AlexAnna Salmon speaks at the Island Energy Conference on November 6


Maine’s diesel islands find a role model, 3,500 miles away

11/13/2015 -

“I decided, after reading about the 15 Maine Islands, that we’re most similar to Matinicus,” said AlexAnna Salmon, Village Council President of Igiugig, Alaska and speaker at the Island Energy Conference. “We are not an island, but we are like an island in that you can only get there by air charter.” SEE MORE

Ben Algeo and Suzanne MacDonald unload boxes of LEDs


In Maine’s remotest island community, changing the lightbulb has far-reaching implications

11/8/2015 - The Island Institute runs programs to support sustainability on Maine’s 14 year-round, offshore communities. Changing out power-hungry bulbs on Monhegan and Matinicus is a first step to reduce dependence on diesel and help make island living more affordable. The 2,326 LEDs sent this year to Monhegan are expected to save utility customers a total of $15,000 a year. The 600 bulbs now on Matinicus could cut bills by a toal of $5,000. A second shipment planned for this winter of 400 bulbs could trim another $3,000 for the island. SEE MORE
The view from the hill on Monhegan.

Working Waterfront

Eight simple rules…

Editor’s note: One of the best programs the Island Institute (publisher of The Working Waterfront) ever created is its cadre of Island Fellows, recent college grads who do community service work on islands through the Institute and AmeriCorps. At the annual fellows luncheon in July, each fellow offered comments about their work. Ben Algeo, who… Read more » SEE MORE
From left: Brooks Winner


Welcome from the Community Energy Team

8/24/2015 - The Island Institute’s Community Energy Program supports island communities in reducing their energy costs and increasing the reliability and sustainability of island electricity and heating infrastructure. SEE MORE
Monhegan view of Manana.

Working Waterfront

I don’t play island favorites

Editor’s note: Reflections is a monthly column written by Island Fellows, recent college grads who do community service work on Maine islands through the Island Institute, publisher of The Working Waterfront, and AmeriCorps. This always happens. I’m telling someone what I do, how I work to lower the cost of energy on Monhegan and Matinicus… Read more » SEE MORE
Fishermen head back to Bass Harbor after a day hauling traps.

Working Waterfront

Fishing—a risky business

Fishermen face two realities on the water. There’s the potential for accidents that could result in death, injury or vessel loss. Then there’s the sheer pain many live with every day, a result of the bodily stresses they endure doing this hard work. Hazardous working conditions, strenuous labor, long work hours and harsh weather make… Read more » SEE MORE
Andy Smith (right)

Working Waterfront

Program gives islanders a leg up on lobstering

FRENCHBORO—Residents hoping to sustain a viable lobster fishing community are celebrating the implementation of a program that allows island fishermen to get fishing licenses more quickly than their mainland counterparts. “It’s a wonderful program to sustain the island for generations to come, not just for us, but for others,” said Kim Smith of the state’s… Read more » SEE MORE
The Neal Burgess

Working Waterfront

Propane on ferries remains a balancing act

  ROCKLAND — Trucks carrying propane in bulk or in 100-pound cylinders can travel to islands on the state ferry service, but not without restrictions on the number of passengers on the vessels. That’s the compromise solution offered to the Maine State Ferry Service by the U.S. Coast Guard, after federal regulations threatened to end… Read more » SEE MORE