October 21, 2014  

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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news stories and events. I have posted links to more than 34,000 news articles and announcements. I 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 my attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. Will Sugg is the website developer. ~ Jym St. Pierre, RESTORE: The North Woods
Election Results and Maine’s Environment, Nov 6 & 13
Event - Posted - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Join the Natural Resources Council of Maine for an evening discussion about the November elections and what they may mean for the future of Maine’s environment. At Maine Historical Society, Portland, Nov 6, and Frontier Café, Brunswick, Nov 13, 5:30 pm. RSVP.
Loon talk, Oct 28
Event - Posted - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Wildlife biologist Danielle D’Auria will talk about loons. At Harmony Hall, Hampden, Oct 28, 7 pm.
Communicating about Climate Impacts, Oct 28-29
Event - Posted - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Need help developing effective climate messages for your audiences? Struggling to reach and motivate stakeholders to engage in outreach events? Climate and environmental communications expert Cara Pike will lead a two-day workshop aimed at helping you develop effective framing and public engagement strategies in support of climate action and sustainability goals. At Wells Reserve, Oct 28-29, $65.
Threatened and Endangered: Flora and Fauna of Maine: Artist's Books
Event - Posted - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Book artist Rebecca Goodale will present an illustrated talk about her multi-year project to create artist's books documenting all of the plants and animals on Maine's "Threatened and Endangered Species" lists. At Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Visual Arts Center, Kresge Auditorium, Oct 28, 7 pm. The talk will also be live streamed.
Gray Fox, Oct 28
Event - Posted - Tuesday, October 21, 2014 

Wildlife Biologist Sean Moriarty will talk about the Gray Fox, a critter quite different from the Red Fox in their stout, more powerful build, unique coloration, and their ability to climb trees. At Topsham Public Library, Oct 28, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Help wanted: Executive Director, Maine Initiatives
Announcement - Monday, October 20, 2014 

The next executive director of Maine Initiatives has the unique opportunity to live and work in Maine, leading an established, well-respected community-based progressive public foundation to create long term social, economic, and environmental justice in Maine communities.
Coyote and the Boy, Ben, Oct 26
Event - Posted - Sunday, October 19, 2014 

Songdog Puppeteers presents a puppet show with handmade marionettes. This is a story of a mother Coyote searching for her little pup, who has run off to play with a butterfly, and a boy named Ben who has found himself in the forest after joyfully following a bunny. Suitable for children of all ages. At University of New England, Portland, Oct 26, 1-2 pm.
Birding at Hermit Island, Oct 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, October 18, 2014 

Walk along Head Beach, by ocean overlooks, and along a wooded dirt road by a saltwater cove. Expect to see ducks, grebes, loons, as well as some woodland birds. At Hermit Island, Phippsburg, Oct 25, 8 am -12 pm. Sponsored by Merrymeeting Audubon.
Wind Over Wings, Oct 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, October 18, 2014 

Meet Wind Over Wings founder Hope Douglas, Bald Eagle Lady Grace, her namesake, 92-year old Grace Rowe, and the diverse support team who have all come together to rescue and care for this injured eagle. Featured also will be the Golden Eagle “Sky,” and two smaller live owls, the Eastern Screech and tiny Saw-whet. At Topsham Public Library, Oct 25, 2 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
All Abilities Excursion up Mount Pisgah, Oct 25
Event - Posted - Saturday, October 18, 2014 

The forested summit of Mount Pisgah in Winthrop features a former Maine Forest Service fire tower, which provides spectacular 360 degree views of the surrounding 800-acre Mount Pisgah Conservation Area. Hike up with local conservation stewards; rides to the top will be available for those who are unable to hike. October 25, 2-4 pm. Sponsored by Kennebec Land Trust.
The Better Together Summit, Oct 24-26
Event - Posted - Friday, October 17, 2014 

A summit to bring together those who work for environmental literacy, science education, land conservation, community food security, outdoor recreation, environmental justice, and resilient communities. At Pineland Farms, New Gloucester, Oct 24-26. Sponsored by New England Environmental Education Alliance and Maine Environmental Education Association.
Foresters for Maine Birds, Oct 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, October 16, 2014 

A program that provides foresters with tools for effectively communicating with landowners about the benefits of managing forests with bird habitat in mind. At Wiley Woodlot, Dresden, Oct 24, 8:30 am - 12:30 pm. Pre-register. Sponsored by Forest Guild and Maine Audubon.
Return of the River, Oct 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, October 16, 2014 

