April 24, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Monday, April 24, 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
Maine Mushrooms, May 1
Event - Posted - Monday, April 24, 2017 

Presenter: Alan Seamans. At USM, Lewiston, May 1, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Stanton Bird Club.
Lyme disease conference, Apr 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 22, 2017 

At Wiscasset Community Center, April 29, 8 am - 5 pm.
Beginning Farmers Workshops
Event - Posted - Friday, April 21, 2017 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District are co-sponsoring a series of Beginning Farmers Workshops.
• April 23: Free Shearing and Wool Grading, 8 am-5 pm (two sessions), presented by the Midcoast Farmers Alliance. Hosted by Meadowcroft Farm in Washington.
• May 13: Free Natural Farming Practices, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, presented by Aaron Englander at Erickson Fields Preserve in Rockport.
• June 14: Cover Crops and Crop Rotation on June 14;
• July 8: Day-long Pasture Workshop in conjunction with Beef Basics at Aldermere Farm.
• July 26: Pollination Services and Community Partnership.
People’s Climate Movement, Apr 29
Action Alert - Thursday, April 20, 2017 

Join the People’s Climate Movement this April 29th in Washington, D.C. ~ 350.org
Resist: Skills to Fight Back for Maine's Environment, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 20, 2017 

Learn about the current threats and our efforts to protect our public lands, defend the Clean Air Act, and preserve the EPA's budget, and the skills to make a difference. At Bangor High School, April 27, 6 pm.
Boating the Bold Coast, Apr 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, April 19, 2017 

A community dialogue around resources, opportunities, challenges and concerns co-hosted by Maine Island Trail Association and Downeast Conservation Network. At Cobscook Community Learning Center, Trescott, April 26, 3-5 pm.
Inspired by Nature: Kris Sader, Apr 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 18, 2017 

Kris Sader, a visual artist, will show how nature inspires her creative work. At Topsham Library, April 25, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Resist: Skills to Fight Back for Maine's Environment, Apr 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 18, 2017 

Learn about the current threats and our efforts to protect our public lands, defend the Clean Air Act, and preserve the EPA's budget and the skills to make a difference. At Maple Hill Farm Inn and Conference Center, Hallowell, April 25, 6:30 pm.
The Psychology of Climate Change, Apr 23
Event - Posted - Sunday, April 16, 2017 

Kati Corlew, PhD, an assistant professor of psychology with the Social Science Program at UMA-Bangor, will talk about Tuvalu, a group of low-lying islands in the Pacific Ocean that is under extreme threat from rising sea levels. At Unitarian Universalist Church, Bangor, April 23, 11:30 am - 1 pm.
Seven Earth Day Events in Southern Maine
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 15, 2017 

Here are seven Earth Day events happening in southern Maine throughout the weekend.
March for Science, Portland Maine, Apr 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 15, 2017 

The March will start at City Hall Plaza around 10 am, will head down Congress St, ending at Congress Square Park with a few speakers.
Sheep wanted
Announcement - Thursday, April 13, 2017 

Viles Arboretum in Augusta is seeking sheep to graze a couple of fields. There might even be a stipend to a farmer willing to work with the Arboretum on the project. Call 207-626-7989.
Close Look at Wetlands Ecology, Apr 20
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 13, 2017 

Dave Marceau will lead the walk, describing the varieties of wetlands, their role in the environment, and how humans influence their functions. At Riverview Hayfields Preserve, South Thomaston, April 20, 3 pm. Sponsored by Georges River Land Trust.
National Park Week, Apr 15-23
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 8, 2017 

This year, from April 15–23, celebrate all that America’s more than 400 national park areas have to offer. April 15–16 and April 22–23 are free admission days. The National Park Foundation’s free Owner’s Guide series is packed with ideas to help you plan your next national park adventure.
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News Items
DIFW testimony on brook trout bill was embarrassing and inaccurate
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

