When traveling in Montana, you’ll often encounter signs such as this one along roadways and hiking trails:
These markers are a signal that the path you are traveling is part of the original route that Lewis and Clark, Sacajawea, and the rest of the Corps of Discovery traveled from St. Louis, Missouri, to Portland, Oregon, in the early 1800’s. The history of this expedition is an integral part of Montana’s culture, as one can see from the number of schools, libraries, mountain peaks, and even breweries named after Lewis and Clark. The Montana spirit of adventure makes it a perfect place for Brendle Group to collaborate with a new frontier of people and places in sustainability consulting and engineering.
The first three months of my adventures here have been filled with meetings and events that have shown me that Montana organizations and residents are doing great sustainability work throughout the state. I’m excited about the many opportunities for Brendle Group to support current work and initiate new projects in the coming months. Here are a few highlights:
- In January the Montana Chapter of the USGBC partnered with the Climate Reality Project to host the first Keep it Deep event at Moonlight Basin. This was a great day filled with skiing, speakers, food, and music, all centered around raising awareness about climate impacts on winter recreation. The Montana USGBC folks are doing excellent work, and I look forward to getting involved.
- The Sustainable Business Council, based in Missoula, hosted two days of events in February, featuring speakers from Microsoft, the University of Montana, Biomimicry 3.8, the state Department of Labor and Industry, and other entities who shared examples of how sustainability makes sense, and makes cents! I met a lot of great people here who I plan to reach out to in the near future.
- Turning the Tide is an annual event at St. Patrick’s Hospital in Missoula where health care providers and other interested parties gather to talk about the health impacts of climate change and how to mitigate them. This year I met a nurse who works in Eureka, Montana and is involved with Health Care Without Harm– an organization that is leading the global movement toward environmentally responsible health care. Another potential partner for Brendle Group!
- In March, I took a field trip to the Rainbow Dam Redevelopment project in Great Falls, where PPL Montana has built a new 62 Mega-watt powerhouse that will increase the amount of renewable energy generated in Montana.
- This month, Brendle Group engineer John Butler and I made a presentation for the Helena Tourism Bureau Improvement District regarding the work that Brendle Group does with hotels and other hospitality businesses. It was a good conversation and I look forward to seeing where it leads!
It has been an awesome few months, and with undaunted courage, I look forward to the challenges and opportunities that are ahead as we embark on this Brendle Group expansion- and I’ll keep you posted!