Apr 27, 2017

Maine aquaculture - Big changes coming Monday

On Monday, the Maine Legislature holds public hearings on bills promising big changes to Maine's aquaculture laws. Links to the bills below and at the Marine Resources Committee webpage http://legislature.maine.gov/audio/#206 (scroll down to Monday)

Official summary "This bill transfers authority for the licensing of land-based aquaculture from the Department of Marine Resources to the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry."

Official Summary:"This bill amends the law regarding municipal shellfish conservation programs to clarify that the intertidal zone extends from the high-water mark to the extreme low-water mark and that the shellfish conservation ordinances apply only within the intertidal zones of municipalities."

Official Summary "This bill creates an aquaculture license that exempts the holder from certain requirements in law to hold a separate license for the removal, possession, transport or sale of cultured marine organisms and authorizes the holder to remove, possess, transport or sell cultured marine organisms."

Official summary "This bill amends the aquaculture leasing and licensing laws. It removes the prohibition on the provision by the Department of Marine Resources of promotional and marketing assistance to the aquaculture industry. It extends the potential term of an aquaculture lease from 10 to 20 years. It changes the order of preference for lease applications to include in the 2nd position an individual who currently holds a limited-purpose aquaculture license for the area. It provides a process by which a holder of a standard lease could seek an expansion of the lease area by up to 10% once during the duration of the lease without having to apply for a new lease. It places the licensed activities and criteria for limited-purpose aquaculture licenses in separate statutory provisions. It requires a limited-purpose aquaculture license holder to specify if the license is for commercial or personal use and to identify the growing area and current classification of the area. It adds consideration of any risk to public health to the criteria used in determining whether to grant a limited-purpose aquaculture license. It adds to the eligibility criteria for a limited-purpose aquaculture license the completion of any educational courses that may be required by the Commissioner of Marine Resources."

Apr 22, 2017

Maine legislature 4/19/17 public hearing on scalloping bills LD68 & 1380. AUDIO MP3 & testimony

Listen below to speakers at the 4/19/17 public hearing on LD 68   &  LD 1380  "Owner-Operator Requirement in the Scallop and Sea Urchin Fisheries". (Both bills same name)

The two bills would require  scallop  vessels in Maine waters to be operated by their owners. This to prevent domination of the fishery by larger company-owned scallopers. (Written comments on the bill follow audio)

Full Public Hearing 1hr 53min  

individual speakers may not be in same order.) 

Intro by co chair Senator Joyce Maker 4min

Rep Lydia Blume Intros LD 68. 6min 27sec

Co chair Representative Walter Kumiega introduces LD 1380 7min

DMR Commssioner Pat Keliher & Q&A 21min 

Keliher comments only  7min  ** Keliher QA only 13min

Brian Thomas Me Ctr for Coastal Fisheries  8min

Glenn Libby  Port Clyde 3min 41 sec

Togue Brawn 8min 33sec 

Bill Anderson, Trescott 6min 4sec

Gary Libby 3min40sec

Pete Gasperini, Vinalhaven,  5min

Alex Todd 2min  Casco Bay scalloper 

Brian Soper, diver, Harpswell.& QA  9min 30sec
Andrew House, South Bristol, 45sec  

Reggie House 1 min 7sec

Brian Preney, Boothbay, 2min40sec
Jim Ackley, Machias. 45sec

George "Butch" Harris. Eastport 3min 41sec

James West,  Sorrento, 4min 45sec

Doug McLennan, Spruce Head  3min

Kim Tucker Islesboro. Atty repping ME Lobstering Union 8min 44sec

Public Hearing Testimony on Bills  LD 68 & LD 1302
Blume, LydiaMaine State Legislature
Hanscom, JimResident
Keliher, PatrickDepartment of Marine Resources
Olsen, VirginiaDeer Isle-Stonington
Raymond, MaggieAssociated Fisheries of Maine
Sutter, WilliamWiscasset
Thomas, BrianMaine Center for Coastal Fisheries
Tucker, KimMaine Lobstering Union

Mar 23, 2017

Maine bill could allow ocean windmills to dominate Gulf of Maine viewsheds

AUGUSTA.  A bill coming before the Maine Legislature today could prevent the citizens of dozens of coastal towns from objecting to having their ocean viewsheds dominated day and night by ocean windfarms' siting within eight miles of their shores.  Listen to 3/23/17 public hearing  recordings  (first hour)

This due to the bill's adoption of a thirty year old  incomplete and seriously flawed list of scenic viewsheds of "state and national significance".

