Happy Montana Power Deregulation Day.

I’m being facetious. I just want to make sure everyone has had a chance to read Ken Toole’s op-ed about the Montana Power debacle that happened 20 years ago today.


This was clearly a mistake brought about by elected officials swayed by powerful economic interests and their lobbyists who weren’t interested in listening to other points of view. And reviewing this history is important because we are facing new issues about the future of Montana’s energy system, and we not condemned to repeat their mistakes.

As citizens we can do what we must to make sure our point of view heard. We know that we can’t keep pouring CO2 and methane into our atmosphere and give the gift of a livable climate to our children. We must keep the fossil fuels in the ground and move hard toward renewable energy.

This is the Great Transition, and we must reject those in power — with their powerful lobbyists — who would lead us astray.

Jeff Smith, co-chair, 350 Montana