Last week at a reception in the Capital Rotunda, Groundworks Farm was awarded one of several EcoStar Awards for 2013, “recognizing Montanans voluntarily implementing pollution prevention practices”. Among the other recipients were other farmers, cheese-makers, restaurants, hospitals, tourist destinations, and even a Montessori School.
In addition to spending a well-earned afternoon off the farm, it was inspiring to learn of the innovation and creativity percolating in communities all over Montana, even right here in Fort Shaw. This included everything from designing a solar-powered irrigation wheel lines, to simply saving energy by changing policy: turning off lights and computers at the end of the day. At Groundworks Farm, we estimate that by using integrated methods and “pig tillers” in the garden, we reduce tractor fuel consumption by at least 30%.
This event was inspiring because it made me realize, yet again, that small changes can make a huge difference in reducing energy consumption, preventing waste, and conserving resources. Not only can we applaud the efforts of businesses around the state the are taking steps in this direction, we can directly support their efforts through our patronage. Supporting and cultivating innovators and leaders in conservation is an exciting and worthwhile investment.