Dec 30, 2013

FOIAs and FOAAs related to Penobscot Bay. 1990s to 2010s

Here are some of  the results of Freedom of Access Act and Freedom of information Act requests. From between 1995 to 2010.

2010 Federal  Ocean Windpower off Maine
Bureau of Ocean Energy Management 39 pages

2010 State Wind & Tidal Energy
*  BPL's Dan Pritchard re Monhegan   January 14, 2010 12 pages
Maine tidal energy August 2010 26 pages

2008-2009 Sears Island Joint Use Planning Committee 
MDOT Duane Scott Dec 10, 2008 10 pages
Governor Baldacci November - December 2008  60 pages
MDOT Commissioner Cole. June 1 - June 17, 2009  24 pages
Governor Baldacci & staff. January, February-March, 2009 28 pages.
Karin Tilberg November -December 2008  23 pages
Duane Scott April 2009 22 pages
Baldacci staff, April-June 2009 59 pages
MDOT Cole staff May 8 - May 29, 2009 64 pages
MDOTJune 18 - August 3, 2009. 63 pages
Sears Island Mitigation Bank plan. 28 pages

Sears Island Cargoport Proposal 
1990s  State and federal FOIA'd documents 45 documents

Dec 26, 2013

Maine offshore wind law - listen to the hearing and worksessions that created it in 2010

Listen to audio recordings of legislators, Maine fishermen, windmill proponents, opponents, regulators, scientists and others at public hearings and work sessions in March 2010, on LD 1810 An Act To Implement the Recommendations of the Governor's Ocean Energy Task Force.  The bill promotes tidal energy and wave energy production in state waters, but direct commercial windfarming interests to federal waters ten miles and further offshore. Recordings below are from March 11, 18, 23 and 24.

3/11/10  Public Hearing on LD 1810 

Introduction 7 minutes 
Senator Hobbins Sponsor of LD 1810 6 min
Representative Leila Percy, Co chair Marine Resources Comm 2 min
Beth Nagusky MDEP Energy Office 12 min
Beth Nagusky questioned 18 min
Senator Kevin Raye 8 min
Rep Stacey Fitts, Co-sponsor 12 min
Rep Seth Berry 4:17 min
George Lapointe. DMR  6 min
George Lapointe Q & A  5 min
Chuck Digate, Neptune Wind 
Chuck Digate, Neptune Q&A
Bob Baynes. Lobsterman  2 min
Shawn Mahoney, CLF  7 min
John Ferland, Ocean Renewable Power Co  9 min
Lance Burton of Castine 3 min
Bill Staby, Resolute Energy  4min
J. Monroe, Blue Water Dynamos  11 min
Ron Huber, Penobscot Bay Watch 7 min

Bob Moore, Dead River Oil, 11 min
Ned Bulmer, Maine Energy Marketing Assn  9 min
Carol Lee ex head of Bangor Hydro 7min 
Caroll Lee, Q&A 6 min
John Pierce of Harspwell 4 min
Chris O'Neill, Saco 10 min  

3/18/10  work session  # 1 on LD 1810                                                                 

3/23/10 work session #2 on LD 1810
Introduction 90 seconds
Beth Nagusky Q&A 2 12 minutes
Beth Nagusky Q&A 4 9 minutes
Beth Nagusky Q&A 5 17 minutes

3/24/10 work session #3 on LD 1810 (Final )
Part 1 14 minutes Review of  amendments
Part 2 13 min BEP & Municipalities
Part 3 7 min Preamble amendments. Criteria for projects
Part 4 12 min Ocean wind green standard offer 
Part 5 8 min  pricing and funding
Part 6 16 min Where's PUC. What jobs would come
Part 7 13 min Pilot project RFP  Cert of convenience 
Part 8 9 min Not enough info to make goals
Part 9 10 min renewable energy goals
Part 10 8 min Rep Thibideau & Public Advocate Davies
Part 11 8 min  Stop hiding the costs. Make Maine leader.
Part 12 10 min Involve marine resource advisory council
Part 13 11 min Ocean wind green standard  discussed
Part 14 9 minAadditional transmission line capacity issue
Part 15 4 min duplicate policy statements fix. Language review tomorrow
Part 16 8 min Final Motion and discussion.