This film is a vivid portrayal of the epic story of the freeing of Olympic National Park's mighty Elwha River from two salmon-blocking dams. Speaker: Landis Hudson of Maine Rivers. At First Parish UU Church, Kennebunk, Oct 24, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Maine Sierra Club.
Hunting & fishing stories, Oct 24
Event - Posted - Thursday, October 16, 2014 

As host of ESPN’s New American Sportsman, Registered Maine Guide Tom Ackerman has traveled the world with some of the biggest newsmakers of the day. Join him for an evening of inspirational hunting & fishing stories. At L.L. Bean, Freeport, Oct 24, 7 pm.
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Jym St. Pierre, RESTORE: The North Woods, Editor, Maine Environmental News.
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News Items
New economic study sheds light on potential impact of bear referendum
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Total spending by bear hunters in Maine totaled nearly $53 million last year, according to a new economic study prepared for the Maine Office of Tourism and Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The study is especially relevant in light of an upcoming referendum that, if passed, would limit the methods used to hunt black bear in Maine. “Just like the opponents use of scare tactics about the risk of bear attacks, they are inflating the economic value of their program built around setting up garbage dumps for bears in the Maine woods,” said Katie Hansberry, campaign director of Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting.
Maine gubernatorial candidates go on the offensive in first televised debate
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The three candidates for governor got their chance to go on the offensive Wednesday evening during a freewheeling debate in Augusta. Eliot Cutler (I) criticized Republican Gov. Paul LePage for a deal his administration made with Cate Street Capital, an investment firm that received several state loan guarantees in an effort to prevent the Millinocket region’s Great Northern Paper mill from closing for good. Despite those loan guarantees, the mill closed, hundreds of workers were laid off and the mill declared bankruptcy. Cutler called the deal “corporate welfare,” but LePage said he’d do it again. That didn’t sit well with the independent candidate, who said he had spent a lot of time in Millinocket. “I can’t find anyone there who thinks it’s a good deal,” Cutler said.
Iceland-Maine team starting new firm on Portland waterfront
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

