By Brooks Winner / Island Institute, Rockland Energy Committee

Do you have one of those leaky homes? If so, the Rockland Energy Committee’s Weatherize Rockland initiative can help you. Weatherize Rockland is helping local residents sign up for energy assessments, air sealing, insulation, and other energy services at discounts of up to 95%. Here are five reasons to sign up, or partner with home performance agencies in your area, to save money and make your home more energy efficient year round.


January 5, 2017


Commercial Currents: Getting online and direct marketing

It can be difficult for business owners to find time to think of creative ways to market their business, but taking advantage of existing online marketing and advertising resources can be a time-efficient and effective way to promote and grow your business.

Finding a place on Swan's Island

Swan’s Island is quiet, but it is a quiet I have grown to cherish. The Maine coast is cold, but in that coldness there is so much beauty and emotion. And I have spent a lot of time alone, but have only a few times felt lonely.

By Edward D. Murphy / Portland Press Herald

The waters off Chebeague Island will be even greener than usual this winter.

Shearwater Ventures is moving in, joining another company, Portland-based Ocean Approved, in growing and harvesting seaweed in Casco Bay.

Nathan Johnson, who started Shearwater last year, just signed a state lease on nearly 4 acres of seabed. Johnson intends to grow sugar kelp, his foray into the $5 billion worldwide kelp industry.

Kelp farm operated by Ocean Approved off of Chebeague Island

Application Window Opens for Aquaculture Business Development

Have you ever thought about gaining a new source of income through growing mussels, oysters or seaweed? Now is a great time to launch your small-scale aquaculture business. Through our Aquaculture Business Development (ABD) program, the Island Institute is working to help fishermen and people from fishing communities diversify into shellfish or seaweed aquaculture.

By Phil Crossman / Village Soup

On Friday, December 9th, the Island Institute co-hosted GrowSmart Maine's December Smart Growth Forum, “Sea Level Rise: Practical Tools and Community Implementation,” at our Rockland offices. In this community contributed piece, Phil Crossman, a Vinalhaven resident and selectmen, offers a recap of the event. For more information, including speaker presentations, visit the GrowSmart Maine event page.


December 15, 2016

Small business owner? Here's how we can help you

Our economic development programming is focused on the idea that interlinked, strong, and diverse businesses will make island and remote coastal communities not only sustainable, but help them thrive. In addition to supporting strong community economic planning, we know that helping individual entrepreneurs succeed is a key way we can help affect a strong coastal economy. With support from the John T.

Mapping the way for island high school students

A GPS will chart out a route for you, and direct you which way to go as you travel, but with a map, you can chart the route you want for yourself. A map is a powerful tool that puts you in the driver’s seat. At the Island Institute, we have created a “MAP” for high school students navigating the transition to post-secondary education.

Maine explores solutions to ocean acidification

On November 15th, the Maine Ocean and Coastal Acidification Partnership (MOCA) – a volunteer partnership of non-profit organizations, academic scientists, and state agency representatives – met in Augusta to discuss what we know about remediation strategies for ocean and coastal acidification in our state.

Commercial Currents: Innovating to succeed in small markets

Along the coast of Maine, general stores host the hustle and bustle in these otherwise tranquil communities. While some are closing their doors permanently, there are many others that are finding ways to not only survive but really thrive!