LD 901 "An Act To Amend the Laws Governing the Determination of a Wind Energy Development's Effect on the Scenic Character of Maine's Special Places"  does this by enshrining  an outdated and never completed complete  list of coastal Maine's  'official' scenic locations as the only locations deserving of a minimum 15 mile distance for viewshed protection

Ron Huber executive director of Friends of Penobscot Bay warned that  LD 901  would effectively prevent the citizens of more than a dozen coastal towns from objecting to having their ocean viewsheds dominated  by turning windmill blades by day  and by blinking red lights at night."

In Huber v BPL, 2011, Knox County Superior Court Justice Jeffrey Hjelm  was forced to make the absurd declaration that Monhegan lacks any scenic viewsheds of state or national significance, including the island's immensely popular Lobster Cove and Christmas Cove,  beaches reachable solely on foot, 

"These viewsheds are the subjects of 100s if not thousands of paintings, sculptures poems  and other paeans  to the island's seascape" Huber said.  But they are officially deemed insignificant because Maine Coastal Program  made never finalized its 1987 survey of scenic resources along themidcoast  Maine coast.

 Completion requires "field verification"  of aerial map. This was never carried out as noted in the Monhegan scenic map from page 128 of the 1987 report.

"The Environment asnd Natural Resources Committee should table  LD 901 and  direct Maine Coastal Program to update and complete its scenic survey of Midcoast Maine, including Monhegan, first,"  Huber said,   "Otherwise ocean windmills will be allowed to dominate Gulf of Maine viewsheds off Maine  with no accountability to the towns and cities whose viewsheds they would  economically and physically dominate."

Huber also said he hopes that  Maine Aqua Ventus' leaders Jake Ward and  Habib Dagher of the University of Maine  won't renege on their oft-repeated promises to site floating windfarms far enough from shore for the curvature of the earth to mask the renewable energy platforms'  blinking light arrays .

"Dr Dagher is an honorable man," Huber said Surely he'll keep his word ."


Mar 21, 2017

Seven Maine Mining bills gets public hearing. The People speak

The Maine Legislature' s Environment and Natural Resources Committee held a public hearing on March 20, 2017 on seven mining related bills before it : LD 160,  LD 253,  LD 254,  LD 395,  LD 580,   LD 685  & LD 820   Listen to  an always increasing selection of these speakers  (Full audio recording of 3/20/17 mining public hearings available by request )

First Nations


Bills under review at hearing
LD 160,An Act To Prohibit the Mining of Massive Sulfide Ore Deposits under the Maine Metallic Mineral Mining Act,Rep. Robert Duchesne of Hudson
LD 253,  An Act To Repeal the Maine Metallic Mineral Mining Act - Rep. RalphChapman of Brooksville
LD 254, An Act To Implement a Moratorium on Metallic Mineral Mining - Rep. Ralph Chapman of Brooksville
LD 395,  Resolve, Regarding Legislative Review of Chapter 200: Metallic Mineral Exploration, Advanced Exploration and Mining, a Major Substantive Rule  MDEP
LD 580, An Act To Modify the Mining Laws - Sen. Thomas Saviello of Franklin
LD 685 An Act To Establish the Mining Advisory Panel. Rep. Chapman of Brooksville
LD 820 An Act To Protect Maine's Clean Water and Taxpayers from Mining Pollution Sen. Carson of Cumberland

