Resilience in Bozeman, MT
Bozeman, Montana is located in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and is the fastest growing micropolitan area in the nation (2016 Census) with 20% population growth since 2012. In addition to the mounting pressures of growth, Bozeman can expect continued warming with precipitation becoming less reliable. In the future, more moisture is expected to arrive as rain instead of snow. Bozeman depends on snowpack for 80% of its water supply--making it vulnerable to drought, wildfire, poor air quality, and economic losses to its thriving tourism and outdoor economies. With the current pace of growth, Bozeman could face a water shortage within 20 years.
In order to stay in front of this potential crisis, the city is undertaking a multi-phase process to 1) build a common language and understanding around resiliency within our organization, 2) bring the concept of resiliency planning to the larger community, and 3) develop a community Resiliency Action Plan. The process is being spearheaded by the mayor Cyndy Andrus and coordinated between the Sustainability Division as well as the Economic Development Division. The first phase is already underway and a City Resilience workshop for over 50 of the city’s senior staff will take place in February in partnership with Arizona State University.
To maintain momentum and advance the city’s second goal of bringing the resiliency conversation to the entire community, the Leadership in Community Resilience Program will facilitate a mayor-led Resiliency Summit to engage with neighboring jurisdictions, federal and state agencies, the utility, businesses, education and health care institutions, as well as non-profits focused on water, energy, growth, and land conservation.