The testimony of Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife on my bill to add new protections to our Heritage native brook trout waters was embarrassing, inaccurate, and very disappointing. The bill would prohibit stocking fish in or using live fish as bait in tributaries to State Heritage Fish Waters where our native brook trout and arctic char are recognized and protected. Francis Brautigam, DIF&W’s Fisheries Division Director, delivered the agency’s testimony in opposition to the bill.
Change To President Trump's Trust Lets Him Tap Business Profits
National Public Radio - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

A newly released document opens new holes in the ethics wall between the president and that wealth. Essentially, the president can take money from his businesses whenever he wants. Kathleen Clark, a professor of law and ethics at Washington University in St Louis, said, "It's a public relations ploy to give people the impression that Trump has done something meaningful about the massive conflicts of interest he faces." Those conflicts center mainly around his hotels and brands overseas, U.S. environmental laws that affect his golf courses, and his Washington, D.C., hotel.
Opinion: Maine Voices: A shared vision of energy policy points to an ‘electric future’ that benefits all
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

Let's think strategically about Maine’s solar energy policy. Our electricity would be economical, with stable, predictable costs, potentially declining over time. Maine would have control over the primary cost factors. Power production and distribution would be secure, reliable, clean and local. It would no longer produce pollutants causing health problems, and greenhouse gas emissions endangering life on the planet. It would create good jobs for Maine people The whole system would be sustainable, resilient to shocks, a boon to our economy, accessible to everyone, benefiting all of us. As the world moves toward an “electric future,” a clean, locally controlled electric system, based on free fuel and providing thousands of really good jobs, is worth supporting. ~ Steve Weems, Fortunat Mueller (ReVision Energy), Jay Kilbourn (Kennebunk Light & Power), Todd Griset (Preti Flaherty), Solar Energy Association of Maine
Letter: Solar and wind are lacking as reliable power sources
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

In our society, we use electricity 24 hours every day, and solar and wind power do not provide this. Solar power needs the sun to make electricity, and when Mainers need power the most is in the winter. Guess when the shortest days of sunlight are? The winter. Do you want to have your life depend on wind-powered electricity, to be used in the hospital during your major operation or every day during the coldest days of winter? Under the current system, the power companies have backups so the people have their electricity 24/7, 365 days a year. ~ Gregory Morrow, Windham
Letter: Foragers don’t need regulations
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

Spring is near and soon the wild fruits and vegetables will be growing and ready for harvest — fiddleheads, strawberries, raspberries, apples and more. Picking these has been an accepted practice for many years. But wait, here comes Augusta closing in for further investigation on how this should be regulated. When are they going to stop this type of lawmaking and get to work doing something useful. ~ Robert Beaulieu, Mapleton
Letter: ‘Climate change’ banned
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 4, 2017 

Workers at the Energy Department have been told not to use the words “climate change.” Even the odious Richard Nixon did not try to ban words he disliked; his enemies list was for people, not words. Later this month, scientists will march on Washington. Then the word “science” may be banned. ~ Peg Cruikshank, Corea
Ten states, including Maine, challenge Trump over energy rules
Bloomberg News - Monday, April 3, 2017 

Ten states, including Maine, and a handful of national environmental groups have sued the Trump administration, claiming it’s violating federal law by delaying energy-efficiency standards intended to save Americans almost $24 billion. Six rules for ceiling fans, walk-in coolers and other consumer products that are being blocked by President Trump have been projected to slash emissions of carbon dioxide by 292 million tons. The rules created under former President Barack Obama’s administration were to go into effect on March 20, but they were delayed until Sept. 30 without explanation.
King wants rural towns to compete for money to turn around their future
Bangor Daily News - Monday, April 3, 2017 

Sen. Angus King is proposing two competitive grant funds aimed specifically at rural and economically distressed areas to spur regions in need of an economic boost to generate revitalization plans, then act on them. King made the announcement Monday in western Maine. He said he’s circulating the idea now to solicit feedback, with the intention of formally proposing legislation in the coming weeks. If current trends hold, Maine’s rural regions are destined for a future in which communities will continue to shrink, and some might cease to exist as municipalities.
Climate change skeptic group’s mailing campaign targets Maine teachers
Bangor Daily News - Monday, April 3, 2017 

