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Nicola Preston, OnSite Energy

OnSite Energy is a locally owned solar power contractor based out of Bozeman that specializes in solar electric (photovoltaic) project development, design and installation. As OnSite Energy continues to grow, the owners have stayed committed to their core values of sustainability and conservation; never losing sight of the fact that the departure from a dependence on heavily polluting traditional energy sources is one of the most important aspects of the renewable energy industry. In an increasingly competitive market, maintaining focus on these environmental values isn’t as common as you may think despite the nature of the work.

Since I joined the team in 2016, I have helped the company achieve their B Corporation certification and launch a “Solar for Conservation” program that raises money for local conservation organizations through our residential sales. When the “We Are Still In” campaign came across my desk, it was a no-brainer for OnSite to take the pledge, and I’m writing today to encourage other Montana businesses to do the same.

Regardless of their politics, Montanans take the shared responsibility of public land ownership seriously, and regularly come together to protect the ecological integrity of the land, rivers and wildlife habitat that is increasingly at stake. As almost all of us know, reducing the amount of carbon-based emissions by switching to clean renewable energy is one of the most effective ways to accomplish these goals.

The current administration’s withdrawal from the Paris agreement in 2017 does not align with our values as a business or as Montanans. With the next big climate conference (COP24) starting this week, it’s time for Montana to show not only the rest of the country but the rest of the world that we are still committed to working towards the climate action goals established in the Paris agreement.

The We Are Still In campaign provides a platform for transparency and accountability on the sustainability initiatives of businesses, elected leaders, universities, faith groups and investors across the country.

Some of the action items OnSite Energy is committed to include helping our customers reduce carbon emissions by installing solar energy systems; community outreach and education on the positive environmental effects of renewable energy; advocating for renewable energy legislation; supporting local conservation and sustainability based organizations; and increasing the sustainability of our own daily operations.

Over 30 Montana businesses have already joined the We Are Still In Campaign and taken the pledge to support climate action to meet the Paris agreement’s goals. Will you join us?

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Nicola Preston is communications director for Bozeman-based OnSite Energy, Inc.

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