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Casco Bay Matters Speaker Series

Casco Bay Matters Speaker Series

We host periodic presentations and panel discussions on issues of current concern though our Casco Bay Matters series, which are open to the public.

The purpose of a Casco Bay Matters is to provide an opportunity for concerned citizens and for legislators (especially local and state officials) to learn about and discuss issues of importance to protecting the water quality of Casco Bay. These programs are held at various venues such as colleges, libraries, and other facilities. The format varies depending on the issue.  We may offer a speaker or a panel to introduce a topic that will lead to further discussion, during and after the event. We want people leave with an awareness of the problem and many possible solutions to think about. We don’t feel it is necessary to offer a single “correct” solution but to be thinking about what they can do about it.

It is another way that Friends of Casco Bay continues to be proactive in addressing environmental issues that impact the Bay, as we have done with our BayScaping initiative, with sewage discharges by recreational boats, and with forums such as Casco Bay Is at Risk in 2014. There, a panel discussed threats to Casco Bay’s ecosystem from acidifying coastlines, invading green crabs, dwindling clam populations, and disappearing nurseries of the sea, all issues that scientists and legislators are working to address.

We have found that leading such community discussions can launch efforts that change pollution laws or practices. A forum we held in 2002 on Pollution Solutions to Cruise Ship Discharges led to state legislators enacting a law to prohibit the discharge of gray water (from large passenger vessels’ sinks and galleys) in Maine marine waters and to the EPA designating Casco Bay as a No Discharge Area, which prevents large ships from releasing vessel sewage within three miles of shore. Even as Portland has become one the most popular cruise ship destinations, with about 100 ship visits each year, we are the most protected harbor in the nation from cruise ship pollution.

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Cover photo: Photograph by Kevin Morris

A New Way to Volunteer: Measure the Color of Casco Bay

June 7, 2018

From Homer’s “wine dark seas” to David Attenborough’s “Blue Planet,” the color of the ocean has held our fascination throughout the ages. People often consider blue water as a sign of a healthy ocean and dirty-brown water to indicate polluted water. Turns out, color is a valuable indicator of the… Read more

Casco Bay begins in your backyard

April 27, 2018

Friends of Casco Bay has been a strong advocate for municipal ordinances to reduce the use of lawn care chemicals. As the grass turns green, we are celebrating a series of milestones in our effort to protect the Bay from pesticides and fertilizers: The City of South Portland Pesticide Use… Read more

Wild and Scenic Film Festival

April 1, 2018

We look forward to seeing you at our 11th Annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival!

Save the Date for 2018’s Film Fest: Saturday, November 3, 2018 Read more

Plastics Pollution in Casco Bay

March 29, 2018

The good news is that fewer discarded plastic bags have been showing up in our coastal cleanups lately; however, plastic litter we cannot see continues to worry us. As the group that protects the health of our coastal waters, Friends of Casco Bay felt it was our duty to see… Read more

Friends of Casco Bay Testimony in Opposition to LD 1853: An Act To Ensure the Safe and Consistent Regulation of Pesticides throughout the State by Providing Exemptions to Municipal Ordinances That Regulate Pesticides

March 19, 2018

March 21, 2018 Senator Paul Davis Representative Danny Martin State and Local Government Committee c/o Legislative Information Office 100 State House Station Augusta, ME 04333 Re: Friends of Casco Bay Testimony in Opposition to LD 1853: An Act To Ensure the Safe and Consistent Regulation of Pesticides throughout the State… Read more

Ivy Frignoca, Casco Baykeeper

Opposing the 2019-2024 Draft Proposed National Oil and Gas Leasing Program

February 26, 2018

Ms. Kelly Hammerle, Chief National Oil and Gas Leasing Program Development and Coordination Branch Leasing Division, Office of Strategic Resources, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) 45600 Woodland Road Sterling, VA 20166-9216 February 26, 2018 Re: Docket ID: BOEM-2017-0074: Comments opposing the 2019-2024 Draft Proposed National Oil and Gas Leasing… Read more