Group says 3.2 million-acre preserve
would aid region as Acadia boosts coast
FORT KENT, Maine — There is little chance the forests and wild lands of northern Maine can ever be returned to their pristine state, but a group of conservationists sees no reason they can’t be at least partially restored and protected for generations to come.
RESTORE: The North Woods has advocated the formation of a multimillion-acre park or preserve in north central Maine since 1994, and on Friday the group’s director discussed the plan with students, faculty and guests at the University of Maine at Fort Kent.
“I can’t see another place in the United States where we could even be having this discussion,” said Jym St. Pierre, RESTORE director. “We are talking about 3 million-plus acres that could be acquired without disrupting people or communities.”
The area in question has long been the center of timber and logging operations in Maine going back to the early to mid-1800s when lumber from the great northern forest produced enough raw material to help Bangor become the lumber capital of the world.
Toward the middle and end of that century, the recreational value of the vast tracts of forests began to attract the likes of Henry David Thoreau and later Theodore Roosevelt, with the railroads billing it “America’s wilderness playground.”
Click in the link for the rest of today’s story by Julia Bayly in the Bangor Daily News.