Disrespectful treatment

For the past 25 years, we have owned the shorefront property directly across Route 1 from the Belfast Water District where Nordic Aquafarms is now hoping to build its salmon farm.

We were recently informed by the legal team of Upstream Watch that we also owned the intertidal zone in front of the three neighboring properties, which we did not know. A former owner of our house had sold off the neighboring lots in the 1940s, specifically excluding the intertidal zones in those deeds, retaining those with her property.

This meant that the intertidal zone in front of the Eckrote property, which Nordic was claiming title, right and interest to in its application to the Bureau of Parks and Lands, is land that in our deed shows the title, right and interest to be ours.

When this information became public, Marianne Naess made the following statement on the Nordic Facebook page… “(Upstream Watch has) revealed that some shoreline owners do not own their intertidal, which may be an unpleasant surprise to some owners. We withheld our surveys when we became aware of this situation some months back — it was not our role to reveal such sensitive information to community and owners.”

It would be much more than an “unpleasant surprise” to us if we were to learn in the future that Nordic had put its pipes over land they knew was ours without getting legal consent from us.

Marianne Naess is saying that Nordic Aquafarms knew about our ownership when they submitted their application to the Bureau of Parks and Lands to lay their pipes across this intertidal zone. In fact, Carol DiBello, submerged lands coordinator for the state Bureau of Parks and Lands, gave tentative approval to the application until Upstream Watch submitted the surveys and deeds that were factual. Carol DiBello has subsequently asked Nordic to provide proof of title, right and interest, which they do not have.

In her Free Press interview with reporter Ethan Andrews, Ms. Naess said, “It would have been nice if they (meaning us) talked to us first. We have an open door policy.” We think it would have been nice (and the ethical thing to do) if Nordic Aquafarms had talked with us, some months back, when their surveys showed them that we owned the land where they planned to lay their pipes.

Instead, they went ahead with their plans and made application to the Bureau of Parks and Lands as if they had owner consent to cross that land.

This treatment feels disrespectful to us and not what we would expect from a business that wants to be a good neighbor.

Jeffrey Mabee and Judith Grace


Caught in a lie

At a recent meeting of the Arctic Council, made up of the eight countries that comprise the Arctic, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo described that rapidly warming region as a land of “opportunity and abundance.” He cited its untapped reserves of oil, gas, uranium, gold, fishing and rare earth minerals, which, in addition to the opening up of new shipping routes — a new Suez Canal — will create “exciting new opportunities” for economic growth. At Pompeo’s insistence, the council’s final report excluded any mention of climate change.

Only six months ago Mr. Trump refused to comment about the recently released Climate Science Special Report culminating three years’ research by myriad federal agencies and mandated by the Global Change Research Act of 1990. He’d seen it, he said, but he didn’t believe it.

This president supports and reiterates the lie that climate change doesn’t threaten the planet and that people have little to do with it. His reasons for doing so are obvious — a new frontier is on the horizon, one ripe for exploitation.

Despite his “pro-life” mantra, Mr. Trump is overseeing a sixth extinction of species; despite the efforts of communities throughout Maine organizing to lessen our carbon footprints, the commander-in-chief works to negate those efforts — MDI’s A Climate to Thrive, Maine Sierra Club’s climate action teams, all of which strive to act locally and think globally.

Maine Sierra Club’s recent climate change conference, “Building Thriving Communities,” provided communities with ideas for moving forward toward 100% sustainable clean, renewable energy, but this administration promotes pollution as patriotism. Mr. Trump even sued California (a blue state) for setting strict air pollution standards.

The president is obviously exploiting the planet for all its worth and celebrates the climate change he calls a hoax. Mike Pompeo’s words should be enough to indict Mr. Trump for obstructing planetary justice.

Beverly Roxby


Observations from an alien

What if the Nordic Aquatic fish farm used all the money it wants to spend here in Belfast and instead invested it in bringing back what the real salmon needs to live its life to the fullest and thus feed many more future generations in the process.

Before you decide to give the corporate “Big Bucks, happy jobs, feed some wealthy people while we run out” our most precious gift and resource!

I urge the Belfast City Council and all of you “We, the People,” to read the book “Earth Democracy” by Vandana Shiva, and especially the chapter, ”Living Democracies.”

You owe it to your children and your next seven generations, and then make an informed decision about whether or not Belfast wants to be the next salmon casualty.

Do we truly think we have a chance feeding the next seven generations with mass-produced fish, while running out of water?

It is telling that the Nordic Aquatic fish farm has managed to divide the city into "U$," the ones who want this progress, vs “Them,” the libtards or whatever you call the ones against such catastrophic action.

We live in this happy bubble that life will continue as it does and climate change, nor any other natural or financial calamity will befall us.

History has taught many that one cannot trust “Men with big buck$ coming in to save the world and mostly themselves,” while you are left holding the pollution and waste.

