July 23, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Friday, July 21, 2017 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news and events. We have posted summaries and links to 50,000 news articles and announcements. We also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to our attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, Editor
“Bringing Nature Home” in Maine, Jul 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 

Join Maine Audubon’s Director of Education, Eric Topper, to explore the plants, practices and perks involved in restoring native food webs in our gardens, yards and communities. At Portland Public Library, Rines Auditorium, July 26, 5:30 pm.
Little Swan Island Evening Paddle, Jul 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 

Leader: Warren Whitney. At Richmond, July 26, 5:30-7:30 pm. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Exploring the Night Sky, Jul 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, July 18, 2017 

Discover the wonders of the night sky with astronomer Bernie Reim. At Scarborough Marsh, July 25, 8:30-9:30 pm, Maine Audubon members $6, non-members $8.
Recreational Fishing, Jul 24
Announcement - Monday, July 17, 2017 

Hear from experts on what fishing means to Maine's culture and economy, best places to go, ways to get started. Guests: Mac McKeever, LL Bean senior public relations representative; Bonnie Holding, Director of Information and Education, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Maine Public Radio, July 24, 1 pm.
Summer Nature Journaling, Jul 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, July 15, 2017 

Join Master Naturalist Andrea Lani to explore the worlds of wildflowers and insects beginning with an introduction to nature journaling, then heading into the woods and fields to observe, sketch, and write about the bugs and blooms you discover. At Viles Arboretum, Augusta, July 22, 10 am - 2 pm, Arboretum members $35, others $45.

Rainbow Loop Trail Grand Opening, Jul 21-22
Event - Posted - Friday, July 14, 2017 

Celebration in Millinocket, July 21, 5-7 pm. 6-mile hike on the spectacular Rainbow Loop Trail, July 22 at 8:30 am and 9:30 am. Sponsored by The Nature Conservancy.
Native Plant Walk, Jul 20
Event - Posted - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Explore the habitats at Fields Pond with Heather McCargo and learn to recognize some of the wildflowers, ferns, shrubs and trees native to Maine. At Fields Pond, Holden, July 20, 10-11:30 am, Maine Audubon and Wild Seed Project members $7; non-members $10.
Happy Birthday, Henry
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Henry David Thoreau, American poet, author, naturalist, philosopher, abolitionist, and leading Transcendentalist, was born on July 12, 1817 in Concord, Mass.
Help wanted: NRCM Forests and Wildlife Outreach Coordinator
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Works with Natural Resources Council of Maine's Forests and Wildlife Project Director to advance the goals of the Forests and Wildlife Project, and works with the Outreach Team to serve the strategic goals of the organization as a whole. Deadline Aug 7, 2017.
Help wanted: NRCM Clean Energy Policy Advocate & Staff Attorney
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Helps advance Natural Resources Council of Maine initiatives by providing legal, policy and advocacy support primarily for the Climate & Clean Energy Project. Deadline Jul 24, 2017.
Time to override the governor’s solar veto
Action Alert - Monday, July 10, 2017 

We are so close to having a new solar power law. The full Maine House and Senate enacted LD 1504 (with amendments) by overwhelming majorities. However, it was vetoed by the Governor. Tell your legislators—particularly House members—how much solar matters to you and your community. ~ Maine Audubon
The Goslings, July 17
Event - Posted - Monday, July 10, 2017 

Visit The Goslings, one of the best-loved island destinations on Casco Bay. ShoreKeepers, a group of young conservation-minded donors, are hosting a free Open House with hot dogs on the beach to complete the perfect island getaway, July 17, 10 am - 2 pm. Meet at Mere Point Boat Launch, Brunswick, shuttles approximately every 15 minutes. Sponsored by Maine Coast Heritage Trust.
Thwings Point Archaeology Field School, Jul 17-28
Event - Posted - Monday, July 10, 2017 

Lee Cranmer leads an Archaeology Field School, Woolwich, July 17-28. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Hook, Line, and Dinner, Jul 15
Event - Posted - Sunday, July 9, 2017 

Celebrate Maine fishermen and seafood under the tent, on the water, at Cook's Lobster House on Bailey Island, July 15, 6 pm, $55. Sponsored by Maine Coast Fishermen's Association.
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News Items
Head of Maine Aquaculture Association named to federal marine panel
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 14, 2017 

