May 26, 2018

Maine Transmission Line Proposal Bringing Out the Best In Excuse Du Jour

This morning I was reading an article online at MainePublic.org about Central Maine Power Company’s proposal to run a 145-mile transmission line from Quebec, Canada through Central Maine eventually providing electricity to Massachusetts.

Environmentalists claim that the project is not a “green” one and thus would do nothing to stop the world from coming to an end due to global warming. Proposers of the project are confused wanting to know how much greener can you get than producing electricity from moving water.

Others don’t want to see more forest cut down to build a new and ugly transmission line or widen existing ones.

I’m reminded of an old story and have a suggestion of my own to help the cause.

First the story (which I have told on this website a million times). A man goes next door to his neighbor’s house and asks if he can borrow his ax. The neighbor, with a smile on his face, of course, says, “No, you can’t borrow my ax because it’s Tuesday.”

The man, acting very confused, like the representatives of CMP, asks, “What’s Tuesday got to do with it?”

“Nothing,” said the neighbor, “but if I don’t want to loan you my ax, one excuse is as good as another.”

The other is this. If you’ve ever been in the vicinity of Disney World in Orlando, Florida you might have noticed these somewhat unique transmission towers.

Simply beautiful aren’t they????

My suggestion would be to demand (wink-wink) that CMP constructs transmission towers in the form of a bull moose. This would be representative of Maine and it would solve part of the problem with reducing gases that cause global warming (we’re all gonna die). You see these moose don’t need to poop and thus no methane gases released. The project now becomes “GREEN!” THE WORLD IS SAVED and Massachusettes gets their electricity so they can further destroy the planet with everything else they do with it.

Oh, Lord! It’s hard to be humble.

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Reasonable Assessment of Quebec Hydro Transmission Line Through Maine if the Ridiculous Climate Change Nonsense Was Left Out

One will have to decide for themselves about whether widening and cutting another electric power transmission line through Maine is an eyesore and/or whether it is in anyway actually beneficial to the Maine people.

In a Bangor News opinion piece, Steve Bien, a board member of the Western Maine Audubon society, a totalitarian environmentalist group, fills readers full of climate change balderdash and toxic waste from rotting plants and vegetation from flooded lands caused by Quebec hydro dam building.

Please, give us all a break from the BS.

Nothing in this proposal has anything to do with climate change and “green” energy and how we are going to save the planet. Save the planet, save the planet, save the planet. I’m not the only intelligent person in this world who tires from the endless clap-trap about Climate Change.

This writer tells us of how important it is that we replace carbon-heavy energy with “green” energy so as not to cause more global warming. Horsepucky!

In addition, we’re all going to die from mercury poisoning as the author states that mercury levels have been in the blood of the Cree and Innu for 50 years. What is not said is that mercury levels were in their ancestor’s blood as well because it is naturally occurring.

However, the nonsense about the dangers from “Plant decomposition on a massive scale produces toxic amounts of mercury” and this “massive” amount of toxic mercury is “…far beyond the cleaning capacity of natural systems” – Oh my God, we’re ALL GONNA DIE!! And if that isn’t enough the “major source of carbon dioxide and methane” from flooded plants will surely do us all in. Poor Mother Gaia can’t keep up with the scrubbing.

WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!! PREPARE FOR THE DOOM!!!

The amount of land flooded in Quebec amounts to about the same as adding an eyedropper of pee-pee to an Olympic-sized swimming pool.

Leave out all the lying BS about “clean” energy and “green” energy and how Climate Change is killing us, and make your decisions based upon actual facts that lay in front of you. What’s in the proposal for Maine? It should be obvious what’s in it for Quebec Hydro, CMP, and Massachusetts. But what’s in it for Maine besides a few quick bucks?

Is it really an environmental disaster? Is it really a blight on the land? Is the exchange for a few dollars worth it? Will this event bring lower electric rates to Maine?

Forget Climate Change. It’s nothing more than an environmentalist’s midsummer nights’ dream.

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When Money Talks and Shit Walks

According to the Boston Globe, Central Maine Power Company (a Spanish-owned company) wants to run an electric transmission line from the Canadian border, through the North Woods, crossing the Kennebec Gorge, and wending its way to a substation in Lewiston. The purpose of the proposed transmission line is to sell electricity to no other place than Massachusetts.

