Entries by Emilie Ritter

Combating the Megadrought with ‘Soil for Water’

Column by Steve Thompson, NCAT Executive Director The soil that covers 93 million acres of sprawling Texas rangeland holds a remarkable story. It’s a tale of opportunity and ruin. At its best, the soil beneath our feet is the source of life, food, and economic security. At its worst, that same soil can crumble ranchers’ […]

Armed to Farm Alum Featured in Hometown Paper

Mark Stewart, a Navy veteran and 2019 Armed to Farm alum, launched a micro-farm business last year on Whidbey Island, Washington. Now, Stewart and his wife Melissa are featured in the Whidbey News-Times. They saw a need for local chicken on Whidbey Island and opened One Willow Farm last year. Now the busy couple sells […]

Elderberries: Easy to Grow Medicine

By Guy K. Ames, NCAT Horticulture Specialist I can hardly think of a perennial fruit easier to grow than elderberries. And I can hardly think of a food item with a stronger claim to health benefits. Coupling the ease of growing with this fruit’s new popularity as an effective medicine, this could be an opportune […]


Creating Habitat for Beneficials to Control Aphids

By Rex Dufour, NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Specialist Photo: Cover crop mix on April 28, 2020. Red crimson clover, mixed with orange California poppy, blue California Phacelia, and pink Persian clover (lower left). These flowers support large populations of predators, parasites, and pollinators. For the past growing season, my staff and I have been involved with […]

Thorton Building Energy Audit Case Study

The Thorton Building is a five-story building in Butte that contains office space and a 900-square-foot data center in the basement. The center is a significant consumer of energy, due to its servers and their dedicated cooling system. The building houses a 45-year-old steam boiler that provides heat through terminal units to the basement, as […]

Real Food Store

Energy costs in grocery stores can be quite high. But thanks to an energy audit performed by the Montana Resource Efficiency Program (MREP), an organic grocery in Helena has a variety of options to reduce those costs. The Real Food Store is an organic grocery and deli, located in Helena, Montana. The one-story retail facility […]

Montana State Hospital Warm Springs

The Montana State Hospital Warm Springs exterior lighting consisted of a large variety of lights, including floods, yard lights, can lights, wall packs, and pole lights. A lighting project was completed replacing all of the exterior lighting with new energy-efficient LED lights. Over 280 lights were changed during this project. In addition to saving 413,920 […]

Livingston School District

Following a lighting audit and recommendations made by the Montana Resource Efficiency Program (MREP), the Livingston (Montana) School District is poised to save over $36,000 in lighting costs each year. The School District is comprised of five schools, which collectively serve a student body of some 1,400 students from late August until late May each […]