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Northern Plains organizes Montana citizens to protect our water quality, family farms and ranches, and unique quality of life.

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CMRC Community Solar Basics

February 22, 2017
Would you like to control your future energy costs by investing in clean energy? Have you considered solar? Find out how community solar works and how you can participate in Fergus Electric’s new community solar project, at a free informational seminar to be held Wednesday Feb 22, 2017 at the Community Center at 307 W Watson Street, in Lewistown. Speakers Dan Rogers with Missoula Electric Cooperative and Orion Thornton with Onsite Energy Inc. will explain the basics of community solar, lower solar costs and increased efficiencies. Fergus Electric Cooperative general manager Scott Sweeney will introduce the co-op’s new community solar project. Registration and refreshments begin at 4 p.m., the presentation... read more >

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Plains Speaking Blog

Enable PACE for economic development, energy conservation

By: Tyler Gernant, Rob Farris-Olsen, and Jay Cederberg

PACE can power economic development in Montana’s communities. By providing affordable financing for renovations to existing buildings, PACE encourages businesses to invest in the area and create jobs using the local workforce. When property owners can affordably finance upgrades, more projects are undertaken and completed, creating more work for HVAC, insulation, lighting, and electrical contractors, engineers and suppliers.

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Northern Plains Resource Council offers a number of publications, including fact sheets, the Plains Truth newsletter, legislative bulletins, special reports and more.

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The Northern Plains Resource Council works to protect Montana's working landscapes, educate on environmental issues and sustainable agriculture, defend our water quality, avert the effects of climate change... Read more >

The Northern Plains Resource Council works to protect Montana's working landscapes, educate on environmental issues and sustainable agriculture, defend our water quality, avert the effects of climate change, and ensure that citizens are able to play a meaningful role in the public policies that affect their lives.

The time is now to transition away from fossil fuels, and to encourage energy efficiency and renewable energy like abundant Montana wind and Montana solar resources.

Protecting family-based farming and ranching means advancing sustainable agriculture, landowner rights, water quality and conservation, and access to local foods. It means ending monopolization in the meatpacking industry and educating consumers about genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and how GMO foods chip away at the rights of farmers and take away consumer choice.

Montana farmers and ranchers have too often found themselves in the path of fossil fuel projects. Much of the coal that is mined in Montana, including a proposed mine at Otter Creek, is destined for the coal export market. Coal trains, like the proposed Tongue River Railroad, then haul the coal across the state, causing dust, fires, and traffic delays along the route. Past and present mines often fail to satisfy mine reclamation requirements, leaving a lasting legacy of contaminated soil and water that impedes agricultural and recreational use. Montana climate change, caused by ever increasing environmental issues, is accelerating, causing increasingly erratic weather.

Montana also has significant oil and gas reserves that can be extracted by conventional drilling, hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Fracking in Montana extracts millions of gallons of water from underground, contaminates wells and aquifers, and creates toxic waste. Protecting Montana water rights from destructive oil and gas development depends on baseline water testing to document the quality and quantity of water present prior to any development activity.

In addition to addressing environmental issues that impact Montana agriculture and climate change, Northern Plains also stands up for water rights and property rights near the Stillwater mine. Our members negotiated the Good Neighbor Agreement with the Stillwater Mining Co. to ensure the impacts of mining operations are minimized, to conserve water to the extent possible, and to carefully monitor impacts on water quality and quantity. The agreement is upheld by the Stillwater Mining Co and active members of Northern Plains who provide citizen oversight.

NORTHERN PLAINS RESOURCE COUNCIL
220 South 27th Street, Suite A
Billings, Montana 59101
(406) 248-1154
info@northernplains.org