The Maine State Capitol is looking an awful lot like Washington, DC

senate logjam edit state capitol

We need to help our elected officials live up to their responsibility to protect our environment.

This has been a tough session for our environment and there continues to be Maine state legislative realities that put all of us at risk. This includes bills that have supported open pit and mountaintop removal mining; political maneuvering that has delayed attention to the feed-in-tariff, energy-efficiency and divestment legislation; and legislative compromise that has negated a tar sands oil moratorium. If you have been following the many energy bills in the Maine legislature, you are probably aware that they have been combined into an Omnibus Energy Bill (OEB). This bill has some good aspects but it includes some unacceptable aspects as well. As a result environmental groups in Maine are divided on the bill. 350 Maine joins with the Sierra Club-Maine Chapter and Environment Maine in deciding to not support the OEB. The negative elements of the bill – subsidizing natural gas infrastructure rather than moving Maine off fossil fuels, requiring rate payers to support the natural gas market, forcing Mainers to support extreme extraction via fracking of natural gas in other states, and redirecting Efficiency Maine funds away from homeowners (see CORRECTION below) – far outweigh the benefits. Given the pace of the somewhat convoluted process, 350 Maine asks you to contact your representatives to identify your lack of support for the OEB – and your overall concerns for the assault on the environment. You can reach your representative by calling 1-800-423-2900 and your senator at 1-800-423-6900. If you would like a return call, include your name and phone number in your message. Click here for information on who your representatives are and how to email them. CORRECTION: In a recent email and on our Web site and Facebook pages, we incorrectly said that the Omnibus Energy BIll would redirect Efficiency Maine funds away from homeowners; these funds for energy efficiency remain intact. 350 Maine continues to urge lack of support for the Omnibus Energy BIll because of its natural gas agenda. We continue to encourage all of us to make contact with your legislative representatives to express your views in support of our environment – and all of us!