Sebatian Belle, executive director of the aquaculture trade association, has been appointed to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee. As a member of the advisory committee, Belle will advise the Secretary of Commerce and NOAA on issues related to living marine resources that fall under the purview of the Department of Commerce. Belle is a former lobsterman.
South Portland denies pipeline’s tax abatement request
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 14, 2017 

City Assessor Jim Thomas has denied a request from the Portland Pipe Line Corp. for a 42 percent reduction in the $44.7 million assessed value of its real estate and personal property across the city. One of the largest taxpayers in South Portland, the pipeline company sought an abatement on the assessed value of its holdings stretching over 210 acres, from its oil tanker pier at Cushing Point on Casco Bay to a vacant 72-acre wooded parcel off Highland Avenue. While the company provided thousands of documents in response, Thomas ultimately found that it failed to accurately respond to his specific requests and that the documents provided failed to support the requested abatement amounts.
Former Lincoln mill manager will lead early cleanup of hazardous, radioactive waste
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 14, 2017 

The former manager of the bankrupt Lincoln Paper and Tissue mill will lead early cleanup work at the contaminated industrial site under a settlement with federal regulators. A federal bankruptcy judge approved the arrangement Thursday as part of a compromise negotiated between the mill, state and federal environmental regulators and the mill’s creditors. The agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency lays out plans for mill CEO Keith Van Scotter to oversee contractors removing radioactive materials, asbestos and other hazardous waste from the site. The plan calls for the company to complete the initial cleanup within 180 days of approval, at a cost of about $250,000.
Shocking decline in northern Maine angling
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, July 14, 2017 

I was astonished earlier this week to be on a northern Maine lake that once drew lots of anglers, and to see only a handful of anglers in two days. I guess it should not have surprised me, because I recently read Jeremiah Wood’s report about a sharp decline in northern Maine angler use between 1996 and 2016. Wood is a fisheries biologist with Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
Trump says ‘something could happen’ on climate accord
Reuters - Friday, July 14, 2017 

President Donald Trump held the door open to a reversal of his decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord on Thursday, but did not say what he would need in return to persuade him to do so. Trump, who has made few friends in Europe with his rejection of the 2015 Paris agreement and his “America First” trade stance, met with French President Emmanuel Macron as both leaders sought common ground to reset an awkward relationship. “Something could happen with respect to the Paris accords, let’s see what happens,” Trump told a news conference. “If it happens, that will be wonderful, and if it doesn’t, that’ll be OK too.”
Letter: Override solar veto
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 14, 2017 

Last month, the Legislature adopted LD 1504, a solar energy bill, with a bipartisan supermajority, enough to override a veto by Gov. Paul LePage. If the Legislature fails to override the governor’s veto, the PUC’s net metering rule will take effect. Under that rule, everyone in Maine who pays an electric bill will be saddled with unnecessary costs to buy unneeded meter equipment. We cannot afford to let that happen. ~ Katie Yakubowski, Greenville
Blog: My Night on Katahdin (Kids Don’t Try This At Home)
Other - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

The Trek - I finally summited Katahdin 5:17p on June 22nd and officially began my SOBO thru hike. The feelings I had at that moment were impossible to describe. I was sore and tired, but I couldn’t help thinking of the past year leading to this moment. In what seemed like an unfairly short period of time, the sunset became dark, and I stood on a part of the trail that followed the narrow curve of the mountain down, crawling over boulders. I decided the safest course at this point was to slip between a few rocks to avoid the wind and try to get some sleep. ~ James Scott
Maine’s youngest fishermen: Hooked on tradition, challenged to innovate
Forecaster - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Fishing is kept alive, according to many in the next generation of Casco Bay fishermen, through the knowledge, resources and traditions passed down in coastal Maine communities. “You really have to learn a lot on your own, too,” agreed 16-year-old Kaileb Hawkes, whose grandmother operates Hawkes Lobster in Cundy’s Harbor. “But I guess a lot of the people around here are from families that have done it for years.”Hawkes said he feels “pretty supported” in his goal to become a commercial lobsterman. But to keep the dream alive, it’s increasingly apparent, the next generation of fishermen will have to adapt and embrace change.
Zinke reaffirms status of two national monuments
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke on Thursday reaffirmed the status of two of the 27 national monuments under federal review. Zinke, who has not yet said whether he would recommend changing the designation of Maine’s national monument, will advise President Donald Trump to leave untouched Craters of the Moon National Monument & Preserve in Idaho and Hanford Reach National Monument in Washington state. His review is due on Aug. 24.
Column: National monument’s regenerating forest ideal for a birding adventure
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

