Fact Sheets


Reforming a Rigged American Beef Market

Montana’s ranchers are in danger of going out of business because our food system is only working for big corporations rather than our ranchers and consumers. We must act now to reform the 1921 Packers and Stockyards Act and bring transparency, accountability, and fairness back to our markets. (2022)

Country of Origin Labeling (COOL): Montana’s Right to an Honest Market

Country-of-Origin Labeling for beef and pork is currently a voluntary program and it’s simply not working. Imported beef and pork can be labeled “Product of USA” even if it’s meat raised somewhere else and only packaged in the United States. This fraudulent label betrays American ranchers, rural communities, and consumers by misrepresenting imported beef as American. We need honesty to be required for labeling beef and pork, as is required for all other products in Montana. (2020)

Country of Origin Labeling (COOL)

Did you know meat products labeled “Product of the USA” often aren’t? The USDA allows products that have been slightly altered in the United States to use that claim. We are working with our members, Montana lawmakers, and other allies to bring COOL back to Montana. We deserve to know where our food comes from and so do you! (2018)

Local Food

Buying local foods creates a direct connection between consumers and producers. It supports local business and keeps local dollars circulating in local economies. Investing in local foods is investing in the future of your local community! (2016)

Farm to School

Providing kids with local, healthy food options builds healthier communities, supports local agriculture, and bolsters local economies.

Clean Energy

Commercial Property Assessed Capital Enhancements (C-PACE)

A simple, effective way to finance energy-efficient and water conservation upgrades to commercial buildings (including agricultural properties). This financing program was passed into law at the 2021 Legislative Session. This easy-to-read roadmap will help answer all of your C-PACE questions. (2022)

The Buck Stops Here (protecting Montana’s energy customers)

NorthWestern Energy wants “pre-approval” to buy a larger share of an aging power plant while passing all the risks and costs onto Montanans for years to come. It’s up to the Public Service Commission to do their job to consider the public’s interests and NOT just do the bidding of a monopoly power company.

NorthWestern Energy’s Attack on Solar (rate case)

NorthWestern Energy filed a “rate case” with the Montana Public Service Commission in 2019, proposing to penalize residential solar customers by creating a separate rate class for them. (2019)

Making Solar Accessible to All

Simple changes in Montana law would allow more Montanans access to solar energy while saving homeowners and tenants money, creating new jobs, and making space for economic development. (2014)


Doing It Right: Protecting Jobs, Groundwater, and Property Values

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality is finalizing plans for the cleanup of Colstrip’s coal ash ponds which leak 183 million gallons of contaminated water each year. This document provides an update of this approval process while providing data about the job creation potential of a “high and dry” cleanup approach that involves excavation of the ash ponds. It also provides information about the danger this contamination presents to ranchers and others who rely on local groundwater, making responsible cleanup imperative to the long-term health of the community. (2020)

Doing it Right II: Job creation through Colstrip cleanup

We know from Doing it Right that thorough coal ash cleanup (“high and dry”) is the best way to permanently address groundwater contamination. We also know this type of cleanup creates more jobs than simply leaving it in place (“cap-in-place”). But how many jobs does it create…and how much does it cost? Using data from Montana-licensed economists, hydrologists, and engineers, Doing it Right II: Job Creation through Colstrip cleanup provides answers to those questions. Here’s an overview. (2019)

Doing it Right: Colstrip’s bright future with cleanup

In 2018, we partnered with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1638 to research the job creation potential associated with coal ash cleanup. Here are the key takeaways from the 93-page case study analysis. (2018)

Millennium Bulk Terminals

The last of six proposed coal export facilities in the Pacific Northwest would increase the number of coal trains crossing Montana from the Powder River Basin to fuel Asian economies. (2016)

Good Neighbor Agreement

The Water Quality Adaptive Management Plans

Striving to further strengthen the proactive and precautionary approach of the GNA’s existing Water Program, the Water Quality Adaptive Management Plans seek to maintain baseline water quality in groundwater and surface water, while going above and beyond state and federal requirements to ensure the East Boulder and Stillwater Rivers remain healthy and pristine. (2020)

Good Neighbor Agreement

For years, Northern Plains members fought against Stillwater Mining Company to protect water quality and the communities in Stillwater and Sweet Grass Counties. In 2000, spurred by action taken by Northern Plains members, the two sides worked together and negotiated an agreement to extend protections beyond state requirements to protect property, water, and area communities, while allowing platinum and palladium mining to proceed. The Good Neighbor Agreement has protected land with conservation easements, instituted a busing program to vastly reduce traffic on winding valley roads, and provided for independent environmental audits. (2018)

Eminent Domain

Eminent Domain: Your Land; Your Rights

Northern Plains Resource Council’s effort to inform Montana landowners who face condemnation. (2011)

Hard-rock Mining

The Good Neighbor Agreement

A unique, innovative, and ongoing partnership between Northern Plains Resource Council and the Stillwater Mine. Established in 2000, the goal of the Good Neighbor Agreement is to protect the quality of life for residents in the Boulder and Stillwater Valleys while providing for responsible economic development. (2018)

Oil & Gas

Oil & Gas Tax Holiday

Northern Plains Resource Council’s campaign to end the tax holiday that has cost Montana taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. (2013)

Laurel Methane Plant

NorthWestern Energy has hatched a scheme to build a series of destructive methane plants in Montana, the first of them in Laurel. Methane is a climate pollutant, an increasingly unreliable and expensive form of energy production, and dangerous to the health of our communities. (2022)

Rural Electric Co-ops

Rural Electric Co-op Reform

Ensure the rural electric cooperatives work openly with members to achieve affordable power by adopting cleaner, cheaper, faster energy solutions. (2016)

On Bill Financing

The cheapest energy is the energy we don’t use. Learn how this financing tool can help Montanans make meaningful improvements to their homes and businesses without accruing debt. (2018)


Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

Corporations are trying to undermine America’s food system through secrecy, speculation, and by giving themselves power over Amercian laws. (2016)