including humanity. We don’t have that luxury. Our children don’t have that luxury. Biodiversity doesn’t have that luxury. We must push for systemic change. We must effect that change. Never has the slogan “To change everything, we need everyone” been more relevant. With the support of Sierra Club Maine, Climate Action Teams have achieved significant change with no budget – just grit, persistence, passion and an acknowledgment that action generates hope. Climate Action Teams are hope. The future you, the one the locomotive is bearing down on, needs you now! ~ Luke Truman, Portland Climate Action Team
Letter: Protect Endangered Species Act
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

When it comes to the success of the Endangered Species Act, one cannot deny its success. Ninety-nine percent of species listed as endangered and threatened survive and many of those recover within their designated timeline. Scientists say more than 227 species would likely have gone extinct without the Endangered Species Act. Protected wild spaces and wildlife are the foundation of a healthy outdoor economy, one that is sustainable, and does not sacrifice people and places for dirty fuels profit. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King must preserve this vital safety net for imperiled species and oppose any effort to weaken or change the Endangered Species Act. ~ Penelope Andrews, Hermon
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