At long last, I birded the new Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument on Monday. As I drove the loop road, one thing became clear: There are more thrushes along this loop than anywhere else on the planet. Approximately half the veery supply in the world is there. Veeries were calling from every corner. Sixteen miles of veery, uninterrupted. ~ Bob Duchesne
More Atlantic salmon are swimming in Penobscot, Down East rivers
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Since two dams on the lower Penobscot — one in Veazie, and one at Great Works — were removed over the past five years as part of the Penobscot River Restoration Project, access to upstream habitat has increased dramatically. In many spots, fish returning from the sea have been able to swim in places that their ancestors hadn’t had access to for nearly 150 years. As of July 7, a total of 722 Atlantic salmon had been counted at the fish lift, the highest total by that date since 2011. The return is a marked improvement over each of the last five years.
White House budget wouldn’t eliminate deficit or do much to grow economy, CBO says
Washington Post - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

The Congressional Budget Office said Thursday that President Donald Trump’s first budget plan would not eliminate the deficit over 10 years or grow the economy at all by 2021, casting doubt on the administration’s controversial economic assumptions that were supposed to bolster key parts of the White House’s agenda over the next year. CBO projected that the sweeping spending reductions on environmental protection, and a number of other initiatives that the White House wants to cull back still would not be enough to eliminate the deficit by 2027.
US suspends rescue efforts for entangled whales after Canadian fisherman dies
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

U.S. officials are temporarily barring anyone from approaching an entangled whale after a Canadian fisherman was killed trying to free one in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Joe Howlett, a fisherman from Campobello, was struck by a North Atlantic right whale on July 10, moments after he and other responders had freed it from fishing gear near Shippagan, New Brunswick, on the province’s northeast coast. Marine mammals are protected under federal law, which means it is illegal to harass or harm them. Exceptions are made for properly trained people who are pre-approved by NOAA to respond to entanglements or strandings. By suspending entanglement responses, NOAA temporarily is banning anyone from approaching or trying to free an entangled whale.
Poland Spring wants faster rail service for possible Lincoln bottling plant
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

A Poland Spring official says the region’s slow-moving freight train service may hurt its chances to host a $50 million bottling plant. Due to wear and tear, track speeds are limited to about 10 mph on the Lincoln to Waterville track line owned by Pan-Am Railways. That means that trains running from Lincoln to the Pan Am Railways facility the company uses in Waterville — 110 miles by road — would take nine hours to arrive.
Tim Caverly’s new talking book will be donated to veterans homes
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Tim Caverly is a wonderful writer who has self-published seven books about Maine’s north woods. I especially like his books for children. Knowing that veterans enjoy his stories, but many suffer vision problems, he’s transcribing his latest book, The Ranger and the Reporter, to a “talking book.” That project is funded partly by the Royal Arch Masons of Maine, and once the audio books are available, they will be donated to veterans homes throughout the state.
Jerry Brown, Bloomberg announce plan to track climate progress
Bloomberg News - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

California Gov. Jerry Brown announced yet another plan Wednesday to keep the United States on track to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the international Paris climate agreement. This time, he’s teaming up with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to launch “America’s Pledge,” an initiative to compile all of the climate change-fighting commitments of states, cities, businesses and universities in one place where they can be easily tracked and shared.
Earth is on its way to the biggest mass extinction since the dinosaurs, scientists warn
Washington Post - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

A new study published Monday paints a grim picture: The populations of nearly 9,000 vertebrate species, including mammals, such as cheetahs, lions and giraffes, have significantly declined between 1900 and 2015. Almost 200 species have gone extinct in the last 100 years alone. The study says the losses are indicative of the planet’s “ongoing six major extinction events” and has cascading consequences for human life on Earth. Others are skeptical of the doomsday-like findings.
2.7 Million People Want National Monuments to Remain Protected
Center for Biological Diversity - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

As the Trump administration's "review" of 27 national monuments draws to a close, more than 2.7 million people have flooded the government comment website saying that they want national monuments to remain protected.
A Maine nonprofit paid its disabled workers less than minimum wage, while its executives got six figures
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

