April 05, 2020

Attracted to the marsh

Nature has endowed us with a great gift. If we do not cherish and enrich the Earth, our descendants will be left with shreds of our selfishness. Industry, commercialism and entertainment became our excuses for disregarding nature’s needs. Our community struggles with these issues today as Wal-Mart launches its second campaign to build a new Supercenter adjacent to the environmentally sensitive Penjajawoc Marsh on Stillwater Avenue. This should be prohibited because of the possible environmental risks to something so significant to our community.

The proposed project would disrupt a delicate ecosystem. Disturbance of the serene environment and the discrepancies in the corporation’s multiple mitigation plans should cause us to question the possibility of a healthy coexistence of the store and the marsh. Wildlife of the marsh is not accustomed to the urbanized “climate.”

When endemic species cannot function around the security beams and when “sounds of shopping” encumber the animals’ keen sense of hearing, the niches of prey and predators are distorted. A glitch in one population influences another and chaos spreads through the system. Any damage to the Penjajawoc Marsh represents a serious damage to our community.

The wetland is of great value historically, biologically and locally. According to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the marsh is home to more endangered species than any other Maine marsh they studied. The Bangor Area Citizens Organized for Responsible Development (BACORD) points out that our now-rare national symbol, the bald eagle, passes through the marsh. Many people are attracted to the marsh, including scientists, students, teachers, hikers, bird watchers and anyone generally interested in nature.

It is evident that the Penjajawoc Marsh is distinct in its biological significance throughout the past and present and the value it represents to the members of our community. Is this an impact you are willing to support?

Jenna Algee


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