September 24, 2018  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Monday, September 24, 2018 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond). We have posted summaries and links to over 50,000 news articles and announcements. We also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to our attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, Editor
Learn about Marine Mammals of Maine, Oct 1
Event - Posted - Monday, September 24, 2018 

Learn more about Marine Mammals of Maine, the current status of seals in Maine, and how to tell if a stranded animal really needs help and what you should do. At Kennebunk Free Library, October 1, 6 pm.
Drop-in volunteers needed to work on Acadia National Park projects
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 22, 2018 

Drop-in volunteers are needed to work on trails, carriage roads and outdoor projects during sessions organized by Acadia National Park and Friends of Acadia. At park headquarters, September 29, 8:15 am-12:15 pm. No experience is necessary.
The Nature of Craft, Sep 29
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 22, 2018 

A fine art and craft show. At Maine Audubon's Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, September 29, 10 am - 4 pm.
Stand with Hunter in opposing Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court
Action Alert - Thursday, September 20, 2018 

Hunter Lachance, a 15-year-old Mainer with asthma, testified against the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. He explained why Kavanaugh’s opposition to curbing air pollution that crosses state lines would harm Maine and people like him. Urge Senator Collins to vote “no” on Brett Kavanaugh. ~ Kristin Jackson, Natural Resources Council of Maine
Evening for the Environment, Oct 3
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 20, 2018 

A night of camaraderie, celebration, and inspiration for those who care about protecting Maine's environment. Keynote speaker Gina McCarthy, former EPA Administrator. At Brick South on Thompson's Point, Portland, October 3, 5:30-8:00 pm. Organized by Maine Conservation Voters.
Solar 101, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Join ReVision Energy to learn about the benefits of solar technology. At Scarborough Public Library, September 26, 2018 6:30 pm.
Weasels of Maine, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Shevenell Webb, Wildlife Biologist with IF&W, talks about weasel ecology and natural history. At Augusta Nature Club luncheon, at Capital Area Technical Center, Augusta, September 26, 11:30 am, $7 for lunch.
Activist Training for Maine's Environment, Sep 27-Oct 11
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Maine's environmental community is hosting a series of trainings. Learn skills to be a powerful activist and meet fellow environmentalists who want to make a difference in Maine. September 27, Biddeford; October 4: Auburn; October 11, Jefferson; October 18, Falmouth.
Naturalist's Notebook, Sep 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 

Bowdoin biology professor Nat Wheelwright will speak about the book he wrote with Bernd Heinrich, "The Naturalist's Notebook: An Observation Guide and 5-Year Calendar-Journal for Tracking Changes in the Natural World Around You." At Portland Public Library, September 26, 5:30-7:30 pm.
NRCM online auction, thru Sep
Announcement - Tuesday, September 18, 2018 

Online auction benefits Natural Resources Council of Maine, through September.
Help wanted: Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

The Natural Resources Council of Maine is seeking applications for the position of Director of Media Relations and Advocacy Communications. The position provides leadership in advancing NRCM and the organization’s advocacy work through the news media. Deadline: October 11, 2018.
MCV Action Fund 2018 Endorsements
Announcement - Monday, September 17, 2018 

A list of candidates endorsed by the Maine Conservation Voters Action Fund.
Bringing an ocean perspective to an urban estuary, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Karina Nielsen, director of San Francisco State University’s Estuary and Ocean Science Center, will speak at the UMaine Darling Marine Center, Walpole, September 24, 12:15 pm.
Maine's Beaches are Public Property, Sep 24
Event - Posted - Monday, September 17, 2018 

