Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 3. Energy Supply Emergency Powers

Energy Emergency Powers Of Governor

90-4-310. Energy emergency powers of governor. In addition to existing powers and duties, the governor has the following duties and special energy emergency powers, subject to the definitions and limitations in this part:

(1) The governor may, upon finding that a situation exists that threatens to seriously disrupt or diminish energy supplies to the extent that life, health, or property may be jeopardized, declare a condition or state of energy emergency, at which time all of the general and specific emergency powers enumerated in this section become effective.

(2) The condition of energy emergency terminates after 90 consecutive days unless extended by a declaration of the legislature by joint resolution of a continuing condition of energy emergency of a duration to be established by the legislature.

(3) The conditions of an energy emergency alternatively cease to exist upon a declaration to that effect by either of the following:

(a) the governor; or

(b) the legislature, by joint resolution if in regular or special session.

(4) In a declared state of energy emergency, the governor may:

(a) implement programs, controls, standards, priorities, and quotas for the production, allocation, conservation, and consumption of energy, including plans for the curtailment of energy. However, in so doing, the governor may impose controls, quotas, or curtailments according to the nature of the end use to be made of the energy consistent with existing transmission and distribution systems serving the geographic area affected by the energy emergency.

(b) suspend and modify existing pollution control standards and requirements or any other standards or requirements affecting or affected by the use of energy, including those relating to air or water quality control; and

(c) establish and implement regional programs and agreements for the purposes of coordinating the energy programs and actions of the state with those of the federal government and of other states, localities, and other persons.

(5) Except as provided in 90-4-313, this part does not mean that any program, control, standard, priority quota, or other policy created under the authority of the emergency powers authorized by this part has any continuing legal effect after the cessation of a declared state of energy emergency.

(6) Because of the emergency nature of this part, all actions authorized or required under this part or taken pursuant to any order issued by the governor are exempted from all requirements and provisions of the Montana Environmental Policy Act, including but not limited to the requirement for environmental impact statements.

(7) Except as provided in this section, this part does not exempt a person from compliance with the provisions of any other law, rule, or directive unless specifically ordered by the governor or unless impossibility of compliance is a direct result of an order of the governor.

History: En. Sec. 10, Ch. 473, L. 1979; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 387, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 78, Ch. 545, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 593, L. 2001.