Study Details Climate Change Impacts To Montana's Outdoor Economy

Dec 15, 2015

A new study predicts climate change could threaten some 11,000 Montana jobs and almost $300 million in outdoor labor earnings by 2050.

The Montana Wildlife Federation commissioned the father-son consulting team of Tom and Donovan Power to produce the report. Tom Power, professor emeritus of economics at the University of Montana, says other organizations have studied how a changing climate could affect specific sectors of our environment and economy.

"This, for Montana anyway, is the first report that we’re aware of that has tried to draw all those pieces together – both from the climate scientists, as well as economic factors -  and what climate change is likely to mean to them."

The study concludes that climate change-related droughts, fires and floods will eventually lead to fewer big game hunting, fishing and snow sport opportunities.

Doug Wales is Bridger Bowl Ski Area marketing director. Wales says great snow creates great word-of-mouth for Bozeman and feeds a thriving year-round regional economy.

"Having a strong winter economy, having great skiing all year long is an essential part of the big picture.”

Read the full “Impact of Climate Change on Montana’s Outdoor Economy” report here.