November 19, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Friday, November 17, 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 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
Protecting the Nature of Maine Grants for Maine Middle Schools
Announcement - Friday, November 17, 2017 

The Natural Resources Council of Maine (NRCM) has eight $500 grants available to middle school teachers and club leaders (6th, 7th, or 8th grades) in Maine for projects that educate and engage students in Maine’s environment and the value of protecting it. Deadline is November 30.
Teddy Roosevelt Maine Conservation Award
Announcement - Wednesday, November 15, 2017 

The Teddy Roosevelt Maine Conservation Award given by Maine Woods Forever recognizes young people and youth organizations whose efforts are in the spirit of Roosevelt’s conservation ethic and achievements, and recognizes what Maine’s young people are doing to conserve our forest heritage, with an eye to their potential as future conservation leaders. Deadline for Nominations: January 31, 2018.
Block Trump's dangerous climate denier from the CEQ
Action Alert - Monday, November 13, 2017 

Kathleen Hartnett White, Trump's pick to lead the Council on Environmental Quality, isn't just your run-of-the-mill, extreme right-wing climate-denier. She's a senior fellow at the Koch brothers and Exxon-funded Texas Public Policy Foundation. She believes carbon dioxide is harmless "plant food," equates belief in climate change to "paganism," calls solar and wind power "unreliable and parasitic," and asserts that coal use in the 1800s ended slavery in the United States.
AMC Maine Chapter Annual Meeting, Nov 18
Event - Posted - Saturday, November 11, 2017 

Speakers: Steve Tatko, Appalachian Mountain Club’s Land Manager, will talk on the AMC’s Maine Woods Initiative. Jed Williamson will talk on Accidents in Outdoor Pursuits - Their Causes and Cures. At Portland, November 18.
Conserving Maine’s Bats: A Workshop for Woodland Owners, Foresters and Loggers, Nov 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 9, 2017 

Piscataquis County Soil & Water Conservation District, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, and Maine Department of Transportation, will hold a workshop on Maine bats. At Dover-Foxcroft Congregational Church, November 16, 9-10:30 am.
Nature Based Fiction & Truth, Nov 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 9, 2017 

Sandra Neily will discuss novel ways to elevate conservation, nature based economics as well as outdoor-themed fiction. She will sign and read from her novel, "Deadly Trespass." At Curtis Library, Brunswick, November 16, 7 pm. Hosted by Maine Appalachian Mt. Club.
Little Long Pond: A Field Guide to Four Seasons, Nov 16
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 9, 2017 

Author talk and book signing with Samuel Eliot and John Rivers. At Jesup Memorial Library, Bar Harbor, November 16, 7 pm.
Nature Based Fiction & Truth, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, November 8, 2017 

Sandra Neily will discuss nature-based fiction as well as sign and read from her debut novel, "Deadly Trespass." At Shaw Memorial Library, Greenville, November 15, 6 pm.
Seeing the Future Forest Through the Trees: Potential Changes and Management Responses, Nov 15
Event - Posted - Wednesday, November 8, 2017 

Dr. Nicholas Fisichelli will discuss how can forest managers can respond to ongoing and projected changes. At UMaine at Machias, November 15, 6:30 pm.
Online sustainability journal ‘Spire’ invites submissions
Announcement - Tuesday, November 7, 2017 

Spire: The Maine Journal of Conservation and Sustainability invites submissions for the second issue of the online journal, slated for release in spring 2018. Deadline: Dec 10.
Oil Drilling Means Oil Spilling
Action Alert - Tuesday, November 7, 2017 

You still have time to stop the Trump Administration from paying for tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires by opening oil drilling in the Atlantic Ocean. Mainers have nothing to gain and everything to lose from this dangerous scheme. ~ Natural Resources Council of Maine
Maine Farmland Trust Annual Meeting, Nov 14
Event - Posted - Tuesday, November 7, 2017 

Speakers: Amber Lambke, Maine Grains; Rob Tod, Allagash Brewing Co.; and Sara Williams, Aurora Mills & Farm. At United Farmers Market Building, Belfast, November 14, 5:30-8 pm.
Mushing in Maine and Beyond, Nov 14
Event - Posted - Tuesday, November 7, 2017 

