Ferry crosses Rockland harbor.
October 25, 2021

A lifeline for island communities

Affordable, reliable transportation to and from Maine's islands is a crucial link for sustainability

Whether you live on an island in one of the Great Lakes or off of the coast of Maine, the commute to and from your community is over water. However, ferry, water taxi, and air services provide more than just transportation to and from island communities. They act as emergency medical transportation, provide school and extracurricular transportation, and deliver mail and other essential freight such as groceries and prescription drugs. Whether going to work, a medical appointment, the grocery store, or catching a plane, the ferry is a vital link in the journey.
Lisa Millette
September 20, 2021

Islands are Rising

New national network highlights challenges and opportunities faced by U.S. islands in building climate resilience

"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…
Suzanne MacDonald
August 31, 2021

Legislative Update: Summer 2021

Investing in Economic and Climate Resilience

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.
Nick Battista
August 6, 2021

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.
Lisa Millette
August 5, 2021

Celebrating National Oyster Day

Hear from three Maine oyster farmers about this amazing bivalve and their work on the water

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 Institute
July 30, 2021

Island student shares semester at sea experience

Islesboro sophomore uses educational support to learn about career on the water

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.
Robin Chernow and Dylan Frank
July 22, 2021

Why workforce?

Broadening our focus to address this critical need

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.
Yvonne Thomas
July 16, 2021

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.
Lisa Millette
July 13, 2021

Energy resilience planning begins in Eastport and Islesboro

What communities everywhere can learn about clean energy from Maine's islands and coast

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).
Emma Wendt
June 22, 2021

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

Takeaways from a decade of work on ocean planning and offshore wind

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.
Suzanne MacDonald | Nick Battista