Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council

Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council advocates for a healthy, inviting, and sustainable community by educating, mobilizing, and testifying to ensure citizens voices are heard in the decision-making process, and formulating bold visions of a healthy and sustainable community and working cooperatively to achieve them.


Since its inception in 1979 around air-quality issues, YVCC has achieved many victories, including:

  • Helping to dramatically improve the air quality in Yellowstone County through a long-term campaign to improve the enforcement of air quality laws;
  • Increasing individual and institutional patronage of locally raised and processed food through our community food campaign;
  • Helping to ensure that Billings’ new library is a LEED Platinum certified, water- and energy-efficient building by engaging citizens and community leaders to build public support, while participating in every step of the city’s decision-making process.
  • Supported the efforts of teachers and parents to start school gardens at Canyon Creek School, Blue Creek School, and Billings West High School;
  • Recruited businesses to sponsor recycling pick-up in more than 20 Billings public elementary schools;
  • Supported our friends and neighbors to hold off oil and gas development along the Beartooth Front and in Yellowstone County;
  • Built support for a full-time neighborhood planner to coordinate “smart growth” planning in our community;
  • Successfully challenged efforts to site hazardous waste facilities near the Yellowstone River.


Our “Better Billings” Sustainability committee is working to make Billings a more affordable and sustainable place to live and work.

As a result of YVCC’s grassroots efforts, the Billings City Council recently voted in favor of re-establishing an Energy and Conservation Commission. The Commission will act as an advisory board to support city leadership in energy efficiency, innovation, and sustainability.

Green Buildings

To highlight the growing number of LEED buildings in Billings, YVCC created this “Guide to Green Buildings in Billings” which features a map of LEED-certified buildings. Did you know there are thirteen LEED certified buildings in Billings, including 6 that are LEED Platinum? Use the map to do your own walking tour! Hard copies are available at Home on the Range, as well as many of the featured businesses.



Larry Bean







Northern Plains Board Representatives

Kris Glenn
Emma Kerr-Carpenter

Community Organizer

Check out these upcoming events in your area!​

Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council Annual Meeting

Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council Annual..

Join Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council (YVCC) for our Annual Meeting! We’re bringing back our potluck for 2022, and we’re excited to join our members together in-person again.

Northern Plains’ 51st Annual Meeting

Northern Plains’ 51st Annual Meeting

After a half century of protecting Montanans’ right to a clean and healthful environment, this year Northern Plains is Bringing Democracy Home. Join us for our 51st Annual Meeting!


Our Team

Effy McEldowney

Grassroots Fundraising Coordinator

Michael Skinner

GNA Manager and Community Organizer

Jeanie Alderson, Birney

Past Chair

Emma Kerr-Carpenter, Billings

Affiliate Representatives- Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council

Kris Glenn, Billings

Affiliate Representatives- Yellowstone Valley Citizens Council

John Gayusky, Livingston

Affiliate Representatives- Yellowstone Bend Citizens Council

Joan Kresich, Livingston

Affiliate Representatives- Yellowstone Bend Citizens Council

Tom Heyneman, Fishtail

Affiliate Representatives- Stillwater Protective Association

Edward Barta, Billings

Vice-Chair & Affiliate Representatives - Stillwater Protective Association

Mic Smith, Helena

Affiliate Representatives- Sleeping Giant Citizens Council

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