While Skills Inc., based St. Albans, has paid an employee as little as $2.14 per hour, it quadrupled a former manager’s salary between 2006 and 2013, ultimating paying him $569,844 in 2013. Skills offers residential and day programming in Somerset and Kennebec counties to people with intellectual disabilities, and its largest source of revenue is Medicaid, which is funded with state and federal tax dollars. Skills employs clients at a lumber mill. The former mill manager, Vernon Martin, received an annual bonus of 25 percent of the sawmill’s earnings between 2009 and 2013 instead of returning that revenue to the organization. In 2013, Skills ran almost $500,000 in the red, while Martin collected his largest paycheck yet. In tax year 2011 former CEO Tom Davis started earning an additional bonus of 10 percent of the sawmill’s earnings. Skills sold the sawmill in 2016.
Letter: Trump’s latest environmental nominee unfit for important position
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

President Trump is adding to his list of dirty-energy deputies. Polluter puppet and outspoken climate change denier Kathleen Hartnett White is Trump’s presumptive nominee to lead the Council on Environmental Quality. She has called renewable energy “parasitic.” She doesn’t believe that methane pollution is a problem, and went as far as to write a National Review piece headlined “The GOP platform is right: Coal is clean.” She even denied basic science, saying that carbon pollution is good for the planet. Kathleen Hartnett White has spent her entire career undermining science and trying to prevent action on climate change. ~ Alex Benjamine, Portland
Letter: Writer’s message on caring for environment said it all
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

In the July 8 Portland Press Herald, I read with keen interest the Maine Voices column written by Jake Plante. I sincerely hope you will reprint his last paragraph here for the readers who happened to miss that day’s edition. Mr. Plante states: “The values of caring for the environment are the same as caring for our families, neighbors, communities and the less fortunate. Eventually, stronger environmental protection will prevail out of necessity – we’re all in this together. But at this perilous time, in a culture enthralled with selfies, celebrity worship and individual gain, a healthy environment is about to be sacrificed.” ~ Gunnel Larsdotter, Portland
Letter: Protect Maine’s electric ratepayers by fighting to save L.D. 54
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Phil Coupe is right (“Another View: Cheap hydropower from Canada not so cheap,” July 9). Unless the Legislature overrides Gov. LePage’s veto of L.D. 1504, all ratepayers will be on the hook to implement the new, flawed Public Utilities Commission rule. Make no mistake: This is about protecting the profits of the utility companies and the monied interests of the fossil fuel industry, not about doing what’s best for ratepayers, our environment or energy independence. Let your legislators know that you want them to override the veto of L.D. 1504. ~ Jill Linzee, New Harbor
Letter: Lawmakers should override solar bill veto
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

The Legislature adopted L.D. 1504, a solar energy bill with a bipartisan supermajority, enough to override a veto by Gov. Paul LePage. If the Legislature fails to override the governor’s veto, the PUC’s “net metering rule” will take effect. Under that rule people in Maine will be saddled with millions of dollars in unnecessary costs to buy unneeded metering equipment. We cannot afford to let that happen. ~ Holly Weidner, Vassalboro
On patrol with stewards of Acadia National Park’s stone cairns and summits
Acadia On My Mind Blog - Tuesday, July 11, 2017 

An army of volunteer keepers of Acadia’s stone cairns known as Waldron’s Warriors, patrol the park’s ridges, summmits and trails, along with Friends of Acadia-supported Summit Stewards. Tim Henderson is in his third season as a Waldron’s Warrior, named after Waldron Bates, the pathmaker who first came up with the distinctive trail markers known as Bates cairns in the early 1900s. The cairns are like mini-architectural wonders, positioned just so, with 2 columns of 2 to 4 base stones, a lintel stone across the top, and a pointer stone indicating the direction of the trail.
Hike: Devil’s Back in Harpswell
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, July 11, 2017 

Named after the ridge that runs down the center of the island’s narrow northern tip, Devil’s Back Trail Area is comprised of two loop trails, one on each side of Route 24, which runs down the “spine” of Devil’s Back. Owned and managed by the Town of Harpswell, the west side of the trail network opened in 2012, and the east side opened in 2016. Already, it has become a popular place for local residents and summer visitors to enjoy the island’s mossy old forest and rugged coastline.
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Art and Land Conservation Symposium
at Colby College, August 3-4

Frederic E. Church, 
Mount Katahdin from Millinocket Camp, 1895, 
Portland Museum of Art

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