The 2021 Summit is Soon!


Turning Climate Action into Economic Opportunity: Smart Growth Guidance for Maine Communities

November 4, 2021

Conflicts and opportunities abound right now for Maine’s diverse regions, iconic industries, and economies. In this environment, how will Maine ensure lasting positive impact from recent federal initiatives while activating our Climate Action Plan and 10-year economic plan?

Smart growth strategies can help turn risks to opportunity. At GrowSmart’s 2021 Summit you will hear success stories and learn the essential steps your community can take to stay ahead.

We are excited to introduce the theme and some details for our annual Summit. The format for this year’s Summit will be the same as last year’s, with our anchor location in Biddeford’s Pepperell Mill, and satellite locations confirmed in Machias and Calais thanks to Sunrise County Economic Council and Snow Pond Center for the Arts and more satellites to come.


We have confirmed the first of our two keynote speakers:

Dr. Devashree Saha: Senior Associate, World Resources Institute

Devashree Saha is a Senior Associate at WRI United States. In this role, she supports state, city, and federal policymakers as they work to develop and implement policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support clean energy. This includes analysis of the economics of climate action, and work to develop policies to enable an equitable transition to a low-carbon economy and ensure fairness for workers and communities adversely impacted by phase down of fossil fuels.
 Prior to joining WRI, Devashree led the Council of State Government’s (CSG) energy and environmental policy work where she was responsible for directing research and providing policy analysis and technical assistance to state legislators and executive branch officials. Before joining CSG, Devashree worked at the Brookings Institution where her research focused on a wide array of clean energy topics, including examining clean energy innovation trends at the U.S. sub-national level, identifying promising clean energy financing mechanisms, and estimating the employment size, nature and spatial geography of the U.S. clean economy. Earlier in her career, she worked for the National Governors Association, providing governors and their staff with data and guidance on best practices affecting the energy sector. Over her career, she has authored several publications on clean energy that have informed state and city policymaking.
 Devashree holds a Ph.D in public policy from the University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree in political science from Purdue University.

Be sure to check out our Summit 2021 page on the GrowSmart Maine website and follow us on social media for ongoing updates!

More info to come!

A Note from our Membership Committee Chair, Kirsten Brewer:

As a member of GrowSmart Maine, you know that smart growth principles are some of the best strategies for tackling Maine’s biggest challenges. I joined the Board because I deeply value the positive vision this organization advances that says yes to growth and prosperity and promotes a sustainable future.

In this moment, there is an urgency, and opportunity, for smart growth to shape the future of our communities. The surging real estate market indicates that communities need to act now to guide growth, to provide affordable housing for residents, and to  protect the natural resources that have made Maine such an attractive place to so many. Your membership helps GrowSmart Maine advocate and promote smart growth principles across our state. Please support GrowSmart Maine today with a gift. Please see our Membership Offerings below. 

Our signature event, the Annual Summit, convenes a conversation about smart growth with participants from many different sectors in Maine. On November 4th, our theme will be Turning Climate Action into Economic Opportunity; and we’ll take a look at the intersection of Maine’s Climate Action Plan and the state’s 10-year Economic Roadmap to examine how smart growth principles can help turn risks to opportunity.

Last year’s COVID-hybrid summit was a success despite the challenges of coming together during the pandemic. In fact, our summit theme of Flexing the Power of Home Rule: Forging a Path Towards Regional Solutions inspired new legislation, LD 1240, A Resolve To Review Barriers to Regional Solutions for Housing Choices. This resolve directs the Department of Economic and Community Development to conduct a review of barriers to regional solutions to making housing affordable, accessible, available, functional and compatible with strategies outlined in the Climate Action Plan. It was carried over to next year, which is a win given the large number of bills proposed in 2021. Your participation in our conversations about Maine’s challenges, passion for common-sense solutions,and your ongoing membership make legislation like this a reality.   

Thank you for being a supporter of GrowSmart Maine.  Your membership renewal today will provide the resources we need to continue to create lasting prosperity and strong communities  in Maine. If you have any questions about your membership, please be in touch with Membership Coordinator, Emily DuFour, at


Help us continue to help Maine

As we march forth working to keep Maine … Maine, we ask for your help, there are many ways to help GrowSmart Maine throughout the year! 

If you want to protect the things that are special about Maine, while encouraging sustainable prosperity now and in the future, please join us!

With your help, we can make these values an integral part of Maine’s legislation and state and local policy.

We know there have been many continued calls for financial assistance recently. What are some easy ways you support GrowSmart Maine and promote smart growth in Maine?

  • Follow us on social media. We are on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and YouTube. Follow us, like, and share our posts! Join us for future events, talks, and webinars.
  • Become a GrowSmart Member – Our supporters know the satisfaction of being part of a movement of Mainers who want to protect the things that are special about Maine, while growing sustainable prosperity for all parts of the state. With your help, we are working on the ground in communities around the state to build a network of engaged individuals, organizations and businesses that are shaping Maine’s future.
    Our annual memberships give you discounts to all of our events and supports our efforts in your neighborhood and beyond.
  • Give Smart to GrowSmart – make a recurring monthly donation of your choice to GrowSmart Maine
  • Support Small Businesses  – live out the smart growth principle of creating and securing a strong sense of place, by shopping at locally owned businesses all year long.
  • On-line shopping– Shopping from home? Shop at By making your regular purchases here, any time of year, AmazonSmile will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to GrowSmart Maine. Elect GrowSmart Maine as your designated charity here

Every effort counts, and we thank you for your support of our work in giving communities choices in how they respond to growth and change.