Archives for Sears Island

Coastal Conversations 4/27/18

Producer/Host: Natalie Springuel
Studio Engineer: Amy Browne

Sears Island: Past, Present, and Future

What is the history of Sears Island, starting from the Wabanaki, into the colonial era and intop the recent past?
Sears Island’s history of multiple industrial development proposals and its eventual conservation.
What is Friends of Sears Island, the legal management entity, doing to engage the public on the island?

Susan White, President, Friends of Sears Island
Rolf Olsen, VP, Friends of Sears Island
Stephen Miller, Isleboro Islands Trust
Ashly Megquire, Outreach coordinator, Friends of Sears Island

RadioActive 4/02/09

Producers/Hosts: Amy Browne & Meredith DeFrancesco

Segment 1: Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have scathing criticism of the Maine Department of Transportation’s plan to start a federal Umbrella Wetlands Mitigation Bank on Sears Island— and they have made their concerns known to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers who is currently considering MeDOT’s proposal. We talk with Kyla Bennett, Director of the New England branch of PEER, to get the details. FMI:

Segment 2: Rob Brown, Executive Director of Opportunity Maine, talks about LD 1181, the “Green Jobs, Green Savings bill”, a proposal to create jobs and energy efficiency in Maine. Opportunity Maine authored the bill, it was sponsored by Rep. Seth Berry (Bowdoinham), and it has drawn an out-pouring of support from labor activists, environmentalists, students and others in recent public hearings. FMI:

RadioActive 3/26/09

Producers/Hosts: Amy Browne & Meredith DeFrancesco
Segment 1: Local workers and union members speak out in support of the Employee Free Trade Act (EFCA)
Segment 2: Army Corps of Engineers Public Meeting tonight in Searsport. At stake: whether “Umbrella Wetlands Mitigation” will allow the Maine Dept of Transportation to build a port on Sears Island. Ron Huber joins us to talk about that issue, and also the lawsuit he recently filed against the state in hopes of protecting the island.
FMI: Ron Huber, 207-691-7485,,
Comments may be sent to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, Regulatory Division, Attn: Ruth Ladd, 696 Virginia Rd., Concord, MA 01742-2751 or 800-343-4789 or (Reference Proposal File NAE-2008-1703)

RadioActive 11/20/08

Producers/Hosts: Amy Browne and Meredith DeFrancesco

Segment 1:We talk with Jim Harney, a well-known photojournalist and international social justice activist.  Jim is terminally ill, but continues to use his time and energy to speak out about important issues–today he reflects on the “School of the Americas” aka “The School of the Assassins” at Ft. Benning, GA.   FMI:;,

Segment2: The Army Corps of Engineers will hold a public meeting in Searsport on December 1st (at 3p.m. at the Union Hall) to address the Maine Department of Transportation’s proposal for a wetland mitigation bank —- a proposal that has serious potential ramifications for Sears Island.  Jody Spear has been working on the issue and will join us later in the program to tell us more.  FMI: and select “Regulatory/Permitting”, then “Weekly Public Notices”, also

RadioActive 6/5/08

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

Topic:  A continuation of the call-in show special this morning on the future of Sears Island, allowing callers who couldn’t get through this morning a chance to call in again.

WERU Special: The Future of Sears Island 6/5/08

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

Topic:  Sears Island, a 941-acre undeveloped island in Penobscot Bay, has been the focus of various development schemes for decades—and for decades there have been people who have fought to preserve the island.   But each battle ended with the long-term fate of the island still undecided.  That may all be about to change.

The Maine Department of Transportation owns the island and they have never lost sight of their goal to develop at least part of it, for a deep water shipping port.  Knowing that there would be strong opposition to such a plan, the Baldacci administration pulled together a group of stakeholders back in 2006 and asked them to come up with recommendations about possible uses for the island– by consensus.    Last year the group, called the Sears Island Planning Initiative, released a Consensus Agreement  that calls for an easement of 600 acres that will be set aside for light recreational, educational, and conservation facilities and uses, and reserves 341 acres on the west side of the island for potential port development.   A smaller committee, the Joint Use Planning Committee, has been meeting since last year to figure out the boundaries of the 2 areas and other details.

The people we have joining us in the studio today have differing opinions about the Consensus Agreement.   Should it be seen as a victory that permanently protected  2/3rds of the island or a sell-out of the other 3rd?

Guests:  Ken Cline, Maine Chapter of the Sierra Club; Peter Tabor and Harlan McLaughlin of Fair Play for Sears Island

Call in show

NOTE:  We’ll take up this topic again, and try to take some of the calls that didn’t get through this morning, on RadioActive this afternoon from 4-4:30p.m.