Author and law professor Orlando E. Delogu speaks about public access to Maine’s beaches. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, September 24, 6:30 pm.
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News Items
New England herring fishing to be limited in September
Associated Press - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Interstate fishing regulators say the quota is almost tapped out in one of the most productive herring fishing areas of the Northeast, and they’re shutting the fishery down for the rest of the month. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission says 97 percent of the quota has been harvested from the inshore Gulf of Maine. Herring is the source of a major fishery on the East Coast. The schooling fish is harvested for food, bait, oil and other uses. Recent assessments show the stock is in decline.
Tribal historian: Rising sea levels threaten ancient artifacts and burial sites
York County Coast Star - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Wells Reserve at Laudholm recently hosted Chris Sockalexis, the historic preservation officer for the Penobscot Nation, who spent the day introducing people to the long history of the indigenous people of Maine. Sockalexis said environmental changes, like sea level rise, along with modern day infrastructure projects are threatening the historic sites of these ancient civilizations.
Nine Maine businesses receive over $431,000 to invest in energy efficiency
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Nine Maine businesses will get federal grants to help with energy-efficient investments. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Energy for America Program granted $431,725 to Maine businesses. Most of the money will partially pay for roof-mounted solar panels, but almost half the total, $200,000, was awarded to T&D Wood Energy, a company building a mill in Sanford to convert wood residue and waste into pellets.
Maine author chronicles outdoor adventures, tragic loss in latest book
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

At its best, Earl Brechin’s book “Return to Moose River” is a moving ode to adventures taken, trusted friends and loved ones who have been lost too soon. The book provides a wealth of insight into Maine, its people and the wild places that help make the state special.
The high cost of recycling is hitting these Greater Bangor communities hard
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Soaring recycling costs that show no sign of reprieve have forced at least six Greater Bangor towns to stop offering the service, and more are likely to follow. Clifton, Dedham, Eddington, Hampden, Holden and Orrington have opted to no longer pay for normal recycling services, which have increased 600 percent in some cases, officials in each town said. Except for Orrington, each town is landfilling its recyclables and other waste until the new Fiberight facility in Hampden comes partly online, which should be sometime this fall.
Column: Ten tips to help you get the most out of this year’s Common Ground Fair
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

For three fleeting days Sept. 21-23, the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association holds the Common Ground Country Fair. The fair began in 1977 and has always been a place to learn about organic agriculture, self-sufficiency, solar power, herbal medicine, green living and meat-free food. Today it’s easy to forget that in the 1970s these were all considered counterculture ideas. I attended the first Common Ground Country Fair at age 4. In the years since, I’ve followed the fair as it outgrew the fairgrounds in Litchfield and then Windsor before taking up permanent residence at the more than 300-acre MOFGA campus in Unity. Along the way, I’ve learned how to get the most out the event. Here are 10 tips for a successful, plant-powered visit to the Common Ground Fair. ~ Avery Yale Kamila
Column: States taking the lead on climate change
Sun Journal - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

As large parts of America burn or drown under weird weather conditions made more extreme by global warming, California and other states are doggedly pursuing solutions. What do you say to those who deny climate change is happening — or who dismiss the scientific consensus that humankind is making the problem worse? You say nothing and move forward. It’s long past time to expect any guidance from the environmental saboteurs now running Washington. The only remedy left — besides voting the wreckers out of office — is to help the states that are already doing the work. ~ Froma Harrop
Letter: Aroostook County won’t snub salmon farm
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Sen. Susan Collins issued a statement in January that Nordic Aquafarms’ decision “to build an innovative, environmentally friendly aquaculture facility in Belfast will help expand this important industry and create new jobs for Mainers.” Should Belfast wish to snub this opportunity for economic development and prosperity, I would encourage Nordic Aquafarms CEO Erik Heim to look north to Aroostook County. ~ David Basley, Ashland
Letter: Golden for Congress
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

The author of the anonymous New York Times OpEd tells us Trump is dangerous. But he and others are preventing the worst of it. And he boasts they are getting things done, including “de-regulating,” which will, for example, cause increased levels of air pollution in Maine from the Midwest. In this time of increasing peril, Poliquin, a Republican, has been unaccountable to us and to the nation. Jared Golden has demonstrated by his service in Augusta and the military that he will not duck the responsibilities of office. ~ Gail Marshall, Mount Desert
Letter: Reject court nominee Kavanaugh for his radical views, hostility to Maine values
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