Polly Mahoney of Mahoosuc Guide Service will share her dogsledding experiences from the Yukon Territory to Maine to Nunavut and northern Quebec. She will bring a couple of her friendly sled dogs. At Bangor Public Library, November 14, 6 pm.
Baxter State Park sign auction, thru Dec 6
Announcement - Monday, November 6, 2017 

Auction of retired Baxter State Park signs, plus the historic dinner bell from Kidney Pond Camps. Friends Baxter State Park will donate half the proceeds to Baxter State Park, and half will support FBSP programs. Ends December 6.
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News Items
Lobster Catch Might be Less this Year
Associated Press - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Members of the lobster industry say Maine's lobster haul might be less this year, and prices have drifted downward for both lobstermen and consumers. American lobster fishing is in the midst of a multiyear boom, with Maine fishermen setting a record of nearly 131 million pounds last year. Fishermen in the state have caught more than 100 million pounds for six years in a row after never previously reaching that total. But market analyst John Sackton says some in the industry believe catch could be as much as 30 percent off this year. Meanwhile, prices for live lobsters are lagging behind last year. Maine is far and away the biggest lobster producing state in the U.S. Maine fishermen accounted for more than 80 percent of the nationwide catch last year.
Legal dispute snags revitalization of Old Town mill
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

The latest attempt to transform a shuttered pulp mill in Old Town into a production center for wood-based energy and fuels is tangled in a lawsuit filed by a prospective buyer, who says he was illegally pushed out of a $10 million deal in favor of a competitor. Samuel Eakin of Cape Elizabeth, the managing director of Relentless Capital Co. and an allied company, Old Town Utility & Technology Park, who hoped to sell wood-based energy to UMaine, sues over breach of contract and wants the sale to a third party blocked. The university operates the Forest Bioproducts Research Center in a corner of the mill, where it’s working to commercialize fuels, chemicals and materials made from wood. That’s why the future of the Old Town mill has taken on a broader significance.
State largely ignores role as seas grow more acidic
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Despite a bipartisan recognition of a threat to Maine's shellfish industry, leadership on the issue has fallen to a group of concerned volunteers. “For a state whose identity and economy is so heavily dependent on marine resources, I think it is really shameful that we are not doing enough to look at the threats of changing ocean chemistry,” says Bill Mook, who had to develop water treatment systems after watching acidic water kill crop after crop of newly hatched oysters. Rep. Devin says, “It’s the governor and a few of his minions that have blocked the ocean acidification bills. We’re not going to be able to do anything environmental with Governor LePage in office.”
Scientist Steve Eayrs knows how to build a better fish trap
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Steve Eayrs, a research scientist at Gulf of Maine Research Institute since 2007, who works in the area of fish behavior and gear technology, has designed some new spins on old gear, intended to make fishing more efficient and sustainable.
Maine farmers raising turkeys in record numbers
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Maine farmers are increasingly raising turkeys for the meat market with the number of live turkey poults being brought into the state up 30 percent in the last year. Farmers say they’re responding to a demand for locally raised meat and a lucrative market.
Planting of Atlantic salmon eggs in Kennebec River starting to pay dividends
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Atlantic salmon were first listed as threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 2000 in a small portion of Maine. In 2009 the list was expanded and the salmon’s status was elevated to endangered. Since 2010 as many as 300,000 to 1 million Atlantic salmon eggs grown in a hatchery have been planted, or seeded, in the Kennebec watershed. The Sandy isn’t the only river in Maine where hatchery-grown eggs are planted. Marine Resources also has planted salmon eggs in the Sheepscot and Penobscot rivers, the Downeast Salmon Federation has in the Machias, Pleasant and Narraguagus rivers, and the Saco River Salmon Restoration Alliance has in the Saco.
Column: Finish the season with a local paddle
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