This same trick was attempted in New Hampshire with a project called Northern Pass, where residents and ultimately the state government said no thank you and don’t let the door hit you in the butt on the way out.

With this proposal, it seems the energy supplier intends to bribe their way to victory offering millions of dollars to poor struggling communities that rely mostly on tourism, outdoor recreation, and the lumbering industry, all of which are a dying breeds thanks to environmentalism and a decaying social structure which thinks it has no use for any of this.

But the money sounds good and several individuals and towns in the path of the 150-foot wide clear cut appear eager to have the eyesore that Massachusetts wants and doesn’t have to live with in exchange for money, some jobs during construction, that more than likely will be meted out to out-of-state and/or out-of-country workers, and funded with money that comes from anywhere but Maine.

But even with all that, consider the utter nonsense the sellers of the project are spewing.

They first want people to believe that this project will save the planet, by producing “clean” energy from hydro-power locations which will cut down on carbon emissions to curb Global Warming. Anyone with a brain knows this is utter nonsense that cannot and will never be supported by real science.

Consider the statement…Please! There is ample room for discussing how building a dam smack dab in the middle of a perfectly good river is harmful to the environment.

And then, millions and millions of board-feet of trees are going to be removed from the forest. Last time I checked trees feed off absorbed carbon dioxide giving off oxygen for all of us to breath. Can removing all the trees save the planet?

During construction of the transmission line, carbon-burning equipment will pollute the environment, erosion will happen, wildlife will be disrupted, vernal pools destroyed, brooks and rivers will be dirtied and upset, more roads built to gain access, and the list is endless. How is any of this good for the environment and how will it have any effect on fake global warming? It’s “clean” energy from water power, therefore it is good?

Seriously!

I know I mostly waste my time talking about Global Warming because the masses are now completely sold on its validity and all that is measured these days is how ga-ga the zombies are at the moment about how it might affect their self-gratifying lives and their love affairs with cell phones and social media. Nothing else matters.

Some of the environmentalists are saying they aren’t sold on the idea that hydropower sent over a new transmission line will reduce the effects of global warming and instead suggest that CMP (a Spanish-owned company – oh, did I already mention that?) should take the money and put it to work building more solar and wind energy projects.

Consider this suggestion for a moment. Think of the environmental destruction that takes place when solar fields and windmill projects are built. Massive amounts of forests are forever destroyed and still transmission lines must be built in order to get power from point A to point B.

In the proposed new transmission line, it would pass the Appalachian Trail 3 times and cross directly over the Kennebec Gorge. Some find this an atrocity that cannot happen because environmentalists use the trails and consider the Gorge as untouchable. And yet, they think nothing of raping mountain tops and erecting the ugliest of all uglies – windmills towering well over 200 feet placing a blight on the skyline, especially when one catches on fire after it has killed hundreds of birds and changed the habitats and habits of all sorts of wildlife. But, but, but… we’re saving the planet.

And all of this will save the planet?

But saving the planet be damned, it appears money will talk and shit will walk. Here’s some of what CMP is promising the residents that will be impacted by this project.

It will create 1,700 temporary jobs and bring in $18 million a year in new property taxes. (Sounds like a lot of money but when you spread it out through numerous towns the length of the transmission line, it’s not that sizable that it would matter much.

CMP is pledging to spend $50 million over 40 years on “programs” to “assist” low-income families and to reroute the Appalachian Trail. Gobbledee-Gook!!! A million a year…until nobody keeps count anymore and then what? Pledge be damned!

You will have to decide for yourself about whether you think the project is a good one. The real issue here is the continued lying and hypocrisy that still exists and always will from two-faced environmentalists who swear to save the planet with one breath while something else is destroyed that is more destructive than what is attempted to be saved. It is utter insanity.

The world won’t come to an end if power lines are strung across the Kennebec Gorge. But don’t think for a minute that swapping that proposal for another super ugly, environmentally destructive windmill project will save the day. Give me a break!

