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Andrew LaVogue,
Environment Maine

Senator King joined Environment Maine, local environmental and sportsmen groups to talk climate change

For Immediate Release

For Immediate Release: Tuesday March 29, 2016

Contact: Andrew LaVogue, andrew@environmentmaine.org, 330-429-3319

 

All across the state, Maine people and businesses are witnessing the dangerous effects of climate change first hand. And if we don’t come together to meet these challenges head on, we will continue to see fewer and fewer outdoor opportunities for our anglers, hunters, and everyone who enjoys the wonderful natural resources that Maine has to offer.” - Senator Angus King at Monday’s 2nd Annual Fishing on Thin Ice Forum in Bridgton

Senator King joined Environment Maine, local environmental and sportsmen groups to talk climate change

 

Bridgton, Maine – A community forum organized by Environment Maine, headlined by Senator Angus King on Monday brought out over 50 members of the community to discuss how Maine’s heritage and Maine’s winters have become affected by climate change, and what can be done.

 

Cosponsoring groups included the Lakes Environmental Association, the Sebago Lake Anglers Association, and Loon Echo Land Trust.

 

“Maine has this proud tradition rooted around our winters.” said Andrew LaVogue, campaign organizer with Environment Maine. “My fiancé and I were warned of the harsh winter weather when we moved to Maine, and you know what – we have not felt it. It is well past due for Maine to step up its action on climate change”

The conversation focused about the worries of impacts on Maine’s last remaining native brook trout population, landlocked salmon, and public health.

David Miller, president of the Sebago Chapter of Trout Unlimited was the first to speak. Highlighting the need to act, he emphasized the interest of anglers in this fight. “ The native brook trout is a canary in a coal mine as a warning for climate change."

Moreover, winter and outdoor sports have been affected by climate change. “Activities like ice fishing or snowmobiling are not only inseparable parts of our identity as a state, but they are also important economic drivers that strengthen our communities and help support jobs,” said Senator King.

 

"I am doing this for my kids. I want them to be able to experience the same natural world when they grow up, and the only way that will happen is with action down in DC.” Said Zach Wozich, Vice President of the Sebago Lake Anglers Association and father of two young kids, Samantha (10) and Adrian (8), that joined him on stage Monday.

 

It is not just winter sporting that is seeing impacts. Dr. Bruce Taylor discussed the health impacts associated with a warmer climate and pollution highlighting Maine’s high rates of pediatric asthma and rapid increase in the incidence of insect-borne diseases like Lyme’s Disease.

 

Environment Maine’s Campaigns Director Laura Dorle connected these local impacts to what is happening on the policy front. “Unfortunately, local action is not enough to avoid the worst impacts of global warming. It will take national and international action. Fortunately there’s room for hope on this front as well.  This past December, the world came to the strongest ever-agreement ever reached to tackle global climate change. Even the world’s largest emitters of carbon, China and the U.S., put forth plans to reduce their emissions. A core part of the U.S. plan is an historic policy known as the Clean Power Plan, that will limit carbon emissions from power plants, our largest single source, by 32% by 2030.”

 

Senator King ended by highlighting his support for the Plan adding, “The Clean Power Plan is not separate from the agreement in Paris. We cannot expect the rest of the world to act if the U.S. does not take the lead.”

 

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Environment Maine is a statewide, citizen funded advocacy organization working for a cleaner, greener, healthier future. www.EnvironmentMaine.org