The Bitterroot Valley faces a variety of environmental issues, many of which stem from how the land has been treated in the past. One example of this would be how, over a long period of time, a immediate fire suppression policy was in effect. This policy has curtailed the natural fire cycles and has led to an immense buildup in dry plants and brush that can lead to massive, uncontrollable forest fires, like the ones we are seeing today. Another issue is environmental pollution from mining and agriculture, where resources in the past were developed irresponsibly and without regard for their potential negative effects.
Many of the issues faced by Montana and the Bitterroot Valley can be extrapolated into a model to understand the environmental issues faced by the world, as very often we see severe negative environmental effects caused by people who use massive industry to plunder the Earth’s resources without adequately preparing for and mitigating the environmental damage that they inflict. Just as improperly managed mines in Montana have led to water pollution, the same has happened all over the world, and this theme of environmental harm occurring from unbounded industry is readily apparent in other areas of the world.