Articles by: Stephen Rappaport

Stephen Rappaport

Stephen Rappaport

Waterfront Editor at The Ellsworth American
Stephen Rappaport has lived in Maine for nearly 30 years. A lifelong sailor, he spends as much time as possible messing about in boats. srappaport@ellsworthamerican.com
  • Will lobstermen wear life jackets while they work?

    Will lobstermen wear life jackets while they work?

    ELLSWORTH — It’s no secret that commercial fishing can be an extremely dangerous occupation. According to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health Center for Maritime Safety and Health Studies, the rate of fatalities in commercial fishing is more than 30 times higher than the average industrial fatality rate and falling overboard is the

  • DMR announces new program aimed at salmon recovery

    ELLSWORTH — The Department of Marine Resources has adopted a new program to provide funding for Atlantic salmon recovery work and reduce regulatory hurdles for road and bridge construction projects. The Atlantic Salmon Restoration and Conservation Program gives public and private parties working on road and bridge construction projects the flexibility to pay a fee

  • NOAA scientists admit a gaffe on risk to whales of lobster trap lines

    ELLSWORTH — Late last month, the NOAA Fisheries Northeast Fisheries Science Center released a “technical memorandum” suggesting that expensive efforts by Maine lobstermen aimed at reducing the risk that endangered North Atlantic right whales and other large whales would become entangled in vertical buoy lines had backfired. According to the memorandum, issued just before a

  • Lower herring quotas squeeze lobster trade

    Lower herring quotas squeeze lobster trade

    DEER ISLE — For the fishing industry, nothing is as constant as change. Last year, according to the Department of Marine Resources, lobster was Maine’s most valuable fishery with landings of 110,819,760 pounds — the sixth highest ever — worth some $450,799,283. Despite all the talk about high-value species such as scallops and elvers, according to

  • Lobster exports decline sharply as tariffs kick in

    Lobster exports decline sharply as tariffs kick in

    ELLSWORTH — Some say trade wars are easy to win, but every war has its casualties. According to trade figures just published by NOAA Fisheries, the lobster industry may be one of them. In June, the United States exported to China nearly 1.6 million pounds of live lobster worth $11.7 million. In July, live lobster

  • As lobster boats get bigger, engines are hard to come by

    As lobster boats get bigger, engines are hard to come by

    LAMOINE — Seated behind the desk in his office, boatbuilder Stewart Workman seemed pretty relaxed for a businessman with a big problem that seems to be growing worse. Workman owns SW Boatworks, the builder of some of the most popular boats used in the Maine lobster fleet. The company’s boats, drawn by two iconic Downeast

  • Belfast salmon farm plans move forward

    BELFAST — The mills of the gods are said to grind slow and so, it seems, does the process for establishing a land-based salmon farm. Last week, Nordic Aquafarms, which has plans to build a state-of-the-art land-based salmon farm in Belfast, gave formal notice that it will file an application for a wastewater discharge permit

  • Herring quotas under review

    Herring quotas under review

    PLYMOUTH, Mass. — With bait prices on the rise and the bait in short supply, the New England Fishery Management Council (NEMFC) met in Plymouth, Mass., on Tuesday to take final action on an amendment to the Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic herring. It’s a step that some lobstermen fear will prevent them from getting