Mar 6, 2017

Rockland Diversity resolution.The Public speaks. AUDIO mp3s

 Listen to more than two dozen residents of Rockland and surrounding towns spoke passionately on the city's proposed diversity resolution at Rockland City Hall  March 6, 22017

Full public comments, 1hr, 41min 
Audio broken into smaller sections. More to come...
Part 1. 10 minutes

Part 2 8min 38 sec

Part 3. 9 minutes

Part 4. 10 minutes

Part 5. 8 min 45 sec

More than 95% spoke in favor of the people's version, not the bland alternative floated by Mayor Will Clayton. Kudos to Becca Shaw Glaser for organizing the people.

Maine Fishermens Forum 2017 Audio mp3s Herring, Coral & NOAA leaders

Feb 26, 2017

FOAA 2016. ME Coastal Prog re Main AquaVentus April- November 2016

Maine Coastal Program's 11/22/16 response to FOAA  request re Aquaventus/Volturnus. The FOPB request was for "Public records in custody of you or your staff dating from April 1, 2016 to November 14, 2016 that pertain to the Maine Aquaventus /Volturnus floating ocean wind turbines project, slated to occupy the Maine Offshore Wind Test Center."    Below the links, see list of persons  within these emails

Full Part 2  All emails in one pdf file

Part 2A, Laura Singer to Matt Nixon 6/29/16 and 7/1/16

Part 2B Barbara Hitchcock to Singer & Singer to Hitchcock 7/5/16

Part 2C Barbara Hitchcock - Nixon 7/6/16

Part 2D Bensinger to Burrowes. 7/12/16 (twice)

Part 2E Barbara Hitchcock, Matt Nixon, Laura Singer, 7/5 & 7/6

Part 2F Beth Nagusky, Todd Burrowes 6/27/ 6/30, 7/18

Part 2G Nixon, Leyden, Burrowes, Marvinney. 7/18, 7/28, 11/1,

Part 2H FOPB FOAA request 11/14/16

State Agencies in emails
Kathleen Leyden  <Kathleen.Leyden@maine.gov> Dir Maine Coastal Program (MCP)
Mark Bergeron  <Mark.Bergeron@maine.gov>   Dir DEP Bureau of Lands
Robert G. Marvinney <Robert.G.Marvinney@maine.gov>  ME Geologic Survey
Patrick C. Woodcock <Patrick.C.Woodcock@maine.gov> Governor's Energy Office
Meredith Mendelson <Meredith.Mendelson@maine.gov>  DMR Deputy Commissioner
Philip deMaynadier <Phillip.deMaynadier@maine.gov>  DIFW Coordinator
Todd Burrowes <Todd.Burrowes@maine.gov>  MCP federal consistency reviewer
Peggy Bensinger  <Peggy.Bensinger@maine.gov>  MDEP's  Asst AG
Matthew Nixon  <Matthew.E.Nixon@maine.gov>  MCP  GIS &  Ocean Planning

Monhegan Residents in emails
* Barbara Hitchcock barbaramonhegan@gmail.com Monhegan resHitchcock House
* Laura T Singer <lsinger@maine.rr.com> Monhegan Resident

Wind Industry in emails
* Beth Nagusky <bnagusky@leedco.org>  Lake Erie Energy Development ,Fmr Maine renewable energy czar

* Info@windindustry.com   "website for the windindustry"

* Val Stori  <val@cleanegroup.org> Clean Energy Group, http://www.cleanegroup.org/blog-author/val-stori/

Windpower, tidepower at 2013 Maine Fishermen's Forum

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management  hosted an event at the 2013  Maine Fisherman;'s Forum

Feb 25, 2017

Maine ocean windpower events at the Maine Fishermen's Forum 2010 -2013

Maine Fishermens Forum ocean windpower events

boem/ff_2012_wind_pt2_ken_fletcher5_1min _30sec.mp3
boem/ff_2012_wind_pt2_ken_fletcher3_2min50 sec.mp3