BY CRYSTAL HAGERMAN
The Healthy Forest Initiative program is working with Northwest
Management, a business contracted
to prepare the fi nal draft of the Big
Sky Forest Stewardship Plan. Once
complete, the Council will make
it available to the public through
printed and electronic copies, public
forums and workshops.
The Council is also working towards
offering natural resource education,
being a resource for natural resource/
forestry information, and assisting
with forest related activities that can
reduce on-the-ground costs such as
utilizing the woody biomass from
forest activities, and/or treating forests on a landscape level to keep costs
low, and being more effective with
actively managing forestlands.
In January, Council Member Ernie
Filice coordinated an informational
conference call with General Electric, Nexterra, council members,
and representatives from Montana
Department of Natural Resource and
Conservation and Montana Department
of Environmental Quality.
– Where GE and Nexterra stand with
utilization of woody biomass projects.
– How Big Sky can determine if there
is enough woody biomass material
from private lands to supply a system
long term and that the system is cost
effective for the owner and supplier.
– How Big Sky can determine and
ensure that a woody biomass system
would not compromise Big Sky’s precious and very important air quality
for breathing and aesthetics.
Filice is conducting ongoing conversations
with Northwest Energy, and
the Council is looking to have them
attend the April Council meeting.