Montana’s Natural Resource Information System

Established in 1985 by the Montana Legislature, the Montana Natural Resource Information System (NRIS) was designed to simplify the task of identifying and acquiring natural resource information. As a program of the Montana State Library, NRIS’s mission is to make information on Montana’s natural resources easily and readily accessible. Serving government agencies, business and industry, and private citizens, NRIS operates a clearinghouse and referral service to link users with the best sources of information and service.

The Montana State Library houses the NRIS program for two reasons: The State Library is a neutral agency with no bias in providing information, and the State Library has the mission of providing access to information.

NRIS Has Three Main Programs

The Natural Heritage Program focuses on biodiversity information: plants, animals and natural communities, emphasizing those that are rare, threatened or endangered.

The Water Information System is a starting point for persons needing; information about topics such as water quality, groundwater, surface water, water rights, climate data, and more.

The Geographic Information System (GIS) provides maps, map data, analytical services, and technical assistance for the growing number of users of computerized mapping programs.

NRIS Information:

Who does NRIS Serve?

Example NRIS Services

NRIS Program Goals

Staff Names, Phone Numbers, & Email

NRIS Statutes

NRIS History

State Agency Libraries:

Census & Economic Information Center

Department of Fish, Wildlife, & Parks

Montana Historical Society

Legislative Library

Department of Natural Resources & Conservation

Office of Public Instruction Resource Center

Public Service Commission

State Law Library

  • Montana State Library
  • P.O. Box 201800, 1515 East 6th Avenue
  • Helena, MT 59620-1800
  • Phone: (406) 444-3115
  • Fax: (406) 444-0266
  • msl.mt.gov