Environmental issues in the Bitteroot Valley

The Bitterroot valley of southwestern Montana has more than a few environmental problems. Shrinking forests because of invasive insects and logging, commercial apple orchards are consuming the nitrogen from the soil making it difficult for farmers, salinization has made the water crucial for farming very poor, also non native species has made life for native species very difficult all across  Montana. Most of these problems are not historical in nature and are actually caused by commercial companies. Most of these problems were caused unknowingly and are just a side effect of companies trying to make money off of the land. This causes a domino effect for the Bitterroot valley because all of these environmental issues makes it hard to make a living off of the land so many of the valleys young people are leaving which carries a severe impact on the economy of the valley.


The Bitterroot valley and the rest of Montana make a great explanatory model for people to understand the world’s environmental issues.  This is because Montana acts like a miniature model of what we are doing to our planet. The recklessness by big commercial companies has had a very big impact on ecosystems that communities and native animals rely on throughout the world. As the valley continues to be affected by these issues the valley and its people will be stuck in a steady decline until things even out or are figured out for the betterment of the valley. This is exactly the same problem that the rest of the world is faced with which makes Montana a prime explanatory model.


4 thoughts on “Environmental issues in the Bitteroot Valley”

  1. I think you highlighted just about every issue that is having a large environmental impact on the Bitterroot valley. It’s very tough to make money and continue the tradition of great agriculture in the valley if the soil is too salient and there isn’t enough water to go around. The Bitterroot valley seems to be easily affected by these issues and it does seem to hinder the well-being of the people that reside in the valley. While this particular area does seem to be an excellent model for the impact humans can have on the environment I don’t think that Montana is past the point of no return unlike many parts in the rest of the world. Certain parts of Australia have enough soil salinity that crops no longer grow, the Bitterroot valley does still seem to be able to grow crops. While we need to change the direction and take responsibility and action for the problems we have caused, we’ve not yet bleed Montana dry of the things that makes it so pristine and amazing!

  2. I agree with everything that you are saying with why the Bitterroot valley has many different environmental problems. I also agree with your statement about how Montana is a good example for the worlds environmental issues because it is a miniature model of the entire world and its environmental issues. I do not agree with your analysis that states these environmental issues facing the Bitterroot valley are not historical in nature because they are caused by corporations. I believe that these problems were caused by corporations, but they are also historical. We are going to have to find a way to fix these issues before they destroy the Bitterroot valley.

  3. I think you hit many good points. The fact that all the commercial companies starting up in Montana are causing problems with the environment and they don’t do anything about it because they probably don’t care. I also like how you hit some of the natural disasters that do cause the Bitterroot Valley problems as well. You know what you are talking about. But I think adding some points about all the fires and the super dry climate would have made your first paragraph better than it already is.

  4. I think everything you highlighted here was spot on, especially your analysis of how big companies are only trying to make a profit off of the land and aren’t considering, let alone caring about, the consequences of how their actions may affect the land they’re profiting off of. I think you’re right about Montana being a small scale model of what’s happening with the rest of the world too. Corporations profiting off of, but not caring about the damage they’re doing, isn’t exclusive to Montana and I think it’s important that that continues to be recognized.

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