However, it appears that the enticement of some temporary money will win out. Some in Maine will see effects of bribe money but most won’t, all for the prospect of delivering electricity to Massachusetts. As was suggested to me, if Massachusetts needs the electricity, let it be their problem and not Maine’s. Serious thought should be given about what happens to Maine that will only benefit Massachusetts and to hell with dirty bribe money.

If Massachusetts insists on “clean” energy, I’m sure there are many great locations to put up a nuclear power plant and be done with it. GASP!!!!

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Wind Energy Blows! It’s a Racket Paid For By You and I

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To Ask If Fighting Climate Change is “Worth It” Admits Climate Change Exists

I just finished reading the Shake, Rattle, and Troll newsletter. One item in the newsletter was an Op-Ed titled, “Is Fighting Climate Change Worth Sacrificing Modern Civilization.” To be forthcoming, I consider Don McDowell and John Kolezar of Shake, Rattle, and Troll (not the authors) to be my friends and I have been a guest on their Sunday morning radio broadcast in Arizona once or twice. Having said all this, by this place in time Don and John have probably already figured out that am not an echo-chamber of the fake dichotomy of political bias. I am my own man, but there’s another name for what that some might prefer to call me. Let me explain briefly.

Just this past Fall I was asked a question by someone that I have known for many years. This was his question: “Were you born an asshole or did you grow into it?” Once I figured out the question was more serious than in jest, I couldn’t really come up with a quick reply. I didn’t know! The best I can do now is to say it has been a little of both.

Perhaps I am burying my head in the sand a bit…or not…but I choose to think that most people who think me an asshole do so because they disagree with what I say and do. Because most people disagree with what I say and do, I’m readily known as an asshole. I accept that.

I will have to digress from this topic and reenter the realm of Climate Change before you click away!

The author of the Op-Ed wants to know if “fighting climate change” is worth destroying or sacrificing “modern civilization.” With this comment, I have no fewer than three questions.

Question 1: In this article, outside of titles, the term “climate change” is used 7 times and all seven times it is in lower case letters. For those who may not know there is a difference between “Climate Change” and “climate change.” I am not alone when I say that Climate Change refers to the Al Gore variety of make-believe – a political creation for many sinister reasons, the main ones being profit, people control, and genocide.

When used in the context of natural climate change, I would stick with lower case. If, as a reader, you don’t know in what context the author is using this term, it makes it impossible to understand or to have a rational discussion. Distinct lines immediately become crossed and confusion takes over.

I will, for the sake of discussion, assume that the author, when he writes “climate change” and not “Climate Change” he is referring to the natural form of climate change.

Question 2: What does the author mean by “fighting?” The piece certainly lets us know those things Environmentalism is forcing civilization to do to “save the planet,” but how do you “fight” that? I guess you just write Op-Eds and express your dislike? If you don’t understand what is really going on, what’s to fight? God?

Question 3: What is “modern civilization?” Isn’t this too broad a term when discussing a more specific subject like “climate change,” or “Climate Change?” From my perspective, a whole bunch of this “modern civilization” I would like to see destroyed.

My real attempt here is not to try to ridicule the author. It’s to get readers to think beyond overused expressions and platitudes about the environmental, Environmentalism, climate change, and Climate Change.

The author writes of how environmentalists make statements about the climate and the environment in general and present their theories and rationale from the position that man is screwing everything up. Never, ever discussed in any of this is the most important part of all – that our Creator, who made all of this, is far greater than any of us, which includes Climate Change. Yahweh did create it all and that includes you and me as distinct, alpha dogs of the environment. In that plan is perfection. His perfection may not resemble our plans and that’s one of the biggest reasons nobody wants to discuss it. Sorry!

I’m not going to try to guess whether or not Yahweh’s Great Plan includes any kind of Climate Change. I am sure He has and will continue to instruct his angels on what to do about our climate that is always changing and that we have no control over and therefore cannot “fight.”

Also never brought up in discussions about climate change or even Climate Change, is the deliberate man-caused changes in our atmosphere, resulting in weather phenomenon, toxic poisoning of the populace, earthquakes, fires, etc. Ignorant people never look up and if you point it out to them they are not at all interested even though it is killing them. It’s easier to deny. This topic is unending and so I’ll leave it alone.

