There is no debate: Climate Change is real and it's happening here. Scientists have given us until 2030 to make big changes so we have little time. We need to get this right.
Check out these resources:
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: https://www.ipcc.ch/
USA National Climate Assessment:
Montana Climate Assessment:
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently released a special report stating that our land use decisions can exacerbate or mitigate climate change. Helena updated its Growth Policy with strong climate, resilience, and zero waste goals. We can make choices that create a more resilient community in the face of a changing climate.
Helena's Updated Growth Policy: https://www.helenamt.gov/government/departments/community-development/planning/long-range-planning
Our community is working on energy conservation and renewable, sustainable energy.
There are 3 key steps towards a more sustainable energy future: 1) Reduce consumption, 2) Electrify everything; and 3) Green the grid!
100% Renewable Energy by 2030! and initiatives such as Climate Strikes to Emissions Inventories to LEDs, EV Charging Stations, Passenger Rail, and City Resolutions.
There are many reasons to plant trees!
It's fun to do with friends and neighbors.
Decreased need for irrigation.
(save water and money)
(decreased 'heat island effect')
Carbon capture and Oxygen!
Cleaner air. Manage Water.
Beauty. Habitat. Fruit and Nuts.
Increased property values.
Proactive actions against Emerald Ash Borer. And so many more!
On average, each person in Helena uses 175 gallons of water per day. In the US, the state with the highest per capita average water use is Idaho with 184 gallons/person/day (Statistica 2015). We can do better! Some suggestions:
Every day, each of us produces an average of 3.13 lbs (1.42 kg) of waste. Every Day. Every Person. Recyling is not enough. We must reduce consumption. Re-design products and packaging. Globally, we are on track to produce 2.2 billion tons of trash per year by 2025.
In Helena, we are working towards
Zero Waste. Help us by taking these steps:
Let's get started!
The Transition Network supports Towns worldwide coming together to re-imagine and
re-build our world.' Generally, the movement is guided by these principles:
Respect resource limits and create resilience
Promote inclusivity and social justice
Self-organization and decision-making
Pay attention to work-life-inner balance
Freely share ideas and power
Collaborate and look for synergies
Foster positive visioning and creativity
Helena is an 'emerging' Transition Town as we consider officially joining the Transition Town Network.
Transition Streets is a neighborhood-level activity from Transition US.
We piloted 'Transition Streets' in the Bentonia (near Mt. Helena) neighborhood of Helena in 2019. We had a lot of fun! We learned a lot and got to know our neighbors better!
We held seven neighborhood gatherings to discuss: Transition Street Concept, Energy, Water, Food, Waste, Transportation, and What to from here? We are continuing to meet and are starting a 'tool sharing' initiative.
Helena has a Citizens' Conservation Board (CCB) which was created when Helena signed onto the Paris Climate Accord. The CCB advises the City Commission re: actions that City should take to address climate change. The CCB works with the City's Sustainability Coordinator, City Departments, and the public to promote climate change planning, adaptation, mitigation, and action. The CCB's work builds upon the City's Climate Change Action Plan (2009) and incorporates other plans such as the Growth Policy and Infrastructure Plans.