Long-held Maine values reflect conservation and environmental protection. Yet Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh consistently supports corporate polluters against environmental regulations. He always seems to interpret laws in favor of corporations and actively works to weaken our government’s ability to regulate. I urge Sen. Collins to vote for our Maine values and reject Brett Kavanaugh. ~ Sue Hawes, Portland
Opinion: Plastic bag ban would make a difference in Waterville
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

There has been a flurry of misinformation and lies spread about our citizen-led effort to reduce plastic bag pollution in Waterville, mostly from Mayor Nick Isgro. Each American uses approximately 300 plastic bags per year. There are 16,406 Waterville residents. That means over 4.8 million plastic bags are used by Waterville residents every year. Many of those plastic bags end up polluting our neighborhood. When they do make it into our purple trash bags, they end up at the landfill in Norridgewock, where it takes 1,000 years for them to break down. Question 1 on the city ballot would only ban plastic shopping bags at Waterville businesses that are 10,000 square feet or larger. It would not affect thin plastic bags without handles we use at the grocery store. ~ Todd Martin, Waterville
Letter: Practice compassion toward animals
Sun Journal - Wednesday, September 12, 2018 

PETA’s lobster memorial would have encouraged people to show compassion to our fellow members of God’s creation by filling our plates with nutritious vegetables, fruits and grains instead of animals, whom God created to have thoughts, feelings and desires — as well as the ability to experience pain, fear and suffering. Christians are called to be merciful, but there is nothing merciful about boiling a living, feeling being to death in order to gratify human taste buds. ~ Daniel Paden, PETA’s Christian Outreach Division
Interior Secretary Orders Bureaus To Defer Wildlife/Fisheries Issues To States
National Parks Traveler - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

Though the National Park Service Organic Act of 1916 clearly directs the National Park Service to "conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein," Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has directed the agencies under his purview to defer wildlife and fisheries matters to states. At the Coalition to Protect America's National Parks, Mike Murray said, "The Secretary has conveniently overlooked some of the core principles described in the regulations, most likely because those principles do not support his political agenda."
The GOP Has Turned Its Back on Conservation
Outside - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

It’s hard to believe in 2018—when every day brings news of a fresh attempt by the Trump administration to roll back environmental protections—that the Republican Party has a deep tradition of environmental stewardship. Why, and how, did the Grand Old Party turn its back on the environment over the past 40 years? Those questions form the subject of an upcoming book, "The Republican Reversal: Conservatives and the Environment from Nixon to Trump," out October 15. To understand what happened, you have to understand the rise of conservatism and how the Republican Party has really been transformed.
Farmed Scallops are Coming to a Plate Near You
Other - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

Civil Eats - At Bangs Islands Mussels’ waterfront facility in Portland, Matt Moretti, the youthful co-owner, says that scallop farming dovetails with the company’s mission of producing fine seafood using environmentally sustainable methods. Bivalve farming has a smaller environmental footprint than other animal protein production, and is generally more sustainable than finfish farming. Not only can scallops, clams, mussels, and oysters grow without an external feed source—meaning they don’t deplete wild fish stocks like many species of farmed fish, or require corn and soy like livestock—they’re also filter feeders that clean the water as they grow.
First-Ever Bat Gate In Maine Will Help Protect Bats From White Nose Syndrome
Maine Government News - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently installed the first ever bat gate in the state which is designed to prevent people from unintentionally disturbing bats and spreading white-nose syndrome. White-nose syndrome is caused by a fungus and is often fatal to hibernating bats. It has wiped out entire bat colonies and killed more than 6 million bats across North America.
Art project aims to illuminate Kennebec River with fire
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

