Archive for the ‘Energy’ Category

Event Summary: ESP at 2012 Preparedness Fair

Saturday, May 12th, 2012

by Catherine Haug, May 12, 2012

Bigfork Emergency Response Team (BERT) hosted the first Bigfork Preparedness Fair on May 5, 2012. Although the weather was wet, windy and cold, the fair had an excellent turnout: over 300 people signed in and there were many booths both indoors and out, as well as several lecturers.

ESP had a booth in one corner of the main room, featuring a backboard of photos from past gatherings, books on sustainability topics to browse through, and Jeffrey Fund’s pedal-powered grain grinder for people to try out. We had several different grains to grind: spelt, Jeffrey’s wheat and Wheat Montana’s Prairie Gold wheat. (more…)

The Downside of Building ‘Green’

Friday, March 30th, 2012

by Catherine Haug, March 30, 2012

The Greenest Building is Almost Always the One Already Built,” is the conclusion of Preservation Green Lab: a National Trust report, It offers statistical evidence that  preserving or restoring existing buildings typically results in less negative climate impact  than building a new green building.”  Here are some highlights from that report (based on data from 4 US cities representing 4 different climate zones): (more…)

Back Porch View Magazine, Spring 2012 Issue

Friday, March 2nd, 2012

by Catherine Haug, March 2, 2012

The new quarterly issue of the local Back Porch View Magazine just came out, and is worth a look. And not just because I have a story published in it (The Great Cribbage Tournament of 1958, pages 6-7). There are several articles on sustainability topics, and it has a great local community feel. You can find free copies at various businesses in Bigfork, Somers, Lakeside Kalispell, Columbia Falls and Libby. Or you can subscribe (see their website).

Here are some articles in the Spring 2012 issue, pertinent to ESP’s mission: (more…)

Benefit and Care of Trees Around your Home

Saturday, November 19th, 2011

by Catherine Haug, November 14, 2011

Last month I posted Taming Stormwater with Trees; this month I want to talk about use of trees and shrubs around your home. Did you know that trees around your home can increase your property value by 15%, and improve your odds of a sale? Why would this be?

Properly maintained trees and shrubs add to curbside appeal because of their beauty, but they also provide the following benefits:

  • Decrease carbon dioxide (CO2) and increase oxygen (O2) levels in the atmosphere;
  • Improve water quality and reduce erosion;
  • Give songbirds a home, and provide food for all kinds of wildlife;
  • Provide shade in summer and a windbreak in winter, thereby reducing your cooling and heating costs.

Read on for information on: Siting a tree; Planting a tree, and Tree care.  (more…)

Re-powering the Flathead: New Report Available

Friday, November 4th, 2011

by Catherine Haug, November 3, 2011

The new report by Repowering the Flathead is now available. You can download an electronic copy online at Report: Re-powering the Flathead, or call to reserve a $10 hard copy  at 756-8993, or email at The report is 116 pages long.

For the last 3 years, Repowering has been working on this report which provides “information to decision makers in the Flathead Valley about current and future opportunities in energy use, and to best position these decision makers to harness those opportunities as they arise. With abundant renewable energy sources, innovative technology, and outstanding entrepreneurship, the Flathead has an extraordinary opportunity to create a new direction for energy use and development in our region.”

This is an in-depth report that discusses the following main topics by chapter: (more…)

Living a Simpler Life

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

by Catherine Haug, October 30, 2011

In sorting through my library of books to trim my collection, I came across one about simplifying your life (1). I decided to give it another look; perhaps there might be ideas here to help us on our path toward sustainable living. This is the first in a series of posts inspired by ideas in this book.

Just what is ‘a simpler life?’

Here are a couple quotes to contemplate: (more…)