Governor Steve Bullock today announced that the Montana Climate Solutions Council has released its final recommendations in a plan that spans over 50 recommendations from a year of deliberations with diverse Montanans. The Council was tasked with developing strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, prepare the state for climate impacts, foster innovation across Montana’s economy, and address the needs of communities in transition through appropriate economic development and workforce strategies.
“Montanans across the state believe climate change is a significant challenge posing risks to Montana and to future generations,” said Governor Bullock. “As the Montana Climate Solution Council’s work demonstrates, there is an impressive array of opportunities and recommendations that represent a broad-based consensus and can serve as a foundation for bipartisan climate action moving forward.”
The recommendations in the plan span a mix of state programs and policy, utility regulatory policy, incentive programs, federal policies, and university and business partnerships:
- Chapter 1 of the plan focuses on efforts to prepare communities for current and anticipated future impacts associated with a changing climate.
- Chapter 2 of the plan outlines a comprehensive set of strategies to reduce emissions and put Montana on a trajectory to achieve the goal Governor Bullock outlined for the Council of achieving net-greenhouse gas neutrality for the electric power sector by 2035, and in a timeline determined by the Council, net-zero emissions across the economy by as soon as 2045 and no later than 2050.
- Chapter 3 of the plan brings forward a set of consensus-based opportunities to work on regional economic development, technology innovation and workforce needs.
- The report also identifies recommendations to prepare Montana’s workforce for a changing economy through focusing on apprenticeships, establishing career training centers in the public education system, and securing high quality wages for workers in industrial, construction and energy trades in related emerging sectors of our economy.
Implementation of this plan requires action by a number of entities, including the state legislature, the public service commission, the executive branch, and numerous business and nonprofit partners. The plan itself is meant to be a foundation for these efforts and the starting point for what needs to be a sustained and ongoing dialogue for the state.
The full plan can be found at this link: http://deq.mt.gov/DEQAdmin/dir/Climate