The City of Helena makes energy efficient upgrades, and sustainable options a priority in every project it completes. Current Sustainability projects for the City of Helena include: 

1.Sustainability Audit/Plan

  • The Public Works Department, has recently released a Request For Proposal "RFP"(PDF, 114KB) to perform a sustainability audit on all municipal facilities to identify opportunities for energy efficiency, electrification, water conservation, renewable energy, and Electric Vehicle Charging Station (EVCS) installation.
  • Click the Project Summary(PDF, 141KB) for more information. 

2. Transportations Shop Solar Panel Project:

  • The City has started construction to install a 50kW AC ground mounted solar project at the City’s Transportation Shop located at 3001 E Lyndale.
  • This solar project will be the City’s first large scale renewable energy project.
  • Once operational, the project could produce up to 65,000 kWh of electricity per year. The City received a $50,000 Universal System Benefits grant from NorthWestern Energy to help partially fund the project that has an estimated total cost of $140,000.
  • Completion of the project is estimated for April 30, 2023. 

3. Electric Vehicle Charging Station

  • Two electric vehicle charging stations are to be installed, one at Jackson Street Parking Garage and the other at Bill Roberts Golf Course.
  • The goal of this project is to improve access to electric vehicle charging stations to reduce greenhouse gases and vehicle emissions

Water Conservation

Water Wise Helena(PDF, 55MB) is an informational booklet that provides information on how you conserve water and save money in your home! 

Want information on the City of Helena’s Water System Master Plan(PDF, 39MB)

For information on where Helena gets its water, and water conservation tips, check out the City of Helena’s Drinking Water Page

Renewable Energy Loan Program

The City of Helena offers a zero-interest Renewable Energy Loan program to help homeowners install energy efficient upgrades. The program provides loans of up to $12,000, that can be paid over 10 years. This program is meant for homeowners to add renewable energy systems, such as solar panels, to homes. 

Since the programs initiation in 2016, 48 Helena residents have taken advantage of this energy saving opportunity. There are a limited number of funds available each year, so please contact the City of Helena's Community Development Department for more information. 

Annual Sustainability Report

In 2017, the City Commission adopted Resolution 20347, requiring the preparation of an annual report to document specific activities implemented by the City, track greenhouse gasses, energy usage, and other resources such as water and recommend future sustainability measures for the City of Helena. The City of Helena continues to make energy efficiency and sustainability upgrades to buildings, parks, and practices. The information below outlines the upgrades and efficiencies for each calendar year as well as purposed projects for the future. Where applicable, the activity references the corresponding recommendation from the 2009 Climate Action Plan.(PDF, 3MB)

2022 City of Helena Annual Sustainability Report Coming this fall. 

2021 City of Helena Annual Sustainability Report (PDF, 325KB)

2020 City of Helena Annual Sustainability Report (PDF, 3MB)


Climate Action Plan

In 2007, City of Helena Commission passed Resolution 19530, recognizing that there is “sufficient scientific evidence to conclude that global climate change is occurring, that humans are contributing to it, and that reduction in greenhouse gases (GHG) is necessary in to avert the negative consequences of a changing climate.” Lowering GHG emissions will likely result in numerous additional benefits to the Helena community, including improved water quality, reduced energy costs, and improved waste and air pollution efforts. The passage of this resolution, allowed for the construction of a Climate Change Task-force, and for this task-force to give recommendation on the following categories:

  1. Energy Efficiency & Municipal Operations
  2. Water Supply, Treatment, and Delivery
  3. Transportation, Waste, Recycling, and Public/Private Partnership

These recommendations were compiled into what is now known as the 2009 Helena Climate Change Task Force Action Plan(PDF, 3MB). Over the years the City has pursued many of these recommendations and moved its GHG goals forward. The Climate Action Plan Summary below, lists the recommendations, their status, a short explanation of the steps taken by the City, and the results of such efforts.

Climate Action Plan Summary(PDF, 151KB)



Sustainability Spotlight

This month’s sustainability spotlight highlights Valley Sand and Gravel.

A new drop-off recycling bin has been placed at the former Valley Sand and Gravel Excavation site, off McHugh Drive. This location accepts steel and aluminum cans, newspapers and magazines, white and pastel office paper, and corrugated cardboard.

On average, the drop off recycling locations located around the Helena Valley divert 184 tons of recyclables per month. Keeping these commodities out of the landfill keeps our community clean and healthy, and these locations are cost effective to both the city and residents.

Thank you, Valley Sand and Gravel!