So, when someone asks if fighting climate change is worth anything, I have to say no. No, because climate change is Yahweh’s call and I can’t tell Him what to do, and, no, because Climate Change is a sinister, political plot that the people are being used to their deaths for. Join it if you wish and you will because you fail to recognize what’s really going on.

One thing is for certain. When someone asks if fighting climate change or Climate Change is worth it, is to admit and recognize that it actually does exist. I’m here to tell you that climate change is natural, that Climate Change is an evil hoax designed for profit and control and that technology, not the kind you think, is behind Climate Change.

Take the easy road and…

DON’T GO LOOK!

 

 

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Curtis Bill Enhances Antiquities Protections, Creates First Ever Tribally-Managed National Monument

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 9, 2018 – Today, the Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a legislative hearing on H.R. 4532, the “Shash Jaa National Monument and Indian Creek National Monument Act.” Introduced by Rep. John Curtis (R-UT), and cosponsored by every Member of the House of Representatives from Utah, the bill builds upon President Trump’s right-sizing of the Bears Ears National Monument (BENM) and creates the first tribally co-managed national monument in history.

While it is difficult to overstate how politicized the creation and management of our national monuments has become, I believe all sides of this debate share many common goals,” Rep. Curtis stated. “These goals include a high priority on protecting and preserving both antiquities and the natural beauty of this area, as well as maintaining traditional uses of the land.”

In in the waning days of office, President Obama unilaterally designated the BENM against the will of Utah’s elected leaders, local stakeholders and tribes.

Despite empty promises to the contrary, the original BENM proclamation did not bestow tribal co-management. Instead, the proclamation created a token advisory role for tribes and no legal or official decision making authority.

“There is no one who cares for the land more than we do, the local residents and native people of San Juan County. It is the people who live closest to the land that understand the land best and should have a voice in how lands are managed,” Member of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe Suzette Morris stressed.

Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT), described the Bears Ears Commission, the tribal advisory board established under the original BENM proclamation, as a scam.

“The Commission is a fraud, it’s a sham. They get to advise, but the advice can easily be rejected. Land managers have the ability to arbitrarily change things and there is nothing tribes can do about it,” Chairman Bishop argued.

Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (R-PA) questioned Ms. Morris on whether local tribes were consulted by the Obama administration prior to the BENM designation and whether tribal co-management was ever achieved. “No,” Morris answered. 

President Trump signed an Executive Order in April 2017, requiring a review of recent monument designations to determine whether they were consistent with the “original objectives” of the Antiquities Act.  The review asserted, among other conclusions, that BENM’s size was not the “smallest area compatible” with care of the objects requiring protection, as required under the Act, and that tribes did not have an “adequate role” in managing the monument.

On December 4, 2017, President Trump signed a proclamation to protect identified antiquities in the region with the creation of two new separate, more targeted monuments: the Shash Jáa National Monument and Indian Creek National Monument. To codify those actions and prevent future administrations from arbitrarily modifying the monument boundaries, congressional action is required.

“We now find ourselves with a reset and the opportunity to move forward with a legislative process for protecting this area,” Governor of Utah Gary Herbert stressed. “If we really care about protecting the antiquities and archeological artifacts… if we really care about giving native Americans co-management responsibility, it has to be done legislatively.”

“Without congressional action, Bears Ears, Shash Jaa and Indian Creed will be relegated to nothing more than political footballs being punted back and forth with each presidential adminstration. Nobody wins in that scenario – not the archeological resources, not the environment and certainly not the people of San Juan County,” Director of the Coalition for Self-Government in the West of the Sutherland Institute Matt Anderson stated.

H.R. 4532 codifies the newly-created monuments and establishes the Shash Jaa Tribal Management Council, made up of a minimum of four local tribal members, guaranteeing tribal input in management decisions.

H.R. 4532 will finally empower the voices who have been silenced in the debate, and those are the tribes of the local tribes who actually live in San Juan County,” Morris said.

The bill maintains the existing 1.35 million acre mineral withdrawal under the original BENM designation to “put to rest any suspicion that the monument was reduced in order to advance energy development,” Governor Herbert stated.

The bill also establishes the first-of-its-kind Archaeological Resources Protection Unit, a statutory assignment of additional law enforcement personnel, and additional federal dollars, for the exclusive protection of antiquities within monument boundaries.