We are promised jobs with benefits, livable wages, great retirement and the whole panacea of well-being into this happy fish future.

Yet, when that worker falls ill, or becomes disabled, he/she has no income, no help, no food, definitely not salmon, no nothing but becoming a burden on society and thus needs to be eliminated into homelessness and into our for-profit prison system.

Meanwhile our city does not offer many livable rental housing, so where will all these extra jobs people live? According to the news we have a very low unemployment rate, many local businesses can barely find enough workers, and one thinks $15 per hour is a livable wage which after paying taxes still leaves one hopelessly poor and unable to feed, house or educate a child with.

Will all these problems be magically solved with the property tax reductions by the Nordic fish farm glory?

Personally, it should not matter to me; I am your basic from very far away resident-alien. I am “allowed” to work and pay a lot more taxes then many 1%ers do.

I do not vote, have no children living here and will, thank heavens, never have grandchildren to worry about, but I do care about the hell we so carelessly create all over the world, including here, for resources!

It might be time to caution and question, unless we truly enjoy mass-produced manipulated food and mass extinction, including perhaps our own.

Ivy Lobato


Need not stoop so low

In a letter to this paper published May 9, Diane Braybrook writes: “The anti-Nordic push started out as a personal abutment issue which extended to walking trails and green space….”

This is false and I think it shows that Diane herself is new to the pro-Nordic point of view. Some of the first concerns raised were about the overall environmental impact, and the enormous size of the proposed Nordic salmon factory.

For instance, the entire Maine lobster industry is just a bit less than twice the size (measured by pounds produced) of the proposed Nordic salmon factory. Our wild lobster industry provides about 4,000 jobs in Maine, according to a recent study by Colby College. Compare this to 100 jobs expected at the Nordic salmon factory proposed for Belfast.

By every measure, the Nordic proposal for Belfast is environmentally unsound. One measure: 45 gallons of effluent to be released into Belfast's sheltered bay, for every pound of salmon that would be produced. Sixty-two million pounds multiplied by 45 means 2.8 billion gallons of treated sewage into the bay, every 12 months.

Another measure: According to Erik Heim, the proposed Nordic factory for Belfast would consume approximately as much electricity as 10,400 single-family homes. Mr. Heim has stated at several public meetings that if the project were to include 20 acres of rooftop solar panels, the power produced would be enough to offset between 6% and 10% of the power the proposed factory would use.

If 20 acres of solar panels equals 6% of the power needed, then 333.3 acres would be needed to produce all the power the factory would need. Enough, according to solar industry calculations, to offset all the power used by 10,400 single-family homes.

It is my opinion that costs such as these are an outrageous price to pay for the chemically colored flesh of the sickly salmon that would be produced and harvested at the proposed factory. Thirty thousand such fish would need to be “harvested” every working day of the year to achieve the stated goal of producing 62 million pounds of fish annually.

Nordic's proposed factory is not right for Belfast, not right for our suffering earth, and, it is completely unnecessary. We need not stoop so low to feed ourselves.

George Maendel


Longley retirement

In announcing my judicial retirement, first and foremost, I wish to thank the citizens of Waldo County for your constant support. I have been honored to serve as your probate judge these past 15 years.

With your steady support and encouragement, we have been able to build not only a well-run and well-organized, quality judicial system, but also one with well-established, family-friendly innovations.

With all now well in place, I consider this an opportune time, also because of upcoming changes. One is the court’s exciting move upstairs into the former District Court’s spaces. Another is the court’s move into a new statewide legal probate code.

In short, with your steady support, we have built a family-friendly probate court. These quality improvements are now well in place for our move upstairs and into a new code. In turn, we have the opportune time for the next judge to begin anew and take our probate system to the next level.

Again, I sincerely thank the citizens of Waldo County for all your support. I have been honored to serve you.

Susan W. Longley, Esq.


Live and let live

A letter last week (May 9), "Protecting out children," raises some concerns in my mind.

Since Elaine Bielenberg, Mike and Geoff Bird, Phyllis Coelho and Larry Litchfield, Carol Gater, Don and Lynn Hoenig, Judy Judkins, Mary and Bob Rackmales, and David Smith and Linda Garson Smith, Belfast; Johnna Brazier, Islesboro; Susan Conard, Chris Corson and Alexia Morgan, Kirk Earl, Bob Fargey and Trudy Miller, Steve and Shelley Fein, Deirdre Good and Julian Sheffield, Pat Meisner, and the Rev. Dr. Duncan Newcomer, Northport; Jan Geller, Searsmont; Jeff Smith, Swanville; Barbara Gould and Mike Ray, and John and Kathy Williams, Lincolnville, don't have much faith in vaccinations, then why do they all want everyone to follow in their footsteps?

Perhaps they have never heard or been taught "live and let live." No one is saying they can't have all the vaccinations they want, but why let their fears try to force me or someone else into doing something against our own conscience?

Ruth Treworgy