Rural America The Rise of New Natural Resource Economies in the Intermountain West
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With many western rural communities facing declining populations, services, and a lack of employment opportunities, this study highlights a more sustainable approach to rural economic development. Leaving behind the industrial, automated, and commodity production which rural communities historically relied upon, this research focuses on firms that are part of the New Natural Resource Economy (NNRE). This sector is multifunctional and includes various businesses that are tied into tourism, ecosystem services, natural resource management, and sustainable agriculture. With site visits and interviews conducted throughout Montana, Colorado, and Oregon, this research provides the current state of the NNRE, and the strategies that can help promote its growth.