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South Portland proposal threatens critical infrastructure
The Maine Wire
The city of South Portland will soon vote on a controversial environmental ordinance so broadly written as to cause the shutdown of critical infrastructure in one of New England's largest ports. Supporters of the Waterfront Protection Ordinance submitted petition signatures to the city in June, and, following the city council's 5-1 vote against implementing the ordinance, council members voted unanimously to send the measure to voters this November.
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Member Updates



Priority Real Estate Group receives award for 'Project of the Year'
MEMA
Commercial real estate development company Priority Real Estate Group of Topsham was chosen as the recipient of the "Project of the Year" for Rusty's Market in Topsham, from the Maine Association of Planners for 2013. The honor was presented to Jim Howard, CEO/president of Priority Real Estate Group, at the MAP Annual Meeting in Belfast on June 21. The winner was chosen for the successful economic and community development of a neighborhood concept convenience store/farm stand. The store opened in November 2012, continuing a 40 year tradition of its predecessor, Russell "Rusty" Rancourt, with many updates and improvements. Rusty can still be found working the grille for long time customers and new friends as well.
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Legislative Updates



State splits natural-gas contract; Maine Natural Gas gets lion's share
Kennebec Journal
The two companies competing to provide natural gas distribution to state-owned buildings in central Maine split the awards for the projects, with Maine Natural Gas receiving a larger share of the state's business. Maine Natural Gas bid on 25 of 30 projects and received awards for 19 of them, including the four high-use buildings identified in the request for proposals: The Augusta Mental Health Institute power house, Cross State Office Building, Riverview Psychiatric Center and the Department of Health & Human Services main office. The awards total $965,464.
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Industry Headlines



A few thoughts on winter and US natural gas
Platts
The August publication of the Farmer's Almanac's forecast of a Snowmageddon notwithstanding, early indications are for an average — read: Cold — winter. That has always meant price spikes in the daily gas markets, but could this year be the one in which the New York market sits the insanity out?
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Ethanol group firing back at critics
NACS
Ethanol supporters have launched a multimillion-dollar nationwide advertising campaign, countering a push by oil companies that the group has described as misleading, the Des Moines Register reports. The trade association Growth Energy is behind the advertising blitz, titled "You're no dummy. Don't let the oil industry treat you like one," which will run on cable news networks and in print and radio. The campaign features a ventriloquist and his dummy who counter some of Big Oil's arguments against renewable fuels.
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LAST WEEK'S MOST POPULAR ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    US energy independence is about freedom (Hays Post)
Crude oil prices reach 18-month high (The Washington Post)
Residents, workers evacuate from site of oil rig explosion (Victoria Advocate)
TransCanada Keystone wins right to cross Texas family farm (Bloomberg News)
Oil workers in public outcry over helo safety record (Aviation Week)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


Will natural gas alleviate Maine's energy woes?
Mainebiz
When natural gas from a pipeline starts flowing into UPM Madison's heating furnaces late this year, it will be a fuel conversion several decades in the making and a move General Manager Russ Drechsel expects will boost the paper mill's competitiveness.
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Why Obama just named Sweden as a model for energy policy
Think Progress
During a press conference with Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, President Barack Obama was asked what the United States could learn from Sweden. His first thought was sustainable energy development. Sweden gets most of its electricity from hydroelectric and nuclear power, dating from investments in the 1950s and 1960s. Renewable energy — mainly wind — has also been on the rise, such that right now, over 47 percent of all energy consumed in Sweden comes from renewable sources. The vast majority of the electricity mix comes from renewables and nuclear.
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New Hampshire AG sues Shell to recover $2.4 million
CSP Daily News
New Hampshire Attorney General Joseph Foster said that his office has filed a lawsuit against Shell Oil Co. The petition filed in Merrimack County Superior Court alleges that over the past 25 years, the state's Oil Discharge & Disposal Cleanup Fund, paid more than $2.4 million for cleanups at Shell's historically owned sites, cleanups for which Shell should have been financially responsible under Mew Hampshire state law. The suit is part of a "nationwide array of claims in a series of settlements worth more than $414 million," court documents said.
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Safety Updates



West Bath spill exemplifies how quickly costs mount
Portland Press Herald
Dusk was approaching as Jerrie Williams pulled up her gravel driveway in late July and noticed what looked like water on the ground. Maybe someone had been washing a car, she thought. Then the petroleum smell hit her. In the failing light, she realized that the kerosene tank behind her house had fallen over. When her husband and friends were unable to right the tank, Williams called the fire department. First responders contacted the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, but not before 225 gallons of fuel soaked into the ground.
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Convenience Stores



Lawmakers target energy drinks
NACS
Energy drink manufacturers are back on the hot seat as a trio of Democratic senators take on what they deem is an unhealthy and unsafe product, the Washington Post reports. Sens. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., Edward Markey, D-Mass. and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., refer to themselves as "veterans of the tobacco wars" for their work on banning smoking on airplanes and successfully suing the industry for not being honest with the public about smoking's harmful effects.
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