An entrepreneur from Iceland and a local Maine company are establishing a business on the Portland waterfront to help companies develop products related to the ocean. Thor Sigfusson and Soli DG Inc., which has a state contract to manage the International Marine Terminal in Portland, plan to replicate a successful business incubator in Iceland that is working with 35 companies located in the same building in Reykjavik, the capital. The business, called the Iceland Ocean Cluster, has created five new companies since 2013.
Warren waste removal to begin in April, but no manufacturing jobs to be created locally
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The removal of a mountain of fiber wastes that has plagued the town for more than 15 years will begin in April, but the promise of local manufacturing jobs to turn the material into composite lumber has been dropped. Triumvirate Environmental Inc. of Somerville, Massachusetts, signed a contract Wednesday with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection for the removal of 27,000 tons of fiber materials, according to Warren Town Manager Elaine Clark. But Clark said initial plans to have Triumvirate build a manufacturing facility at the site off Route 90 in Warren to produce composite lumber out of the wastes was dropped because of the cost and timing required to extend three-phase power to the lot.
DIF&W commissioner defends bear baiting, opposes ban during seminar
Piscataquis Observer - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Commissioner Chandler Woodcock told listeners at a recent seminar that bear baiting is necessary for effective bear population management. The informational seminar on Oct. 4 was sponsored by the Piscataquis County Republican Committee. When Maine voters head to the polls Nov. 4, they will encounter Question 1 on the ballot, which reads as follows: “Do you want to ban the use of bait, dogs or traps in bear hunting except to protect property, public safety, or for research?” That question has sparked much debate. “The impact of this to the state of Maine’s economy is $53 million dollars,” Woodcock said about studies projecting what would happen if Question 1 passes.
Environment Maine Endorses Candidates for 2014 Elections
Other - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Environment Maine today announced the endorsement of Chellie Pingree and Emily Cain for Congress and 24 candidates for the Maine Legislature. Environment Maine previously endorsed Mike Michaud for governor.
Nova Scotia commits another $5 million to Nova Star ferry service as LePage promises aid bill
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The province of Nova Scotia has agreed to give operators of the Nova Star ferry service another $5 million (Canadian dollars). Meanwhile, Gov. Paul LePage will introduce legislation to provide the company a $5 million line of credit. Michel Samson, Nova Scotia’s minister of economic and rural development and tourism, said Tuesday that a $21 million subsidy approved by the province’s previous government was not enough to cover outstanding costs for the service’s maiden season.
Column: Tiniest Killer
Free Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Biologists are still vague about the exact definition of a virus. It is a very small form of life, but, unlike plants and animals, it does not have the ability to reproduce itself. Instead, a virus has to break into the cell of a host animal or plant to gain the necessary chemicals to duplicate its genetic material. These organisms are thought to be the most prevalent form of life on Earth. Each milliliter of ocean water contains about 10 million virus particles. How Ebola kills its human host is a curious, if horrible, story. The virus doesn't kill us; our immune system does. No such vaccine exists for Ebola at the moment. The reality of this outbreak and previous eruptions of SARS, swine flu, and the 1918 influenza epidemic is that the smallest of life forms can so easily kill one of the more complex. ~ Melissa Waterman
Interactive map: record heat across interior Maine
Associated Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The National Weather Service says the temperature climbed to 74 degrees on Tuesday in Caribou, breaking the old record for the date of 71 degrees, set back in 1956. The entire state had temperatures in the upper 60s and lower 70s on Tuesday. The 74-degree reading in Caribou was more than 20 degrees above the normal high for October.
Opinion: How a Republican sweep this November could attract business to Maine
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Without a doubt, both parties seek to create prosperity and assist the poor. Government programs, however, do not create prosperity. The only way to create prosperity for all Mainers is through providing an attractive business climate that enables the economic pie to expand exponentially benefitting all as so many other states have shown. There is absolutely no reason why our incredibly desirable state cannot be an economic leader. LePage, Poliquin and Maine Republicans understand how to accomplish this. ~ Peter Anastos, Maine Course Hospitality Group
Study says odds are sea level to rise 3 feet by 2100
Summit Voice - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Developing accurate projections for sea level rise has been an elusive, high-priority goal for climate scientists. It's certain that sea level will keep rising for centuries to come. But it's not clear at what rate and pace that will happen, especially during the next few decades as coastal communities try to prepare. In the latest number-crunching, scientists with the Niels Bohr Institute established that there's little chance sea level will rise more than 1.8 meters (about 6 feet) by 2100.
Rail trail progress happening fast this fall in Belfast
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The long-planned Rail Trail along the Passagassawakeag River in Belfast is a lot closer to reality, after a company hired by the city has made big progress in pulling up two miles’ worth of railroad tracks and rails. City Manager Joe Slocum said that all the tracks and rails are expected to be pulled up by the end of this week, adding that this portion of the project has been a big bargain for Belfast. The company is pulling up the tracks and the old wooden rails in exchange for the value of the metal and a payment of just $500 from the city, which also is “moving swiftly” to build a deck over the railroad trestle bridge located close to City Point, he said.
State officials receive threats for involvement in bear debate, police investigating
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Threats mailed to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife last week have prompted the department to protect certain employees with armed game wardens while state police investigate the “troubling correspondence.” Since then, the department’s wildlife division director Judy Camuso has backed out of two scheduled public appearances — a public debate in Bath last Wednesday and a public presentation in Norway. Both events centered on the upcoming referendum to ban the use of bait, hounds and traps in bear hunting in Maine. Camuso is now being protected around the clock.
Maine's Conservation Districts Highlighted
Maine Government News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry officials are highlighting the important work of Maine Soil and Water Conservation Districts in speeches in Skowhegan and Gorham this week. Commissioner Walt Whitcomb and Deputy Commissioner Dave Lavway are scheduled to speak at meetings of the Maine State Grange and Cumberland County Soil & Water Conservation District about the value of Conservation districts to Maine communities, agriculture and the natural resource economy.
Land trust aims to finish funding campaign
Forecaster - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust is seeking new supporters to carry it through the final stage of a $7 million conservation effort. Since 2011, the trust has secured more than $6 million in donations and grants, according to Executive Director Angela Twitchell, and is now focusing on expanding its membership and building a stewardship fund to care for conserved properties. The trust aims to protect 23 priority preservation properties totaling an estimated 1,100 acres, establish an $800,000 stewardship fund, raise membership from 900 to 1,500, and double annual membership income to $205,000. It has been able to conserve 680 acres across 11 properties, and expects to close on an additional 12 projects totaling 480 acres in the next two years.
Non-resident hunter says he hopes Maine’s bear season continues
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Non-resident hunters like John Home of Beaumont, Texas, have injected their own hard-earned money into our local economy year after year while pursuing our state’s black bears. Home said he thought funding the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, tasking its biologists with managing wildlife, then seeking to ignore the conclusions of that agency makes no sense.
Opinion: Taxpayers have subsidized companies’ success. Where’s the return?
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