Skowhegan Selectmen got a first look Tuesday night at “Kennebec on Fire,” a collaborative public art project proposed by the Wesserunsett Arts Council and Main Street Skowhegan. That’s fire on the Kennebec River — an idea that was inspired by the Maine Arts Commission and by the long-running WaterFire project in Providence, Rhode Island, where more than 80 bonfires and artwork by award-winning sculptor Barnaby Evans have been installed on the three rivers of downtown Providence
Marine ‘biodiversity crisis’ tackled with new database of conservation plans
Other - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

The number of protected areas for conservation is rising rapidly, and this trend is set to continue as international policy targets are set in the face of a ‘biodiversity crisis’: the rapid loss of species and degradation of ecosystems. However, despite the vast number of studies and plans for protected areas, there is no easy way to find information on methods, trends, and progress in how to plan for these conservation areas. Now, researchers led by James Cook University, Imperial College London and the University of Maine have taken the first step towards a global repository by launching a database of marine conservation plans.
Wolfe's Neck Center in Freeport more than halfway to funding goal
Forecaster - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment is embarking on a capital campaign to help make its “re-imagined” campus a reality. The center’s staff and board of directors raised more than $31,000 this summer towards a significant part of this reinvestment – the Farm Discovery Gardens. Now, the center is asking for donations to help them reach their six-week $75,000 goal to make the gardens a reality. As of Sept. 10, the center had raised more than $44,000.
Ducktrap River expansion will tap growing smoked salmon market
Mainebiz - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

Ducktrap River of Maine has completed its $5 milion expansion in a vacant warehouse across from its smoked seafood facility in the Belfast Business Park. The expansion increases the Belfast facility's production capacity by 75% and will enable the company to capture an even greater share of the growing smoked salmon market in the United States.
Sierra Club Maine announces new chapter director
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

The Maine Chapter of the Sierra Club has appointed Alice Elliott as its new director to spearhead the environmental advocacy and education efforts of the chapter’s volunteers. Prior to joining the Sierra Club, Elliott served for the past 14 years as the associate director of Community Engagement at Colby College, working with college faculty and students to address community needs, and at Unity College and the Maine Campus Compact developing and leading civic engagement and community service-learning programs.
A paddle on Graham Lake in Ellsworth
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

[video] A large man-made body of water located on the lower portion of the Union River, Graham Lake in Hancock County was created in the 1920s to hold water for hydroelectric power generation and continues to serve that purpose today. Characterized by its silty brown water and exposed islands with heath-like vegetation, the lake covers 7,865 acres and spans the towns of Mariaville, Waltham, Fletchers Landing Township and Ellsworth. There are three public boat launches on the lake, two at the south end and one at the north.
To fight winter moth, parasitic flies to be released in Bath
Times Record - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

In order to fight an invasive species of moth, state scientists will be releasing a species of parasitic fly that will eat the pests from the inside out in Bath on Wednesday. Winter moths have been defoliating plants between Kittery and Mount Desert Island in Maine since 2012. Their larvae feeds on trees such as oaks, maples, apples and blueberries, in early spring, and repeated infestations can cause trees to die.
Opinion: Water is a gift from our Creator. It’s our spiritual duty to protect it.
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

A federal judge recently blocked the Trump administration’s efforts to roll back the clean water rule, reinstating it in 26 states across the country, including here in Maine. This ruling blocks the repeal of common-sense clean water standards, and stopped the Trump administration and its allies in Congress from undermining the Clean Water Act. As a person of faith, I view water as sacred and a healing force. I encourage the Environmental Protection Agency to end the reckless attack on the clean water rule so that we can be the good stewards that the Creator calls us to be and ensure that all communities in Maine and beyond have safeguards against poor water quality. ~ Andy Burt
Falmouth celebrates its waterfront legacy
Forecaster - Tuesday, September 11, 2018 

The Falmouth Waterfront Bash, part of the Falmouth 300 celebration, drew all kinds of participants Sept. 8.
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