Click here to view full witness testimony.

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Bill to Prevent Draconian Public Access Restrictions Under Wilderness Act Draws Praise

Press Release from the House Committee on Energy and Natural Resources:

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 7, 2017 –

Today, the Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a legislative hearing on four bills. Among those bills considered at the hearing, H.R. 1349, introduced by Subcommittee Chairman Tom McClintock (R-CA), would restore the original intent of the Wilderness Act and improve land access to disabled veterans, families and the elderly by clarifying that bicycles, strollers and wheelchairs are permitted in wilderness areas.

Congress enacted the Wilderness Act in 1964 to create a National Wilderness Preservation System that would “secure for the American people of present and future generations the benefits of an enduring resource of wilderness.” Generally, the law prohibits commercial activities and motorized uses in wilderness areas.

Non-motorized bicycles were allowed in wilderness areas from the inception of the Act, until 1977, when the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) reinterpreted the law to ban them.

“Congress meant to exclude roads, permanent infrastructure and motors, not human-powered visitors who leave no permanent trace, Ted Stroll, President of the Sustainable Trails Coalition, said. Thus, H.R. 1349 does not materially amend the Wilderness Act of 1964. Rather, it restores the Act to its original meaning.”

Rep. McClintock pressed the panel on how the bicycle ban was originally implemented: “So the ban was strictly imposed by an unelected bureaucrat, is that correct?,” McClintock asked“Yes,” Stroll responded.

Conservationists like Stroll and key legislative backers of the original law, including Senator Frank F. Church (D-ID), have criticized restrictive interpretations as contrary to the law’s intent.  “If Congress had intended that wilderness be administered in so stringent a manner, we would never have written the law as we did,” Church stated, following USFS’s 1977 interpretation.

At the time he signed the Wilderness Act, President Lyndon B. Johnson noted, “[For cyclists and others] we must have trails as well as highways.”

Nevertheless, under the prevailing interpretation, “bicycles, strollers, and any human-powered wheeled conveyance are banned in an area larger than all of California, for no environmental reason,” Stroll stated.

“[The predictable opposition to H.R. 1349] will come from the Wilderness industry, an enterprise comprising people with strong ideological opposition to human activity in public lands, commercial pack outfitters, and organizations that raise money by scaring people that Congress will abolish Wilderness or dilute it of all recognition,” Stroll added. The latter are almost certain to tell the gullible that H.R. 1349 is part of that ultimate goal.”

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Trump National Monument Reform Applauded by Free-Market Environmentalists

Press Release from the National Center for Public Policy Research:

“First Step on the Road to Undoing an Egregious Abuse of Power”

Repeal Antiquities Act to Protect Property Rights, Promote Economic Prosperity


Washington, DC 
– 
Environmental experts with the National Center for Public Policy Research applaud President Donald Trump’s order to scale back two Utah national monuments as a good kickoff in reforming abuse of the Antiquities Act. The National Center sent President Trump a coalition letter earlier this year noting that modern applications of the Act unconstitutionally create de facto wilderness areas and national parks prohibiting almost all activity on designated land.

“This is a first step on the road to undoing an egregious abuse of power that the Clinton, Bush and Obama Administrations exercised in designating millions of acres of federal land as national monuments. But it is just a first step. Obama alone designated national monuments in Oregon, California, Nevada and Maine as well as off the Atlantic Coast, and these should also be on the chopping block,” said National Center Senior Fellow Bonner Cohen, Ph.D. “Ultimately, the problem lies with the Antiquities Act itself. Originally enacted to protect Native American artifacts and sacred sites, it has been transformed into a land-use mechanism that blocks Americans’ access to their own natural resources. Since the Antiquities Act was passed in 1906, other laws have been enacted that protect Native American cultural and archeological sites. These other laws do not lend themselves to the abuse we have seen with the Antiquities Act.”

On December 4, President Trump ordered the size of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments to be dramatically scaled back. His action came after he asked the U.S. Department of the Interior earlier this year to review all monument designations. While the land remains under the control of the federal government, this order opens it up to more potential use by the public. These may not be the only monument designations reconsidered by the President.