Last week, thousands of science teachers across the nation, including several in Maine, got a special delivery from an organization trying to convince them that scientists are split on the science of global climate change. “It’s a pathetic attempt at trying to sway some people’s minds,” Paul Mayewski, director of the University of Maine’s Climate Change Institute, said during a phone interview Monday. “There’s a tremendous amount of misinformation.” The mail, which includes a book and DVD, came from the Heartland Institute, a libertarian think tank that wades into debates ranging from education reform and health care to hydrofracking and, most notably of late, climate change.
Better protection for native brook trout gets lots of support at legislature
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, April 3, 2017 

I was really pleased by the testimony and support of my bill to expand protection of our native brook trout in Maine’s Heritage waters. But the opposition of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife was extremely disappointing. The bill would prohibit stocking fish in or using live fish as bait in tributaries to State Heritage Fish Waters where our native brook trout and arctic char are recognized and protected.
Trump donates first 3 months of salary to Park Service
Maine Environmental News - Monday, April 3, 2017 

President Trump is donating the first three months of his salary, $78,333.32, to the National Park Service. The billionaire businessman turned president had promised to forgo his presidential salary. He can write off such donations, potentially lowering his income taxes. Meanwhile, he has proposed cutting $1,500,000,000 from the Interior Department’s budget.
Offshore Wind Farms See Promise in Platforms That Float
New York Times - Thursday, September 29, 2016 

The University of Maine is undertaking an elaborate physics experiment meant to simulate conditions that full-scale floating wind turbines could face at an installation being planned about 10 miles off the Maine coast in up to 360 feet of water near tiny Monhegan Island. For nearly 18 months in 2013 and 2014, an operating version of the apparatus — one-eighth of scale — sat in the waters off Castine sending electricity to the grid. That proved the technology fundamentally worked and guided refinements to the design. Now, the UMaine team is using the data collected at the lab to confirm the final form, a crucial next step in bringing the technology to market.
Blog: Singing is an act of territorialism for birds
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, April 7, 2016 

Birds don’t think about much, mostly just food and sex. Despite the simplicity of such a life, bird communication can be quite complex. Birds are renowned for their vocal abilities, but they use lots of visual cues, too. Perhaps nothing is more obvious than the crests sported by many species.
Marco Rubio Finds Common Ground With Armed Militia In Oregon
Climate Progress - Thursday, January 7, 2016 

Republican presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R) doesn’t like that militants are currently occupying a federal wildlife facility in Oregon. But he does like the militia’s main idea: Seizing and selling off America’s public lands. Rubio explained his position on the controversial occupation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, now entering its fifth day. Rubio said that while he doesn’t support “lawless” activity, he does agree with the militia on its main point that federal public lands should be transferred to private ownership for activities like logging, coal mining, oil drilling, and farming. Rubio’s plan would essentially cause a free-for-all, where states can devastate national forests, parks, and other important wildlife and plantlife zones for temporary economic gain.
Editorial: Conflict over land preservation confirms where the public stands
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, December 16, 2015 

If Gov. Paul LePage’s yearslong barricade of Land for Maine’s Future has proven anything, it’s how popular the conservation program is among a broad cross-section of the state. When the governor held hostage the voter-approved bonds that fund the program, residents from across the political divide responded with one voice, united in their support for an initiative that has protected more than 550,000 acres for a variety of economic and recreational uses. That response should make it clear that the focus should be on strengthening and tightening the program, not obstructing or trying to dismantle it, as LePage has done for most of his time in office. The governor, not corruption or mismanagement, is the program’s true problem.
Opinion: This is Bar Harbor’s chance to become a solar success and example
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, May 19, 2015 

On June 2, Bar Harbor voters have an exciting opportunity to take a step toward putting the brakes on climate change. Article T on the town meeting agenda authorizes leasing town land and roofs as part of Community Solar Farms and Power Purchase Agreements for the purpose of providing power to the municipality. The change starts here and now. With our prominence as a popular tourist destination, Bar Harbor has an outsize influence on the rest of the state and the nation. By voting for this article we are saying that we care, that we can make a collective difference. ~ Gary Friedmann, Bar Harbor Town Council
Opinion: A new set of bold predictions
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 4, 2015 

