Islands are Rising

“Under the weight of climate change impacts—biodiversity loss, debilitating storms, and swallowing seas—islands are not sinking. Strong and resilient, islands are rising.” In solidarity, islands are uniting in common purpose….islands are distant, but they are not alone. Together, Islands Are Rising.” DR. AUSTIN J. SHELTON Director of the University of Guam Center for Island Sustainability and… Read more »

Legislative Update: Summer 2021

We work collaboratively with communities to tackle challenges and build resiliency. While this often means spending time in the places where we live and work, it also means focusing on what’s happening further inland at the State House. This “long” session of the Maine Legislature lived up to its name this year as significant legislative work happened well into mid-July. The policy landscape shifted dramatically during this session, with more than $300 million available to support economic and climate resilience work.

Archipelago Artist Profile: Gail Miller

For the next feature in our ongoing series of Archipelago artist profiles, the Island Institute’s Lisa Millette introduces us to Maine jewelry maker, Gail Miller, whose upcycled scrap metal jewelry has been featured in Archipelago since it opened in 2000.

Celebrating National Oyster Day

Today, we’re celebrating a delicious bivalve that grows in Maine’s cold, clean waters—the oyster. Oyster farming, and other types of shellfish and seaweed aquaculture, offer an array of benefits for our ocean and Maine’s island and coastal working communities. We asked three Maine oyster farmers 10 questions about their work on the water and what it means for our coast.

Island student shares semester at sea experience

Since 2013, the Island Institute has been able to offer Geiger Scholarships to island students to help them pursue off-island enrichment experiences like summer camp or a semester abroad. Islesboro sophomore Dylan Frank, a Geiger scholar who also received a Compass Workforce Grant, recently spent his Spring semester aboard a schooner with Sailing Ships Maine and gained skills to help him pursue a career on the water.

Why workforce?

The workforce shortage in Maine is nothing new, but it has become even more acute and highly visible as we emerge from the pandemic. In our work supporting Maine’s island and coastal communities, we’ve heard a lot about the workforce issues they are facing, and it is a top area of concern for the partners we work with. In response, we are broadening our education work to better focus on this critical issue.

Archipelago Artist Profile: Helene Farrar

For the next feature in our ongoing series of Archipelago artist profiles, the Island Institute’s Lisa Millette introduces us to encaustic painter, Helene Farrar, whose nature-inspired pieces create a profound connection to Maine and the world around us.

Energy resilience planning begins in Eastport and Islesboro

How do you cope with electricity outages and plan for energy resilience when you’re a small, isolated community—either at the end of a 40-mile power line or on an island several miles out to sea? Eastport and Islesboro, both off Maine’s coast, were selected to tackle these issues through a U.S. Department of Energy program, the Energy Transitions Initiative Partnership Project (ETIPP).

Offshore wind in Maine: Using what we’ve learned to guide our future

Since the development of Maine’s Ocean Energy Task Force in 2008, the Island Institute has worked to help the questions, priorities, and concerns of fishermen and fishing communities be heard in decisions about ocean use. As we move into a new set of work to support these conversations, here’s some of what we’re bringing with us from the past 13 years.

Building climate resilience in Maine

Now that Maine’s Climate Action Plan, “Maine Won’t Wait,” has been finalized and shared widely, what’s our role at the Island Institute in supporting our state’s ambitious goals? Since our last update, we’ve continued to work alongside Maine’s island and coastal communities to build climate resilience. Here, we highlight several examples of where we’re collaborating with communities and partner organizations.