We are wrapping up our 2017 canoeing with the theme of getting out there one last time before the snow flies, and exploring someplace close to home. In our case that means an outing on the nearby Androscoggin River in Brunswick. The big windstorm of a few weeks ago has created extra yard work for many of us, so getting away for a daylong outing is not as likely right now. A few hours on the water in a pretty setting provides a much-needed therapeutic interlude. ~ Michael Perry
Column: Extra preparation worth it for the joy of winter hiking
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Hiking during the winter feels like a totally different exercise than the rest of the year, with a solitude and silence that don’t exist during the warmer months. The flow of rivers slows to a trickle or stops completely, and many animals migrate to warmer climates or begin to hibernate. The buzz of insects, a constant annoyance during the summer, dies completely. And, while some hardy souls enjoy hiking during the winter, the trails empty almost completely. The cold also makes winter hiking a more dangerous adventure. This isn’t meant to discourage winter hiking, but to encourage those embarking on it to take due caution and prepare. ~ Josh Christie
Column: Perspective needed in debate on deer scents
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

The threat of Chronic Wasting Disease is very real. It continues to spread, though we still don’t know how, or ultimately what impact that could have on wild deer populations. We could take the cautious approach and ban urine-based scents based solely on the possibility that something could happen, though there’s no real evidence to support that notion. Or we could let hunters continue to spend their $9 an ounce and hope nothing bad does happen. I guess the right course of action is a matter of perspective. ~ Bob Humphrey
Opinion: The rare beauty of a 64-crayon fall day
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

This was a Crayola kind of day. What’s that, you say? Well, it’s a day where if I had a box of 64 Crayola crayons and, if I could draw, I could use every single color! Oh! If I could only draw! ~ Anne Cataldo, Boothbay
Letter: Birding adds joy to exploring Maine
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, November 19, 2017 

Deirdre Fleming’s Nov. 5 story about deer hunters who enjoy birding was right on the mark. My wife, Linda, and I started birding 12 years ago, and I wish we’d started much sooner. Birding adds so much to our trips, and we now often travel just to see birds. You don’t have to be an expert to enjoy birding in Maine. And it sure does add a wonderful element to spending time in our great outdoors. ~ George Smith, Mount Vernon
Column: Elk hunt, part 2: The trail food search
Sun Journal - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

This is part two of a three part column series about my fall elk hunt to Colorado. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Big backlash resurrects big-game ban
Washington Post - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

A combination of public and private pressure prompted President Trump to overturn his administration’s recent move to allow elephants shot for sport in Zimbabwe and Zambia to be imported back to the United States as trophies, according to interviews with several individuals briefed on the decision. Trump’s announcement Friday that he was putting the decision “on hold” until he could personally review it marked animal welfare activists’ first federal victory since the president took office in January.
NASA map shows 20 years of changing seasons
Associated Press - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

NASA captured 20 years of changing seasons in a striking new global map of the home planet. The polar ice caps and snow cover are shown ebbing and flowing with the seasons. The varying ocean shades of blue, green, red and purple depict the abundance – or lack – of undersea life. Two decades – from September 1997 to this past September – are crunched into 2 1/2 minutes of viewing.
Bonn climate talks end with progress despite glitches
Associated Press - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

Delegates stumbled out of an all-night negotiating session at this year’s global climate talks, expressing satisfaction Saturday at the progress made toward creating a comprehensive rulebook for fighting global warming. The two-week meeting in Bonn was billed as a “blue-collar” event designed to work out technical details of the 2015 Paris climate accord. But fears had loomed beforehand that the administration of President Trump, who rejects the Paris agreement, would seek to block any advances seen as counter to American interests. In the end, most agreed that U.S. diplomats had engaged constructively, while delegations from several American states, cities and businesses were praised for committing themselves to the goals of the Paris agreement.
Farmers look to extend vegetable growing season
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

While Maine’s potato farmers have a “long tradition” of growing during the summer season and storing their harvest for the rest of the year, more and more vegetable farmers are using greenhouses to actively grow hardier vegetables through December, January and February. The greenhouses employed by Maine farmers are often unheated and made of durable sheets of plastic over a metal frame. Their technology has improved, so that the structures can better withstand the snow and other elements of winter. They’re also commonly called “hoop houses” and “high tunnels.”
What you should know about exploring Sears Island, a treasure of midcoast Maine
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

Birders, beachgoers, clamdiggers and history buffs — you’ll find them all on Sears Island, a 936-acre treasure conserved and open for public recreation off the coast of Searsport. One of the largest undeveloped islands on the Eastern Seaboard, Sears Island has a fascinating history, is rich in natural resources, and is connected to mainland Searsport by a causeway, making it easily accessible for visitors year round.
This once low-key fishing city could become Maine’s next big cruise ship destination
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