On Oct. 1, the company that runs the mill where I work, Verso Paper, announced it would permanently close most of the Bucksport mill on Dec. 1. The company closed this mill because it was unprofitable in spite of years of mill workers doing all they could to make this company successful and in spite of the state and the town giving all they could in the form of tax breaks. This company took all it could and promised that these tax breaks would secure jobs and the mill’s future. Yet four years later, Verso is shutting down most of its operation without even listening to the workers and letting us work with them to keep it running or maybe letting us search for a buyer. It’s just plain wrong that companies can take from us and not be held accountable. ~ Emery Deabay, Bucksport
Maine PUC recommends $150,000 fine against Summit Natural Gas
Kennebec Journal - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Maine energy regulators are recommending a $150,000 fine against Summit Natural Gas of Maine after an investigation found the company damaged sewer lines in 25 places in Augusta, Gardiner, Yarmouth and Cumberland.
Issues in Maine governor’s race: Energy
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Mainers live in a cold climate and are burdened by above-average rates for heat and electricity. So the choices that the next governor makes about energy policy will affect everyone who pays to keep the lights on and the house warm. One course, generally favored by Democrats, including U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, would revive Maine’s push for energy from wind, solar, biomass and local resources, and put a greater emphasis on conservation and efficiency. Another path, championed by Republicans and Gov. Paul LePage, would maintain support for natural gas expansion and a preference for energy alternatives with a faster payback — namely heat pumps — rather than wind or solar. Forging somewhat of a middle path, Eliot Cutler, the independent candidate, favors natural gas as a shorter-term “bridge” fuel, while making investments in a clean-energy, high-efficiency future.
Time we live in called the age of humans
Associated Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Though most non-experts don’t realize it, science calls the past 12,000 years the Holocene, Greek for “entirely recent.” But the way humans and their industries are altering the planet, especially its climate, has caused an increasing number of scientists to use the word Anthropocene to better describe when and where we are.
Blog: Maine fisherman on ‘Deadliest Catch’
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

Jonathan McDaniel of Gorham, a longtime fisherman with experience fishing crab in Alaska and lobster the Gulf of Maine, is working under Capt. Jonathan Hillstrand on the vessel Time Bandit. He will appear on the show ‘Deadliest Catch,’ the long-running Discovery Channel television show about crab fishing boats in Alaska.
Opinion: Cutler’s not the candidate of choice for those out to oust LePage
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

There is only one issue in this campaign, and his name is Paul LePage. What’s up for a vote is the relentless anti-government ideology that has guided his decision-making for 3½ years. It’s a philosophy that says government can’t play a positive role in people’s lives, and he works to undermine the government and prove his point. Faced with crumbling infrastructure, he refuses to issue bonds. Budget shortfalls lead to tax cuts, environmental regulation is run by industry lobbyists, and a minimum-wage hike, solar power incentives and family planning services for low-income women are all occasions for vetoes. Voters can say that they don’t like the choice between the two leading candidates, but they can’t say that there is no choice, because there is. It’s just not the one Eliot Cutler would have wanted. ~ Greg Kesich
Letter: Let Cutler try after LePage failed with paper mill
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

The Great Northern Paper mill was the hope for the entire Katahdin region, but a smart leader would have realized the problems in a deal with Cate Street Capital to finance the mill’s operations. Gov. LePage has proven incapable of managing our state’s tax dollars. Sixteen million dollars could have retrained thousands of workers in the Katahdin region who need skills for 21st-century jobs. Sixteen millon dollars could have financed tuition for hundreds of Maine students who otherwise could not afford a college education. Independent Eliot Cutler is by far the most qualified to take Maine forward in the future. Let’s not throw good money after bad! ~ Bill Betz, Cape Elizabeth
Letter: Yes on Question 1
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

I was disappointed that the Oct. 3 BDN editorial, “Maine biologists can influence bear vote — with facts, not state resources” failed to include those facts supporting a ban. Maine’s black bear population has increased by 30 percent since the last effort to ban feeding (baiting) bears in 2004, thanks to the millions pounds of junk food being dumped in the Maine woods every year. There was no mention of the fact that baiting bears increases the productivity of females, and improves the survival rate of the cubs. The officials at the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife are essentially sanctioning cruelty in hunting, and have offered no solutions. ~ Gina Stoll, Portland
Letter: Clean power now
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014 

John Bernard’s great column, “We need limits on carbon pollution from power plants — strong ones — for our kids,” reminded grandparents, parents and all people that the EPA’s Clean Power Plan regulations need public support, and are just a first step in the right direction. My grandson lives in Bangor. I spend most of my time volunteering for Citizens’ Climate Lobby because, although the EPA is doing good work on climate change, congressional legislation could be much more effective at lowering emissions quickly, cheaply and equitably. Voters must vote for congressional candidates who acknowledge climate change’s urgency, and promise to enact climate change legislation. ~ Judy Weiss, Brookline, Mass.
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Monhegan seeks sustainabilty

