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How will climate change affect businesses in Montana?

Students at the University of Montana looked into the question of how Montana businesses are affected by the changing climate. Starting in September, students split up into five teams to research the effects of climate change in Montana. Then, they took that knowledge and found five businesses around the state whose business was in some way connected to climate change.

Students set out across Montana to learn exactly how they had been affected. And while all of the businesses have noticed the changing climate, they have each been affected in different ways.

One team traveled to Big Timber to spend time with a corn seed farmer who used all natural techniques to cross-pollinate corn, making it more adaptable to different climates. Another team toured a Miles City vineyard, learned about the business, and saw the effects the warmer weather has on the grapes. A third team went to Bozeman to watch a company cut down beetle-killed trees—and make them into unique pieces of furniture. In Billings, one team talked to a Bozeman construction company using green building to make the new city library. And finally, another team traveled along with a Missoula fishing guide and saw how the waters, fish, and customers have changed.

Students found that each business had its struggles with everything from extreme weather to changing customers. But every business was working hard to adapt to the climate changes.

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