“These designations really protected nothing. The lands were already owned by the federal government and carefully managed, regulated and well-protected by an army of federal agents,” said National Center Senior Fellow R.J. Smith. “The goal of the designations had been to convert multiple-use public lands into de facto national parks and wilderness areas, preventing traditional uses such as recreation, grazing and any other economic uses of natural resources. It usurped the authority of Congress to designate parks and wildernesses, and it disenfranchised the people of the affected states – especially those in rural counties and communities. Worse, it accelerated the War on the West – destroying the economic well-being of much of rural America while undermining the tax base of county and small town governments and turning thriving communities into ghost towns.”

In October, the National Center brought together almost 40 free-market organizations, trade associations, businesses, former federal officials and current lawmakers on a letter to President Trump that asked for comprehensive reform of the Antiquities Act and a rollback of national monument designations. It asked the Trump Administration to “deal more forcibly with the abuses that have plagued the program for decades” and “restor[e] integrity and transparency to a process that for too long has been lacking in both.”

“The Antiquities Act should be repealed,” added Dr. Cohen. “Meanwhile, we eagerly await President Trump’s next steps to restore the rule of law and remove Washington’s meddling hands from how our lands – public and private – are to be used.”

Smith said: “We applaud President Trump, and we hope he will continue to substantially downsize – or preferably eliminate – other national monument designations under review in Maine, New Mexico, California, Oregon and Nevada.”

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So, Is Katahdin Woods and Waters Now On The Chopping Block?

Now that’s a laugh!

It has been announced that President Trump, citing the intent of the Antiquities Act, has reduced the sizes of a couple of National Monuments in Utah. After examining the press release does this mean places like Maine’s Katahdin Woods and Waters is scheduled for the chopping block?

That’s not likely going to happen, but one has to wonder why in Utah and not in other places? Or, are there more to come? What’s on that land in Utah that is important enough for Trump to do this and not in more places?