Late Afternoon by Rockwell Kent

News Feeds

Maine Organic Farmers
and Gardeners Assn

Regulate Synthetic Biology Now: 194 Countries
In a unanimous decision of 194 countries, the United Nation's Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) today formally urged nation states to regulate synthetic biology (SynBio), a new extreme form of genetic engineering.
10/19/2014 11:00:00 PM

Fish tale: New study evaluates antibiotic content in farm-raised fish
Submtted by Arizona State University - In a new study, Hansa Done, PhD candidate, and Rolf Halden, PhD, researchers at Arizona State University's Biodesign Institute, examine antibiotic use in the rapidly expanding world of global aquaculture.
10/19/2014 11:00:00 PM

Author Mary Quinn Doyle documents the changes in Maine's farms and their economic importance
By Lori Valigra - Walking amid the Holstein cows at Benson Farm in Gorham, writer and photographer Mary Quinn Doyle seems at home, petting a calf while scoping out the dairy and composting operations. And it's no wonder. The former English and social studies teacher just published "Unique Maine Farms," a book in which she profiles 178 Maine farms, highlighting their diversity and specialties.
10/19/2014 11:00:00 PM

World Trade Organization Rules Against Popular U.S. Country-of-Origin Meat Labels
By Angela Bradbery, Public Citizen - Today’s ruling by a World Trade Organization (WTO) compliance panel against U.S. country-of-origin meat labeling (COOL) policies sets up a no-win dynamic, and the Obama administration should appeal the ruling.
10/19/2014 11:00:00 PM

Maine Gardener: Plastics in the garden? It depends
By Tom Atwell - Plastic is often seen as evil. It is derived from petroleum, and it does not decompose. Ever since Benjamin Braddock, played by Dustin Hoffman in “The Graduate,” was advised that the key to his career was plastics, it has symbolized everything phony. But plastic has a place in the garden, even organic gardens. It’s a question of balance – whether using the material does more good than harm.
10/18/2014 11:00:00 PM

Boulder's bee-safe boosters targeting businesses for no 'neonics' pledge
By Sam Klomhaus - First Melody-Catalpa, now all of Boulder County. Bee Safe Boulder, the group behind the first bee-safe neighborhood in the state, is at it again.
10/17/2014 11:00:00 PM

Humble spud poised to launch a world food revolution
By Tracy McVeigh - In a small army field-hut Dr Arjen de Vos shows off his irrigation machine with pride. Pipes lead out to several acres of muddy field, where only a few stragglers from the autumn harvest of potatoes, salads, carrots and onions are left. The tubes are lined with copper to stop corrosion because – in a move that defies everything we think we know about farming – de Vos is watering his plants with diluted sea water.
10/17/2014 11:00:00 PM

Women are the Past, Present and Future of American Agriculture
By Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden - From historic homesteaders to contemporary cattle ranchers, women have been the cornerstone of America’s agriculture heritage. We’ve produced food to feed our families, feed our neighbors and to feed the world.
10/16/2014 11:00:00 PM

Natural Resources Council
of Maine

Yes on Question 6: A Vote for Safe Water, Modern Infrastructure, Flood Preparedness
Bangor Daily News editorial Do you favor a $10,000,000 bond issue to ensure clean water and safe communities a...
10/21/2014 12:40:27 PM

Line Dry Laundry
Fall may be here, but line-drying your laundry is still a great way to save money and reduce pollution. To vie...
10/21/2014 4:00:28 AM

Godfrey Honored for LNG Fight
Natural Resources Council of Maine gives Bob Godfrey its People’s Choice award by Leslie Bowman Working ...
10/20/2014 2:17:13 PM

My Maine This Week: Betty Hartley
“I took these photos on a recent trip to Lincoln to visit my college roommate. I arrived just in time to...
10/20/2014 12:24:22 PM

Thursday, October 30: PechaKucha Portland
Have you wanted to see the new National Park and National Recreation Area proposed next to Baxter State Park, ...
10/20/2014 11:08:39 AM

New Life to Old Sweaters
Does that old sweater have sentimental values? Unravel the yarn and use it to knit new hat or scarf. Or remove...
10/20/2014 4:00:32 AM

Thursday, November 6: Election Results and Maine’s Environment, Portland
Please join NRCM for an evening discussion about the November elections and what they may mean for the future ...
10/19/2014 11:14:15 AM

Furnace Upgrade
If your heating system is more than 15 years old it might be worth investing in a new one. To view more tips, ...
10/19/2014 4:00:10 AM

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