On Monday, July 1, 2019, Montana Governor Steve Bullock issued an Executive Order establishing the Montana Climate Solutions Council, tasking up to 30 Montanans with providing made-in-Montana recommendations and solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, prepare the state for climate impacts, and address the needs of communities in transition through appropriate economic development and workforce strategies.
“Climate change is already impacting our way of life and our economy. How we choose to respond to the changes around us offers a pivotal opportunity to both safeguard our traditional strengths and diversify and grow new opportunities for our future,”
said Governor Bullock. “That’s why I’m convening a diverse group of Montanans to develop thoughtful solutions to address climate change for our state.”
“Like all difficult issues we tackle here in Montana, I know we can find a path forward by getting together, rolling up our sleeves, and focusing on the values we share in common. The state needs Montana-focused solutions, now more than ever,”
continued Governor Bullock.
The creation of the Council is a result of discussions with legislators and Montanans from the most recent legislative session on how Montana can create a path forward in setting goals for the state around the issue of climate change.
Governor Bullock tasked the Council with issuing a Montana Climate Solutions Plan by June 1, 2020. Other duties include:
- Make recommendations toward achieving an interim goal of net greenhouse gas neutrality for average annual electric loads in the state by no later than 2035 and a goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions economy-wide at a date to be determined by the Council;
- Coordinate with the Montana University System to identify strategies to build upon the work of the Montana Climate Assessment (MCA) to develop science driven, regionally relevant research on climate impacts facing Montana’s economy, and to identify opportunities for the state to support innovation in climate-smart research and technology development, demonstration, and manufacturing work with the state’s business community; and
- Coordinate with all relevant state agencies to make climate an immediate and actionable priority for the state and incorporate strategies to adapt to climate in agency planning.
Along with the establishment of the Council, Governor Bullock also announced that Montana will join the U.S. Climate Alliance. The U.S. Climate Alliance is a group of states that are committed to implementing policies that advance the goals of the Paris Agreement, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2025.
Read the Executive Order here.