Maybe the best place to start is at the beginning. Below is a copy of the Antiquities Act of 1906, signed into law by President Theodore Roosevelt.

~~~~~~~~

American Antiquities Act of 1906

16 USC 431-433

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That any person who shall appropriate, excavate, injure, or destroy any historic or prehistoric ruin or monument, or any object of antiquity, situated on lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States, without the permission of the Secretary of the Department of the Government having jurisdiction over the lands on which said antiquities are situated, shall, upon conviction, be fined in a sum of not more than five hundred dollars or be imprisoned for a period of not more than ninety days, or shall suffer both fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court.

Sec. 2. That the President of the United States is hereby authorized, in his discretion, to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments, and may reserve as a part thereof parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected: Provided, That when such objects are situated upon a tract covered by a bona fied unperfected claim or held in private ownership, the tract, or so much thereof as may be necessary for the proper care and management of the object, may be relinquished to the Government, and the Secretary of the Interior is hereby authorized to accept the relinquishment of such tracts in behalf of the Government of the United States.

Sec. 3. That permits for the examination of ruins, the excavation of archaeological sites, and the gathering of objects of antiquity upon the lands under their respective jurisdictions may be granted by the Secretaries of the Interior, Agriculture, and War to institutions which the may deem properly qualified to conduct such examination, excavation, or gathering, subject to such rules and regulation as they may prescribe: Provided, That the examinations, excavations, and gatherings are undertaken for the benefit of reputable museums, universities, colleges, or other recognized scientific or educational institutions, with a view to increasing the knowledge of such objects, and that the gatherings shall be made for permanent preservation in public museums.

Sec. 4. That the Secretaries of the Departments aforesaid shall make and publish from time to time uniform rules and regulations for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act.

Approved, June 8, 1906 

[Emboldening Added]

Section 1, clearly states that the intent of the Act is to protect “historic or prehistoric ruin or monument, or any object of antiquity.” These artifacts are those found on Federal Land and/or private lands that the private landowner has or will “relinquished to the Government.”

These so-called “antiquities” that needed protection, at the time of the creation of this act, were items that someone could,  “…appropriate, excavate, injure, or destroy any historic or prehistoric ruin or monument, or any object of antiquity.” The abuse that has happened in this regard wonders how someone might “appropriate, excavate, injure, or destroy” a view or a small river.

With that in mind, looking at Section 2, an honest examination of the Katahdin Woods and Waters has to bring forth the question as to what, precisely sits on the 87,563 acres of donated land that qualifies as, “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest.”

If President Trump’s motivating factor for reducing the National Monuments in Utah was to limit the scope of land designated as protecting “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest,” and there are no real “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest” found at the Katahdin Woods and Waters site, should the president remove National Monument designation from that site and simply turn the land, given by Roxanne Quimby, over to management by the Bureau of Land Management or the U.S. Forest Service?

Argument will always be made as to the value-weighted perspective of what the Katahdin Woods and Waters has to offer that qualifies as worthy of protection. The only view of anything worthwhile is of Mt. Katahdin and that can be seen in many places throughout the region. Other than that everything else in the new park can be found commonly in many places across Maine and other states.

Removing designation will never happen but the point should be made that abuse of the Antiquities Act has repercussions, many of which will not be felt at the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument until sometime into the future. It is very little this administration can do that would justify a move to remove the entire national monument designation.

So Mainers are stuck with what there is.

 

 

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Panel: Bipartisan Bills Enhance ESA Protections, Boost Hydropower Reliability

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 12, 2017 –

Today, the Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans held a legislative hearing on H.R. 3144 (Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-WA) and H.R. 3916 (Rep. Ken Calvert, R-CA), the “Federally Integrated Species Health Act” or “FISH Act,” bills to improve the recovery of Endangered Species Act (ESA) listed fish while providing certainty for water and power users.

Clearly, the ESA process is broken and the status quo isn’t working for species, farmers and ranchers and rural communities that depend on our natural resources. Under the status quo, American taxpayers and ratepayers in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere in the West spend literally billions of dollars each year resulting from conflicting or duplicative federal regulatory or judicial edicts under the guise of the ESA. These bills represent bipartisan, pragmatic solutions,” Subcommittee Chairman Doug Lamborn (R-CO) said.

The current hydropower system along the Columbia-Snake Rivers is held hostage to litigation and unpredictable federal rulings that could impose tens of millions of dollars on taxpayers and Pacific Northwest ratepayers with little additional benefit to endangered salmon. H.R. 3144 creates a more reliable and cost-efficient regulatory framework by providing federal agencies that operate Northwest hydropower dams with statutory clarity in the enforcement of the ESA, in line with a collaborative plan deemed scientifically sound by the previous two administrations, several states, tribes, utilities, ports and other stakeholders.

The dams of the Columbia-Snake River system are multipurpose in that they provide hydropower, flood control, navigation, irrigated agriculture and recreation. The benefits of the dams cannot be measured by megawatts alone but in the overall value they provide the region,” United Power Trades Organization President Jack Heffling stated. “[Keeping the current federal plan] continues the programs that have proven extremely successful in migrating fish survival.”

“Eighty percent of PNGC’s power supply comes from the Bonneville Power Administration… PNGC values the clean, carbon free, flexible hydropower resources that BPA provides,” PNGC Power President and CEO Beth Looney stated“If BPA’s rates continue to climb at their current trajectory, they will likely not be competitive with alternative power supply choices in the region at that time… as an electric cooperative, we have a responsibility to supply power to our members at an affordable rate whether that comes from Bonneville or elsewhere.”

The four dams along the Snake River produce enough renewable energy to power 1.8 million homes annually or the equivalent of two nuclear, three coal-fired or six gas-fired power plants.

Acting Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation Alan Mikkelsen expressed support to reduce litigation and refocus resources on the current operation plan while working towards “a quality long term [Federal Columbia River Power] System solution.”

The need to balance the ongoing operations of the [Federal Columbia River Power] System and achieving compliance with environmental laws is what H.R. 3144 seeks to achieve,” Mikkelsen added.

H.R. 3916, a concept supported by President Obama in 2011,  also eliminates redundancies and regulatory confusion across federal agencies related to ESA enforcement.

H.R. 3916  is [an] important step in reducing wasted time and money and represents a practical, common-sense change… that we strongly support,” Executive Director of the Family Farm Alliance Dan Keppen stated. The FISH Act provides an opportunity to enhance protections to threatened and endangered species by improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the federal government’s approach to species protection through better decision-making.

[SOURCE]

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