One of my fondest memories as a child was collecting lightning bugs. On special summer nights, as the sun would set, our tiny backyard would begin to sparkle and glow. My cousins and I would dance and squeal as we carefully collected fireflies in cupped hands. As adults, the magic some of us remember of catching a jar full of fireflies hasn’t been a reality for many years. I’ve witnessed less flickering with every passing year.

Many of us are already aware that it’s not just our beloved firefly. Bees – which we depend on for the fruit and vegetables we see in supermarkets – are declining at an alarming rate. Browntail moths thrive as our ecosystem becomes more unbalanced. Humanity is facing the stark fact that 1 million species are on the brink of extinction. Protecting our planet is not someone else’s problem. We need to face this issue head on, right here in Maine.

Climate scientists are saying that we still have a small window of time to limit global warming, but we need brave and bold change now. While there are many ways to actively combat climate change, investing in renewable-energy projects today is tangible and highly beneficial. I implore our legislators to please vote to pass L.D. 1711 and promote solar energy projects in Maine.

In passing this bill, there would be policy in place to incentivize large-scale solar projects as well as community solar projects. Our state needs incentives to help more of us afford to get on board with solar energy, and we desperately need this bill to help Maine lead the way to a more stable climate. L.D. 1711 would be a huge step for Maine in taking the lead to show other states that we can and should prioritize solar energy.

Heather Abbott


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