Cruise ships anchor in Rockland harbor far less often than they do in Portland, Bar Harbor or even Boothbay Harbor. But as the sight of huge passenger ships becomes more common in a harbor accustomed to much smaller fishing vessels, city leaders are grappling to cope with the impacts.
Letter: Trump makes America irrelevant
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, November 18, 2017 

With actions taken by President Donald Trump since January 2017, we have abdicated our nation’s respected international leadership on the major economic and environmental issues. Trump talks about “America first” while making us irrelevant. Trump withdrew the United States from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, an international trade agreement affecting 40 percent of all world trade. In June, Trump announced he would withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement of 2015. The agreement has now been adopted by every other nation in the United Nations as response to the record breaking rising greenhouse gas emissions. I am saddened. ~ Pam Person, Orland
Editorial: Wind storm highlighted weaknesses in Maine electrical grid. Who will fix them?
Bangor Daily News - Friday, November 17, 2017 

Mainers understand that power outages happen. But, the long-lasting power outage that began on Oct. 30 left utility customers, town officials, state lawmakers and others with a lot of questions. Both the Public Utilities Commission and Maine Legislature plan to review the storm’s impacts and costs. The PUC, as part of its routine regulatory process, will determine how much of the repair and restoration costs are passed on to the utilities’ ratepayers. The task is less about assigning blame than about making needed improvements to minimize outages in the future.
Lawsuit alleges New England energy companies overcharged customers
Portland Press Herald - Friday, November 17, 2017 

A class-action lawsuit has been filed against the parent company of Central Maine Power Co. and another energy company alleging that the two conspired to raise electricity rates for customers in New England. The suit, filed in federal court in Boston on Tuesday, alleges that Avangrid, the Connecticut-based corporate parent of CMP, and Eversource Energy, inflated electricity prices to New England customers by as much as 20 percent from 2013 to 2016. The suit says that 14.7 million customers in New England were affected by “a unique monopoly” between Eversource and Avangrid that resulted in $3.6 billion in over charges.
A History of Efforts to Reduce Nitrogen in Casco Bay
Maine Environmental News - Friday, November 17, 2017 

After nearly a year of work, the Portland Water District and Friends of Casco Bay developed an agreement aimed at reducing nitrogen pollution from sewage effluent. The collaboration helped the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) develop a 139-page, five-year permit for the City of Portland’s East End Wastewater Treatment Facility, which is managed by the Water District, that will better protect water quality. The $12 million upgrade to the plant’s aeration system may help reduce nitrogen in the plant’s effluent waters by 500 to 1,000 pounds each day.
Region’s natural gas pipelines near capacity in winter, operator says
Associated Press - Friday, November 17, 2017 

The independent corporation overseeing the operation of New England’s power system says natural gas pipelines feeding the region are so constrained that electricity prices are driven higher during cold winters. ISO New England President Gordon van Welie says regional pipelines were built for gas distribution companies’ heating demands, not for power generation. He says they’re at, or near capacity, in winter and generators have to use more expensive fuels, including oil and liquefied natural gas.
What do you do when the butcher gives you the wrong moose?
Bangor Daily News - Friday, November 17, 2017 

For years, I’ve heard the whispered tales from disgruntled hunters who were certain that the meat cutter they’d trusted with their deer or moose or bear had engaged in some nefarious behavior, and had clearly, obviously, certainly stolen prime cuts. And since it’s basically impossible to convince an angry hunter that shooting their moose six times may have made some of the meat inedible, and led to a less-than-expected yield, I’ve chosen to keep quiet. Then, I ended up with a mystery of my own. Simply put, the moose I shot in October grew.
Drought means another tough year for Maine bees
Bangor Daily News - Friday, November 17, 2017 

The final numbers for 2017’s Maine honey production are not known yet, but those who work with bees and with the beekeepers say it is likely down from last year. There are 1,147 registered beekeepers in Maine managing 9,853 hives, according to Lund. The dry weather was especially tough on beekeepers in the southern part of the state.
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