Save Graham Lake, Maine

Save Graham Lake, Maine

Started
September 7, 2022
Signatures: 538Next Goal: 1,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by John Schratwieser

Dear Congressman Golden

We are a group of residents in your district that live or are very involved with Graham Lake which is located primarily in Mariaville, Otis, Waltham, Fletchers Landing & Ellsworth., in Hancock County We have a Facebook page called Graham Lake and Upper Union River Community and we currently have over 250 members. This group was created to communicate information about Graham Lake & the Upper Union River. I do not know if you are familiar with the issues with Graham Lake and the owner of its Dam Brookfield Renewable. For the past few years we have been experiencing devastating drawdowns of the lakes water level to provide water to the power generating dam in Ellsworth. Brookfield was denied their relicencing a few years ago due to these drawdowns and their water clarity issues for Graham Lake! They are currently in court fighting their denial of both the relicencing and the water clarity certification. They are allowed to operate under the old licence parameters until a resolution is found. FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has allowed this but has also stated that in order for them to get a renewal they will need to limit the amount that Graham Lake can be drawn down. Currently the lake can go from a maximum of about 104.5 feet down to 94.6 feet. The new requirement would be from 104 to 100 feet approximately. Basically a maximum drop of 4 feet. FERC and Maine DEP also feel that this would greatly improve the water quality issues. It has also been requested that Brookfield is to install a fish ladder at both dam sites for various forms of fish to be able to travel up and down the Union River system. 

      Here is our issue, Brookfield has again drawn down Graham lake to the current level of 97.52 feet and it has been continuously dropping since June 2022! This is creating a major environmental impact on the lake. Most shorefront owners now have hundreds of feet of exposed Lake bed with no water! Freshwater mussels are dying off in the thousands if not more. Aquatic eggs from fish, frogs and other wildlife have been completely devastated, waterfowl and our beutiful American Bald Eagles are literally flying all day trying to find fish to consume but are having difficulty because the fish are either dead or have moved to deeper water in order to survive! Aquatic plant life has also been devastated and killed off and in its place grasses are growing on the exposed portions of the lake bed! This issue has also brought great stress on the residents and your constituents. We can not enjoy Graham lake as we want to and what we pay taxes for as shorefront owners! Many residents have pulled their boats out weeks ago because their docks and shoreline has no water! I literally have to walk out hundreds of feet to reach the water when normally the lake is 40 ft to my home! We do not see how everyone seems to have a blind eye to this situation? We are requesting that yourself and others please look into this issue and help us to find a resolution that will work for the environment, the wildlife, the residents, the state of Maine and Brookfield Renewable! Please feel free to visit our Facebook page, contact one of our administrators,  and see and read how others feel about this issue!We hope that we can discuss this further with you.

Yours truly,

Concerned Graham Lake residents

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Signatures: 538Next Goal: 1,000
Support now