AUGUSTA -- The bill that would have revived Maine’s plan for adapting to climate change was defeated on Wednesday, when the House voted to override the governor’s veto fell short by a single vote.
“This was really an important bill,” said a disappointed Pete Didisheim, advocacy director for the Natural Resources Council of Maine. “We were trying to get back into a conversation among towns, officials, businesses and many others about the state’s future in a changing climate.” Continue Reading →
A legislative committee today sided with residents in some of the state's western mountains in their fight to have more say over the construction of industrial wind towers in their backyards. If the full legislature approves the bill, it would be the first significant blow to the state's ambitious Wind Energy Act. Continue Reading →
They came from the townships and plantations of Concord, Lexington, Highland, Carrying Place and Pleasant Ridge. They set out for the statehouse in Augusta from the five sparsely populated backcountry communities set between the Kennebec and Carrabassett rivers, from a wooded intervale etched by streams, dappled by lakes and cradled by the hills and mountains of western Maine. Continue Reading →
AUGUSTA – A state legislative committee voted today to put Maine back on track to develop a finished plan for adapting to its changing climate.
That work was suspended after Gov. Paul LePage took office. Continue Reading →
Nearly a dozen of the state’s top environmental groups turned out at a legislative hearing Thursday to urge the state to revive its plan to help Maine adapt to a changing climate. Continue Reading →
Two freshman legislators have filed bills to make dealing with climate change once again a priority for state government.
Rep. Paul McGowan, D-York, submitted a bill designed to make Maine more energy independent and sets goals such as reducing fossil fuel use by 20 percent. Continue Reading →
The moment Mark Spiro walked into G&K Services, an industrial laundry in Waterbury, Conn., the steamy air stung his eyes and made his head ache. The place reeked of chemical solvents: methyl ethyl ketone, xylene, toluene – the sickly sweet scents of spray paint, permanent markers and model glue. Continue Reading →
A howling storm, tidal surge, downed power lines, beaches swept away, coastal residents evacuated. Hurricane Sandy? Yes, but it is also the story of the Patriots Day storm of 2007 along the southern Maine coast. Experts say both storms are harbingers of yet more severe storms to come, made worse by the effects of a warming climate. The streets are dry and clear these days in Ocean Park, the 130-year-old enclave at the southern tip of Old Orchard Beach. Continue Reading →
The pulp mill in Old Town that has been propped up with millions in federal and state aid has tentatively won its battle to double its allowed pollution rather than fix or replace its aging boiler. The state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced on July 14 it would grant most of the Old Town Fuel & Fiber pulp mill’s request to increase its permitted carbon monoxide emissions. The mill has asked to go from 407 tons per year to 1,045; the state approved a 929-ton maximum. Average permitted daily emissions would also be allowed to increase. The decision is not final, however. Continue Reading →
The state has spent millions of dollars to prop up the Old Town pulp mill while steadily fining the mill’s owner for ongoing pollution. And now the biggest fine ever is imminent. The Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting has learned that the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is preparing to slap a $497,000 fine on Old Town Fuel & Fiber for excess air pollution over a 12-month period. That will come on top of $331,000 in penalties assessed by the DEP and the federal
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the past five years. Rather than spend money to solve the persistent air-pollution problem, the mill owners want the state to relax the pollution rules. Continue Reading →