Stories in Maine

It's Time to Advance Maine's Climate Goals

LD 1881 will advance renewable energy goals while also protecting farms, forests and natural landscapes

Two workers in hard hats and yellow jackets walk beneath solar panels with the sun peeking out.
Solar Power Laura Crane and a Fuller Star employee walking through the array of solar panels at the Fuller Star plant in Lancaster, California. © Dave Lauridsen

"As Maine goes, so goes the nation."

It is increasingly clear that we must transition to renewable energy sources to avoid the worst effects of climate change. In Maine, we have a unique opportunity to lead the way by balancing renewable energy development with protection of our farms, forests, and natural landscapes.

The Maine Legislature is currently considering a bill — LD 1881 — which would help our state take critical steps toward a more sustainable future. LD 1881 deserves our support and the Maine Legislature should pass it now!

LD 1881: Renewable Energy Mitigation

This bill provides an opportunity to balance the much-needed rapid deployment of renewable energy in Maine with the protection of the farms, forests, and natural resources that are the backbone of our state’s economy.

Read the full text of LD 1881 (PDF).

We must encourage development to avoid and minimize impacts as much as possible, and to mitigate any impacts that remain.

In Maine, compensatory mitigation programs already play a valuable role in protecting natural resources, like wetlands. By expanding this approach to include renewable energy development, green energy projects can mitigate their impact on unique ecosystems and wildlife. These programs also create jobs in restoration and conservation, enhance the overall ecological health of the region, and preserve natural resources for future generations.

LD 1881 would help strike this essential balance.

It ensures that Mainers benefit from cleaner energy and encourages renewable energy developers to identify the best, lowest-impact locations for their projects. It provides additional predictability by offering a pathway to mitigate any impacts that can’t be avoided or minimized. And those mitigation dollars can be used to support additional resource protection in other critical areas of our state, meaning renewable energy development serves yet another important environmental role.

This balanced, thoughtful approach to renewable energy development is widely supported by the public.

A recent poll commissioned by The Nature Conservancy (March 2023) showed that 70 percent of Mainers support policy requiring renewable energy developers to pay a fee to compensate for those impacts to highly valued lands, and use the revenue to conserve, restore, or protect lands in Maine. Only 24 percent oppose such a policy.

Please join the following organizations in supporting LD 1881:

A collection of partner logos.
Partners Joining together to support climate action. © TNC
The sun sits low on the horizon over a green and yellow meadow leading up to a green mountain range.
Maine's Future We have a unique opportunity to lead the way by incentivizing renewable energy projects that have a low impact on the environment. © Jerry and Marcy Monkman/EcoPhotography