In 2015, LePage will reduce the size of state government by 5 percent, he will succeed in further reducing municipal revenue sharing and he will change state law to permit municipalities to tax nonprofits. The Legislature will pass major welfare reform and reduce energy costs by welcoming in more natural gas and hydro. ~ Phil Harriman
Letter: Give deer the food they need and they will flourish
Kennebec Journal - Monday, April 28, 2014 

I read with interest the April 13 article about whitetail deer, “In northern Maine, deer herd shrinks despite efforts to rebuild it.” Anyone can look at Google satellite maps and know that very little of the Maine woods is untouched. The deer are being squeezed out of their natural habitat searching for food. They are vulnerable to predators and starvation because of the condition of the forest. The state cannot save the deer herd by pumping money into various programs. We just need to let some of the forest grow back, and the animals will survive on their own. ~ Betsy Laney, West Gardiner
Letter: Gubernatorial climate
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, December 10, 2013 

As we approach the gubernatorial election year in Maine, and in light of the “interesting” comments made by our governor on Dec. 5 regarding the profit potential in climate change, I am reminded of the election that put such a person into office. From all early indications, LePage’s tea party supporters will hold about the same sway next November, and with Eliot Cutler again as a wild card in the race, the potential for Maine to have another four years with a governor who has squeaked into office with a minority of the state’s voters behind him is not small. We have had three years to try to correct this significant weakness in our election system, and yet we will be going to the polls in November 2014 faced with the same problem. This is unpardonable. ~ Dana Williams, Belfast
Fabulous Find assists Great Works land trust
Seacoast Online - Monday, October 28, 2013 

Fabulous Find thrift store in Kittery gave a boost to conservation recently with proceeds from September sales. Store staff presented a check for $4,332 to Great Works Regional Land Trust to assist the trust's conservation projects and ongoing operations.
Diehard Mainers take advantage of extended woodcock season
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Wednesday, October 10, 2012 

For years, Maine bird hunters in search of woodcock had just 30 days — generally the month of October — to do so. After years of study and discussion, that all changed in 2011. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service extended the woodcock season from 30 to 45 days.
Opinion: Save the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund
Other - Friday, July 22, 2011 

The U.S. House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee has passed a bill devastating the crown jewel conservation program for America's public lands and waters — the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Created in 1965 to offset the environmental risks from offshore oil and gas development, the conservation fund uses money from federal oil and gas leases to protect environmentally sensitive lands and watersheds. Over the years, the fund has paid for the expansion of national, state and local parks as well as conservation easements. All of this is accomplished without spending any federal tax dollars. President Obama's budget for 2012 provided $900 million for the fund. Regrettably, the bill passed by the subcommittee cuts the budget figure by more than 93 percent to the lowest funding level in the program's 45-year history.
Fort Williams home to threatened rabbit
Portland Press Herald - Friday, April 22, 2011 

Volunteers had an arboretum in mind as they cleared invasive plants from part of Fort Williams Park last fall. Little did they realize that their hard work would uncover evidence that the thick mass of plants was habitat for the endangered New England cottontail rabbit. The state Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife visited the site and confirmed that droppings were those of the New England cottontail. The rabbit was placed on Maine's list of threatened and endangered species in 2007 and is a candidate for protection under the federal Endangered Species Act. Officials from the town and the state are discussing what to do in response to the unintentional destruction of habitat.
Opinion: Amherst forest project to benefit people of Maine
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, April 10, 2010 

Just 20 miles east of Bangor, you can walk through deep forests, along bold ledges, streams and wetlands, and find your way to remote ponds named Half-Mile, Partridge, Indian Camp, Ducktail and Snowshoe. On a clear day, the view from Bald Bluff or Bald Mountain includes such landmarks as Cadillac Mountain and Mt. Katahdin. Thanks to more than six years of conservation planning led by the Forest Society of Maine and the town of Amherst, people of all ages will enjoy these places for generations to come.
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