Dec 17, 2013

Green Crabs Summit - have the crabs won?

Listen to two speakers then a discussion on the monumental invasion and occupation of Maine state coastal waters by Carcinus Maenas, the Green Crab, and find out who won "this round".

Dr Cynthia McKenzie of the Canadian Dept of Fisheries and Oceans, Newfoundland,  and Chad Coffin, head of Maine Clammers Association, spoke in the afternoon session of the December 16, 2013 Maine Green Crab Summit at the University of Maine in Orono. The event was also streamed live on the internet.

Cynthia McKenzie 30 min 
Chad Coffin, 36 minutes
Panel Discussion 17 minutes
Pat Keliher  13 minutes

Recordings also include a discussion - occasionally very heated - among the panel and the audience,  including those on the internet, followed by closing remarks by Maine DMR Commissioner Pat Keliher.  The most important consensus of the summit was to kill as many green crabs as possible. Efforts are also underway by the Maine Clammers Association to establish gated-off crab-free coves.

 Coffin of the Clammers' Association heaped scorn on "coastal cleanups" as wastes of money and volunteer energy for cosmetic improvements, and suggested  the money and effort be better spent on  habitat and or species restoration.

Coffin also urged that towns with under 20 licensed commercial clammers lose their municipal shellfish commission, saving DMR money to concentrate on those places with viable shellfisheries and saving those towns the expense of an armed shellfish warden. "There's no clams for them to protect? Doffin said.

Little more than a century after introduction into the Gulf of Maine, the swarming green crab has succeeded in wiping out softshelled clams and mussels.

It is outcompeting lobsters for shallow water lobster trap bait and other foods. Is gnawing eelgrass flat and is boring holes in saltmarsh sediments.

Have the green crabs won?

Dec 4, 2013

Maine's 2014 shrimp fishery cancelled just before start of season

According to the Rockland Courier Gazette, Maine's 2014 shrimping season, slated to start in January, has been cancelled - along with the rest of New England. Culprits: overfishing, acid pollution, warming water, three years of mass hatch failure

2015 Shrimp Season Cancelled. 
By Juliette Laaka, Courier Gazette - Knox Village Soup 12/3/13

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Northern Shrimp Section voted Dec. 3 to cancel the 2014 shrimp season due to a collapse of the stock, confirmed the organization's Director of Communications Tina Berger.
Commercial fishery plus 3 years of hatch failures = collapse.

"The writing has been on the wall for years," said Port Clyde Fresh Catch owner and former shrimp fisherman Glen Libby in response to the decision. He said he is not surprised, and added fishermen who went out last year did not earn much money.

"We are affected though, there's no shrimp to peel," he said.

Libby's company processes shrimp, and said during the winter, crabs will be the fill-in for his business. He added fishermen will most likely shift to catching scallops and continue fishing for lobster and crabs if they have the necessary permits.

He said the fishery will correct itself, citing the last year-long shutdown resulted in an increase in stock numbers.

The Last Tow? ASMFC: shrimpers must stay in port in 2014
Last year's season, which began in late January, yielded about a quarter of the allowable catch allotted the previous year, 1.4 million pounds. The commission's technical committee recommended not having a 2013 season due to over fishing and environmental stresses on the stock, but a shorter season with less yield was allowed.

Surveys indicate three successive years of recruitment failure and continuing warm temperatures mean poor prospects for the near future, both in terms of the fishery and for stock recovery. A season shut down is recommended to maximize spawning potential of the population.

The Gulf of Maine fishery for northern shrimp is managed through an interstate agreement between the states of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusett.