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Wisconsin Development News Green - Environmental Ideas That Make Economic Sense

This Weeks Articles for 3/26/2023 ...

  1. Landmark climate law includes nearly $20B to help farmers adopt conservation practices...
  2. More people seek outdoor recreation in Wisconsin as state funding for conservation declines...
  3. Corporate investment could improve climate-tech innovation...
  4. Barred Owls starving in northcentral Wisconsin...
  5. U.S. is recommending low limits for `forever chemicals.` Many Wisconsin communities have tested over it....
  6. Wisconsin’s only fully aquatic salamander, the mudpuppy, is the focus of new DNR research effort ...
  7. How to dispose of your household chemicals safely...
  8. EPA to examine whether PFAS pollution from Tyco`s facility could fall under Superfund law...
  9. Where are America`s most toxic watersheds that harm human health and the environment?...
  10. Within range? Potential buyers weigh incentives and Wisconsin`s charging infrastructure amid EV transition...
  11. Wisconsin DNR seeks volunteers for frog and toad surveys ...
  12. Inaugural Bassam Z. Shakhashiri Public Science Engagement Award recognizes excellence in outreach...
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Clean Wisconsin Pushes Environmental Protection Agency for Tougher Soot Standard

WISCONSIN (WTAQ-WRN) — For the first time in a decade, the Environmental Protection Agency proposes updates to the standard for soot. Clean Wisconsin Energy Manager, Ciaran Gallagher, says that’s still far short of what’s needed to protect peoples’ health

“The proposed lower standard from the EPA is better but doesn’t improve the air quality here in Wisconsin which is why that we felt the need to propose an even lower standard.” said Gallagher.

Soot is fine particulates linked to asthma, heart disease and even premature deaths. Gallagher says six Wisconsin counties – Outagamie, Waukesha, Grant, Eau Claire, Milwaukee and Dane could see improved health outcomes with a stronger standard...

   ...Full Story Here

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An Evening with Dr. Jane Goodall: Inspiring Hope Through Action

Esteemed ethologist and conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall, who was the first scientist to observe the human-like behaviors of chimpanzees, will share her story and hope for the environmental future at a free Wisconsin Union Directorate (WUD) Distinguished Lecture Series (DLS) Committee-hosted talk on March 26 at 7 p.m. in Shannon Hall at Memorial Union.

The event, titled “An Evening with Dr. Jane Goodall: Inspiring Hope Through Action,” will include a 90-minute speech and Q&A with Goodall. The event is free, but tickets are required. Current University of Wisconsin–Madison students may register for tickets on March 6 at 10 a.m. Students will require a promo code, which they will receive via email, to acquire their ticket. Any remaining tickets will become available to the general public on March 8 at 10 a.m., with a limit of two tickets per person. Starting March 8 at 10 a.m., all are welcome to register for the virtual livestream. Ticket registration for the in-person event and the livestream is available here...

   ...Full Story Here

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New EPA plan to deal with wandering and in-state air pollution

Cement, glassmakers, natural gas and paper mills among new industries subject to federal agency`s proposed rules

A plan from the Environmental Protection Agency is proposing tougher pollution standards aimed at reducing smog, but some industrial groups complain the changes will be too costly.

Through the Good Neighbor Plan, introduced in March last year, the EPA would ramp up controls to limit pollution from coal- and gas-fired power plants and, for the first time, regulate certain industries in Wisconsin and 22 other states whose emissions affect air quality in other states. Among those which might be affected — if the plan is approved — are industries like cement makers, glassmakers and paper mills...
   ...Full Story Here

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Wisconsin tribes call for state cooperation on topics including health care, gaming, environment

Wisconsin`s 11 federally-recognized tribes are calling for more state cooperation on health care, casino revenue, and protecting the environment.

Robert Van Zile, chairman of the Sokaogan Chippewa Community, spelled out details when delivering the annual State of the Tribes speech Tuesday at the State Capitol...

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   ...Full Story Here

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Brown County CAFO must pay $320K for wastewater violations

CAFO operated illegally, allowed manure to run off into nearby waterways

Operators of a large-scale dairy farm in Brown County must pay $320,000 for 19 violations of Wisconsin wastewater laws under a settlement reached with the Wisconsin Department of Justice.

Roy Pansier, Glen Pansier, and Jason Pansier with Ledgeview Farms in De Pere operated their concentrated animal feeding operation, or CAFO, for years without a required wastewater discharge permit, according to a DOJ news release issued Friday. A 2021 complaint filed in Brown County states the farm doubled in size from 780 to 1,568 animal units between 2013 and 2014 without applying for a permit...

   ...Full Story Here

Notes: Why not let them keep the 320K and instead require that they digest the manure and heat the effluent. Penalties do not help our acquirer long term, solutions do.

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Landmark climate law includes nearly $20B to help farmers adopt conservation practices

Wisconsin farmers say assistance is needed to adopt climate-smart practices

The nation’s landmark climate law is providing billions to help farmers adopt practices to combat climate change and boost rural clean energy development.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan and State Senate Minority Leader Melissa Agard, D-Madison, said in a virtual news conference Tuesday that the nearly $370 billion Inflation Reduction Act will help farmers advance conservation practices. They pointed to nearly $20 billion provided under the law over five years that will help expand access to assistance under voluntary conservation programs, as well as almost $14 billion for clean energy development in rural areas...

   ...Full Story Here

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Wisconsin farmers are `carbon curious,` but few participate in offset programs

For some Wisconsin farmers, carbon credit markets remain an elusive solution to make money, curb climate change

Even as momentum builds around carbon credit markets, few farmers in Wisconsin are participating, industry leaders say. 

Will Fulwider is the regional crops educator with the University of Wisconsin-Extension in Dane and Dodge counties. He said there`s a larger pool of people interested, but many farmers are unsure if this is the best time to sign up...

...Nationally, agriculture is the source of roughly 10 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Through carbon credit offset programs, farmers can engage in practices like planting cover crops or reducing tillage to help store carbon in the soil. Companies can buy that extra stored carbon to offset their pollution, or to be net-zero in their emissions...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: We need to work with farmers and demonstrate the best practices to manage crops and land use...

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Tom Still: Wisconsin bringing products, ideas to the world — and close to home

RACINE — Most of us don’t give any thought to the garbage disposal in our kitchen. The people at InSinkErator in Racine do that for us every day.

After touring the company’s 5-year-old headquarters and testing center near Racine, I came away knowing some talented people think daily about what we might throw down the disposal — even if the rest of us don’t...

At InSinkErator, for example, the drive to make disposals tougher and quieter goes beyond what consumers want to see and hear. There is an environmental component tied to keeping food waste out of landfills, where it creates methane with 80 times the warming power of carbon dioxide once it reaches the atmosphere...
   ...Full Story Here

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What EPA’s nationwide PFAS rule means for Wisconsin drinking water

 New federal limits on hazardous “forever chemicals” could mean cleaner, safer drinking water. But some residents may see higher utility bills.

A new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposal issued Tuesday would tighten limits on toxic “forever chemicals” in Wisconsin’s drinking water.

If finalized, the rule would establish the first national standard for PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, in public water supplies, bringing uniformity to a jumble of state regulations...

   ...Full Story Here

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New Limits On Toxic `Forever Chemicals` Coming: What It Means In WI

WISCONSIN — The Environmental Protection Agency is moving to impose new limits on “forever chemicals” — a class of chemicals linked to infertility, thyroid problems and several types of cancer — that could cost billions of dollars to remove, especially burdening Wisconsin`s smallest communities...   ...Full Story Here

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More people seek outdoor recreation in Wisconsin as state funding for conservation declines

Outdoor recreation boomed during the pandemic and has remained elevated.

While the industry grows, state funding for outdoor-related programs has steadily declined according to a new report from the Wisconsin Policy Forum.

Knowles Nelson Stewardship Program

One of those programs is the Knowles Nelson Stewardship Program. It was created in 1989 to buy land for conservation, purchase land easements, and fund projects like boat ramps, trails, and bridges.

The program generally uses 20-year general obligation bonds backed by the state’s full taxing authority...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: I remain a huge fan of The Knowles Nelson Stewardship Program. I would hope that we could tweak it a bit and create some conservation subdivision housing projects on the edge of environmentally sensitive and interesting lands. If we do not work on this developers will develop our lakes, rivers, trails, wetlands, and other areas without our input. Like the lakes in Dane county, you will need to be a millionaire to live near water and access will become more and more limited...

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Columbia County asks Wisconsin regulators to deny large solar project

he Columbia County Board is taking two approaches to voice concerns with large-scale solar projects. The first asks that a proposed project be denied, the second requests that Wisconsin lawmakers revise the law.

The County Board voted on Wednesday, March 16 in favor of two resolutions regarding solar projects. One of the resolutions is the Planning and Zoning Committee’s list of concerns with a proposed project in the form of public comment. This resolution includes asking the Public Service Commission to deny the application.

High Noon Solar is a proposed large-scale solar project in the towns of Arlington, Leeds, Lowville and Hampden. It could be a patchwork of solar arrays on approximately 2,000 acres of private property with the potential of producing 300 megawatts. It is being developed by Invenergy...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: This is a cost profit issue, smaller rooftop arrays are more expensive to install and connect. We need an every new building, especially on public structures, requirement to jump start a more distributed network. Until then, larger systems will be build to replace older more costly coal plants. It is never easy and this is an ever changing technology issue. Like computers before, we will be amazed where we are in 20 years....

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Corporate investment could improve climate-tech innovation

Corporate investments in climate-tech start-ups are a growing but overlooked aspect of energy innovation. According to a new report from Morgan Edwards, a professor at the La Follette School of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and her lead co-author at University of Maryland, these investments should be more fully considered as methods to advance climate technology. The report was published in the journal Joule on March 17.

Start-up companies have the potential to rapidly commercialize innovation, but they don’t always have the resources to make such ventures successful. Corporations, on the other hand, tend to have the resources that start-ups lack, like access to global markets and supply chains, manufacturing facilities and experience across the energy system...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: Good read and interesting, but can I point out companies are a little shy when it comes to the environment because it is an area where you can be penalized for doing good. Leed certification is a prime example, it can be very expensive to qualify for certification and you can be penalized for opting out of a technology like waterless urinals. It can also price a building for lease out of the market. Finally extremely efficient buildings, low E, LED, Heat Pumps, GEO thermal, Air filtration, Foam Insulation, Recycled Materials and more are often not even on the list.

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`Are we poisoning ourselves?`: `Forever chemical` levels are so high in a Northwoods town that filtration might not work

TOWN OF STELLA – "Forever chemicals" always felt like a big city problem to Greg Golden.

The chemicals didn`t really seem like a pressing issue for a small community where the largest form of excitement is when small planes dust the fields of potatoes with pesticides, Golden said. That was until his neighbor`s private well was selected for sampling by the state, and showed levels of PFAS hundreds of times over the state limits for drinking water...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: We may need to go into a deeper water aquifer in some cases. This become problematic when ag and industrial users tap into this aquifer first making it less accessible. We need a plan!

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‘People don’t come north to see stumps and blacktop’: Wisconsin’s largest land conservation project in state history faces roadblocks

Debates about tax revenue, land use, housing and employment needs sit at the center of a proposal to conserve the Pelican River Forest in northwestern Wisconsin.

The future of Wisconsin’s largest land conservation in state history is uncertain as leaders debate the project’s economic and environmental impact.

The Pelican River Forest is a roughly 70,000 acre forest and wildlife corridor in northeastern Wisconsin, east of Rhinelander.

The Conservation Fund, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to environmental preservation and economic development, bought the Pelican River Forest in 2021. The organization is now looking to purchase a conservation easement, an agreement with the state which secures a permanent protective status for the land in exchange for public access and logging rights, among others, under the Managed Forest Law program...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: We have wonderful natural resources and land. I am wondering if we could use Planned development to generate income to preserve the natural aspect of areas like this. Smaller homes and cabins on small lots with a 70,000 acre backyard has to be attractive to many. Working together make more sense to me than fighting. And the people that come to see the natural beauty need a place to stay and the people that run the restaurants, stores, shops, and outfitters need a place to live. The taxes generated on 700 of the 70,000 could cover the needed services if planned right.

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WI Eyes Deicer Training to Curb Salt Pollution

Spring is almost here, but Wisconsin can`t rule out the occasional snowstorm over the next few weeks, potentially resulting in more ice-melting products being used.

Amid environmental concerns, a proposed bill aims to encourage training for applicators.

This week, a state Senate committee heard testimony over a plan to create a voluntary de-icer certification program. The Department of Natural Resources would be tasked with establishing training for individual commercial applicators, who would learn methods for spreading snow- and ice-melting products designed to protect water quality...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: This is neded but there is also a cost associated with equipment and product that may not be in a smaller communities budget...

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A Wisconsin environmental enforcement law is being challenged. Could the case jeopardize the ability to respond to disasters?

MADISON – Environmental advocates are warning efforts to overturn one of Wisconsin`s strongest water and air protection rules could result in hampering the state`s ability to quickly address situations like the derailment of a train carrying toxic chemicals.

A number of environmental advocates raised concerns over the effort by Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, the state`s largest business lobby, to alter the "spills law," which allows the Department of Natural Resources to identify a toxic substance, require its clean up and ensure that the cost is borne by the company responsible rather than communities....
   ...Full Story Here

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Barred Owls starving in northcentral Wisconsin

Barred Owls in North Central Wisconsin can’t get enough to eat right now.

That’s because a thick snowpack with layers of ice prevents them from plunging through the snow to get to the mice they eat.

The Raptor Education Group based in Antigo says it’s a very difficult time for Barred Owls.

They have many starving Barred Owls in their care, with more coming in.

They’re also getting many calls about owls not moving or semi-conscious in yards.

They ask that people call the Raptor Education Group at 715-623-4015 for advice on how to capture a Barred Owl if you see one you can approach...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: I love these little guys and they eat mice, perfect. If you see one in distress call the number in the article. AND Send me a picture, if I can help save just one it will be a good year!

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EPA Announces $21M in Research Grant Funding to Investigate Cumulative Health Impacts of Climate Change on Underserved Communities

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $21,410,211 in grant funding to 16 institutions for community-based research to examine how climate change may compound adverse environmental conditions and stressors for vulnerable populations in underserved communities.

“Our efforts to address climate change must prioritize the health and wellbeing of those who are most vulnerable to its impacts,” said Chris Frey, Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Research and Development. “The research announced today will help us to characterize the cumulative impacts of climate change on the health and wellbeing of our most underserved communities so that we can work to mitigate these impacts and improve resilience.”...

  • Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisc., Leveraging a public school district and schoolyard spaces to confront climate health inequities in a low-income, urban community of color...

   ...Full Story Here

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Environmental activists speak out against WMC

WISCONSIN -- (WAOW) A group of five environmental activists are speaking out against Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce after they say the organization is suing to overturn the 1978 Spills Law, a law that gives the state the ability to respond quickly to toxic spills, and punish those responsible for spills. 

Tom Kilian with Citizens for a Clean Wausau, said, "We have made progress in large part thanks to the legal authority provided by the Spills Law, and without the Spills Law, we would have no legal recourse for holding polluters accountable."

WMC saying the in the lawsuit that the DNR uses the Spills Law to bully landowners who do not immediately report that hazardous materials have been found on their land. Kilian voicing his outrage, saying, "It is inconceivable to me that WMC, the most powerful lobbying group in Wisconsin, would use its resources to make Wisconsinites like my family and neighbors here, more vulnerable to the release of toxic substances."...

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Environmental agencies raise concern over hazardous spills lawsuit

   ...Full Story Here

Notes: We need to sit dow with businesses and DNR and get the Spill Laws up to to date and stronger. The courts will not accomplish this and no improvements to the statutes will be made regardless of the outcome.

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U.S. is recommending low limits for `forever chemicals.` Many Wisconsin communities have tested over it.

MADISON — When the Environmental Protection Agency last week released new guidelines for how much PFAS should be allowed in public drinking water systems, it left officials in Mosinee concerned.

The city of 4,500 in northern Wisconsin knows it has elevated levels of at least one PFAS chemical — PFOS —in its public water system. But while that contamination amount is now above federal recommendations, it remains well below state standards.

“The city is concerned whether there is currently technology available to reduce PFAS to the EPA’s proposed standards and the significant cost,” said Mosinee City Administrator Jeff Gates in an email...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: I did suggest this might happen! We need to focus on affordable solutions for treatment and long term elimination...

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Local governments band together on climate issues

— A local government coalition focused on climate issues aims to ensure residents get their “fair share” of federal resources coming to Wisconsin.

That’s according to Erick Shambarger, Milwaukee’s director of environmental sustainability and co-founding member of the Wisconsin Local Government Climate Coalition. In a recent interview, he said the group helps members share ideas and find opportunities to collaborate.

“Obviously with the federal infrastructure bill and the Inflation Reduction Act, I mean there’s a lot of opportunities,” he said, referencing the billions of federal dollars Wisconsin is expected to receive. “So the coalition is just a good forum for local governments that are interested in these issues.” ...

“Many communities that don’t have staff focused on sustainability, clean energy policy may not even be paying close attention to what the federal opportunity is going to create for Wisconsin,” he said. “We’re just trying to stay ahead of the game here.”

The new Website is Here:

   ...Full Story Here

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Wisconsin’s only fully aquatic salamander, the mudpuppy, is the focus of new DNR research effort

Wisconsin’s mudpuppies are finally getting some attention. 

The state Department of Natural Resources is expanding its research efforts into the state’s only fully aquatic salamanders through a project largely funded by the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin.

“This is a big first step to make sure we have accurate distribution data for the state,” said Rori Paloski, a conservation biologist with the DNR who works with amphibians and reptiles...

   ...Full Story Here

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Co-op Leader to Congress: Environmental Review Process Must Be Streamlined

The federal environmental review process takes too long, costs too much and makes it more difficult for electric cooperatives to provide reliable, affordable power to their members, a Dairyland Power Cooperative leader told a House committee Tuesday.

“Electric cooperatives like Dairyland play a leading role in the ongoing transformation of the electric sector and often need to obtain permits or other authorizations from federal agencies to construct and maintain electric generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure,” John Carr, vice president of strategic growth at the Wisconsin-based generation and transmission co-op, told members of the House Natural Resources Committee....
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: I am amazed how difficult it is to shut down a coal plant.

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How to dispose of your household chemicals safely

ASHWAUBENON (NBC 26) — March 19-25 is National Poison Prevention Week.

According to the Wisconsin Poison Center, since 2010, more than 425,000 people have contacted the center for mishaps with poisonous items, and unintentional poisoning has been the number one cause of injury-related deaths since 2009 for Americans 25-64 years old.

Household items, like cleaners, oils and paints, can be poisonous if ingested or used incorrectly, and they can become a hazard to the environment if dumped down the drain or disposed improperly...

   ...Full Story Here

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Inflation Reduction Act Invests Over $120 Million in Proven Projects to Advance Climate Resilience, Conservation and Equity

WASHINGTON — The Department of the Interior today announced a more than $120 million investment from the Inflation Reduction Act to rebuild and restore units of the National Wildlife Refuge System and partnering State Wildlife Management Areas that have been affected by adverse weather events. The investment prioritizes projects that promote coastal resilience and climate adaptation, address invasive species threats, and provide for additional data collection needed to support successful natural resource resilience.

The Inflation Reduction Act is enabling the Department of the Interior to play a leading role in the transition to a clean energy economy, advancing key habitat restoration, land resilience and water projects and securing environmental justice for historically disadvantaged communities....
   ...Full Story Here

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Why fish consumption advisories in Great Lakes states like Wisconsin carry their own risks

Amid PFAS fears, oversimplified warnings could discourage residents from consuming a food central to Ojibwe lifeways.

Commercial fisher Bryan Bainbridge can net several thousand pounds of whitefish or herring from Lake Superior during a successful run, but his greatest gratification comes when he returns to the dock.

Sometimes people ask if they can have some fish. He takes pride in being able to provide.

The operation is more than just business for Bainbridge, 45, a former tribal chairman of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, one of six federally recognized Ojibwe tribes in Wisconsin.

“It’s a part of who we are and what we do to live,” Bainbridge said...
   ...Full Story Here


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EPA to examine whether PFAS pollution from Tyco`s facility could fall under Superfund law

Town of Peshtigo says EPA will conduct site inspection of PFAS releases

The Environmental Protection Agency has granted the town of Peshtigo’s petition to examine the release of harmful forever chemicals tied to a Marinette manufacturer of firefighting foam.

Last year, Peshtigo resident Jeff Lamont and Cindy Boyle, town chair, asked the EPA to conduct a preliminary assessment. They want federal regulators to gauge whether PFAS coming from Tyco Fire Products’ fire training facility may trigger liability to clean up contamination under the federal Superfund law...

   ...Full Story Here

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EPA proposes allowing year-round sale of cheaper, higher-ethanol gas blends in Wisconsin and seven other states

Wisconsin drivers would be able to buy lower-cost gasoline with a higher blend of ethanol year-round under a rule proposed Wednesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

An EPA rule dating to 2011 prohibits summer sale of gas with 15% ethanol, known as E15 or Unlimited 88, in Wisconsin and seven other Midwestern states due to concerns that the more volatile fuel would contribute to smog in warmer weather. The fuel was available in Wisconsin last summer under a waiver from the Biden administration in response to soaring gas prices. The waiver expired in September.

The new rule would go into effect in 2024...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: How many cars actually use E15?

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Local governments band together on climate issues; Evers backing federal dairy labeling bill

A local government coalition focused on climate issues aims to ensure residents get their “fair share” of federal resources coming to Wisconsin.

That’s according to Erick Shambarger, Milwaukee’s director of environmental sustainability and co-founding member of the Wisconsin Local Government Climate Coalition. In a recent interview, he said the group helps members share ideas and find opportunities to collaborate.

“Obviously with the federal infrastructure bill and the Inflation Reduction Act, I mean there’s a lot of opportunities,” he said, referencing the billions of federal dollars Wisconsin is expected to receive. “So the coalition is just a good forum for local governments that are interested in these issues.”

Those opportunities — and challenges — will be examined at a WisPolitics-WisBusiness event Thursday in Milwaukee. See below for event details and a registration link...

See more on the coalition:
   ...Full Story Here

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Nonprofits hope to raise $650K for social, health and environmental causes Tuesday

A Wisconsin nonprofit is hoping to raise more than $650,000 on Tuesday to support social and environmental justice.

The “Big Share” is an online day of giving hosted by Community Shares of Wisconsin and nearly 70 nonprofit members. This is the group’s ninth-annual campaign, and this year its theme is “Make Change Happen.”

   ...Full Story Here

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Where are America`s most toxic watersheds that harm human health and the environment?

Despite the United States passing a Clean Water Act nearly 50 years ago to dramatically reduce pollution and restore America`s waterways, toxic substances are still dumped into many water sources, threatening the health of people and ecosystems.

Industrial facilities discharged 193 million pounds of toxic substances into U.S. waterways in 2020, according to a report by the advocacy group Environmental America Research and Policy Center...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: We are on the list a few times but not as bad as others...

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A lawsuit over `forever chemicals` contamination in Marinette is now set for trial. What we know about the first PFAS case to go before a judge.

MADISON – A date has been set for the first-ever environmental enforcement trial in Wisconsin over contamination from "forever chemicals."

A three-week trial has been set for the end of 2024 in the state`s lawsuit against a maker of firefighting foam in Marinette, regarding the extensive plume of PFAS contamination extending from the business`s property...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: Interesting read, I remain concerned that rather than trying to resolve the problems we will become fixated on assessing blame...

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OPINION Commentary: Achieving climate goals in Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin

limate leadership in Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin could revitalize the Midwest. And the timing couldn’t be better.

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is the biggest clean energy investment in American history, generating tremendous opportunity for pro-climate state officials to pass bolder policy and take advantage of billions of dollars in new federal investments in clean energy technologies.

Recent Energy Innovation Policy & Technology LLC and RMI modeling using the new state Energy Policy Simulators finds just five policies can effectively cut emissions in any state—...

...Wisconsin: Time to deliver on climate plans for economic growth

In Wisconsin, Gov. Tony Evers and state offices have made plans to address climate change and move towards carbon-free electricity. In 2020, the Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change produced a detailed report on reducing statewide emissions and now is the time to execute. If adopted in Wisconsin, our top five policies would reduce emissions 80% below 2005 levels by 2050 and add 39,000 new jobs in 2030, add 82,000 jobs in 2050, and grow GDP 2.8% in 2050...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: Worth reading...

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Within range? Potential buyers weigh incentives and Wisconsin`s charging infrastructure amid EV transition

Cost, range anxiety and regulations may hinder switch to electric vehicles

George Bussey is already sold on electric vehicles. On a gray winter day, he navigates the snow-covered streets of Bayfield in his 2021 Chevy Bolt. Bussey, who lives just south of Ashland, said he’s already put about 17,000 miles on the four-door hatchback since he and his wife Dorota bought it two years ago.

"I just love this car," Bussey said. "This is my favorite car of all the cars I`ve had ... going all the way back to my used 1957 Cadillac."

Compared to a gas-powered engine, it runs quietly. And Bussey, 74, has also been happy with its range. At its best, the Bolt can go about 250 miles on a full charge. It also was the right price, he said, at about $30,000...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: We are getting there but still have a ways to go. You might want to look at Hybrid or Plug in Hybrids if "travel" is an issue. If you need a commuter car we are there now...

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Ken`s Pick - Electric Automotive Stories

   ...Full Story Here

Ken`s Notes: Every week in I aggregate a few articles on electric vehicles, these are national articles and often of personal interest to me...

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Viridi Energy Building Renewable Natural Gas Project in Wisconsin

Viridi Energy has begun construction on a landfill renewable natural gas project at the Marathon County Solid Waste Department’s landfill in Ringle, Wis.

The company says the project will convert landfill gas into RNG – more than 3 million GGE annually – that will be used for the transportation sector and other end uses.

“As the transition away from fossil fuels accelerates, our Marathon County project showcases how waste-to-energy projects can be a win-win-win...    ...Full Story Here
Ken Notes: Lets Watch watch watch...

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Wisconsin agriculture continues to pursue sustainable practices

When I hear the word “sustainability,” I think of the farmers and crop growers who are in tune with care for their land and resources to produce food and fuel for Wisconsin communities.

Merriam-Webster defines sustainability as “relating to or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged.” For more than 175 years, Wisconsin farm families have been caring for their animals and the land, and ensuring resources are available to farmers for generations to come...

One way Wisconsin farmers are implementing sustainable solutions is through digesters, which turn cow manure into energy. Microorganisms break down organic materials like cow manure or food waste in a process called anaerobic digestion. This happens in a closed tank, where there is no oxygen, called a digester. There, bacteria break down the cow manure and food waste, creating biogas, which can be used for electricity, heat, compressed natural gas and even vehicle fuel. There are currently more than 30 manure digesters in Wisconsin...

   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: Love the comments on digestors, the image choice was ethanol based also interesting.

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Milwaukee journalist explores phosphorus, one of the most perilous environmental issues of our time

Phosphorus is an element that’s critical to all life on earth, including the food we eat. But it’s also causing significant harm to our environment.

Milwaukee writer Dan Egan has taken on the topic in his new book called, The Devil’s Element: Phosphorus and a World Out of Balance.

Egan says its story folds in pollution, economics, the environment and history.

“Phosphorus has its tentacles in so many different things and you have to build an arc if you’re trying to keep a reader reading along,” Egan says. “It’s hard when you’re writing about something that is in every living cell.”

Phosphorus has made farming highly productive, but has also caused toxic algae blooms in Wisconsin’s waters.

“We have this legacy of over-applying phosphorus because it was like an insurance policy. It’s like when you’re cooking – if a little is good, a lot is better,” Egan says. “And now, as the farms are getting bigger, we’re applying manure in an arguably helter-skelter fashion in some cases.”...

   ...Full Story Here

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Hon Hai teams up on clean energy with We Energies in Wisconsin

Taipei, March 10 (CNA) Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. intends to partner with U.S.-based renewable energy supplier We Energies to develop clean energy on Hon Hai`s campus in Wisconsin.

In a statement released Thursday U.S. time, Hon Hai, known as Foxconn internationally, said it has signed an agreement with We Energies to install solar panels at Hon Hai`s Science and Technology Park in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin....

   ...Full Story Here

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OPINION: Corporate profits outweigh health, culture and livelihood

As farmers in Wisconsin and across the Corn Belt make planting decisions, the question always on their minds is, will income cover their expenses? The price farmers all over the world are paid is determined by the global marketplace. With Mexico being one of the biggest buyers of U.S. corn, Mexico’s planned ban on imports of Genetically Modified (GM) corn (over 90% of the US corn crop is GM) has farmers worried. Their worry should be whether planting GM corn and planting so many acres of GM corn is a sound decision...
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: So much more to discuss here. GMO has become the norm so where do we go from here. Soon all our dairy, beef, and pork will come from factory farms. We have to sit down and figure out our future and this is a global issue requiring global solution and input.

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Wisconsin DNR seeks volunteers for frog and toad surveys

Soon the night air will be filled with the sound of spring peepers emerging from hibernation.

As that happens, the Wisconsin DNR is looking for people to help survey what it is they’re hearing.

Wisconsin is home to 12 frog and toad species.

Each spring and summer since 1984, the Wisconsin DNR has asked volunteers to spend some time at night and share which frog calls they can hear...

   ...Full Story Here

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Some of our links... Many more at

Links we like supporting Wisconsin`s Environment and Business. You can also search 10 years worth of our articles: Search

USGBC Wisconsin
Focus on

The Water Council

WI Sustainable Business Council

Sustain Dane



dwest Environmental Advocates


Renew Wisconsin

Clean Wisconsin


Natural Heritage
Land Trust

University of Wisconsin Sustainable Management

USGBC Wisconsin

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Ken Notes: Share this and if you want to be included:
Call us - 608.334.2174 or Editor [at]

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Inaugural Bassam Z. Shakhashiri Public Science Engagement Award recognizes excellence in outreach

A conservation scientist with a goal of finding ways to equitably protect tropical forest biodiversity and a teaching faculty member whose outreach work has led to a method for teaching visually impaired students about nanotechnology have received the University of Wisconsin–Madison Bassam Z. Shakhashiri Public Science Engagement Award.

“The selection committees have named Zuzana Bu?ivalová and Andrew Greenberg the inaugural award recipients and I join in offering my congratulations,” says the award’s namesake, Bassam Z. Shakhashiri, emeritus professor of chemistry and the William T. Evjue Distinguished Chair for the Wisconsin Idea, who became part of the UW faculty in September of 1970 and retired in September 2021...

“The Wisconsin Idea is an important feature of who we are as members of UW–Madison, and the Bassam Shakhashiri Public Science Engagement Award is one way to recognize those who live this concept,” says Steve Ackerman, vice chancellor for research and graduate education...

   ...Full Story Here

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USDA Forest Service offers funding through Cohesive Fire Strategy grant program

While it might be hard to imagine with all the snow on the ground, Wisconsin’s busiest time of year for wildfires is growing close.

Two thirds of Wisconsin’s wildfires happen in the spring after the snow melts and before things start greening up.

In 2021, there were more than 1,000 reported fires that burned roughly 2,500 acres.

Jolene Ackerman is the Wisconsin DNR Division of Forestry’s Wildland Urban Interface program coordinator. She says just because Wisconsin wildfires don’t make the headlines like western wildfires do, doesn’t mean they aren’t destructive...

   ...Full Story Here

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ABOUT - Wisconsin Development GREEN News

Ten thousand environmentally minded business professionals, 500+ News outlets and reporters, and even a treehugger or two now read WDNGreen each week. Thank you!
Please share WDNGreen with a friend...   WDNGreen Network of Links... or Search WDNGreen...

Ken Harwood
Advocating for Wisconsin
Editor [at]

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AgSTAR’s New Digester Project Development Handbook

Hot off the “press,” AgSTAR’s updated handbook is a comprehensive compilation of the latest knowledge in the industry on best practices for anaerobic digestion and biogas systems.

For 26 years, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) AgSTAR Program has been helping farmers and communities across the United States develop and implement anaerobic digestion (AD) biogas systems. These systems are critical to reduce methane emissions from manure management operations, while also providing other environmental and economic benefits. As a trusted partnership program, AgSTAR helps educate the public on best practices for designing, implementing and maintaining digester projects and brings together leading experts to discuss opportunities and challenges for advancing the biogas industry.

AgSTAR’s newest resource, the Anaerobic Digester Project Development Handbook, is a comprehensive compilation of the latest knowledge in the industry on best practices for AD/ biogas systems. The goal of the Handbook is to ensure long-term project success for AD biogas systems by providing background and a framework for AD project development.
   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes:I would love to see Wisconsin become the leader in this technology! Every farmer and elected official in the state should download this.

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Coverage of local and national eco news for commercial development, home, transportation, food and community. We search for environmentally friendly news that makes economic sense for Wisconsin. ONLINE HERE. Please share with a friend. To receive WDNews GREEN on Monday of each week as an email you must subscribe - secure link to subscribe is here.

Want to comment, or have an idea: Ideas[at]

We may now need to build a coalition that is willing to lobby from a "greener" yet pro business perspective. Lots of HUGE issues: Sand Mining, CNG, LEED Alternatives, Focus On Energy, LED Lighting R&D, Cleaner Power Generation, Recycling, Power Lines, Electric Cars, Wind, Solar, Bio Fuels, Digestors, Green AG, Business Incentives...And of course the Greenest and Happiest of Holidays to you!

Please consider sponsoring WDNGreen!

WDNews GREEN will be emailed on Mondays, included in WDNews on Thursdays, and online all the time at: Each week we will find 10 to 20 articles from Wisconsin and across the Nation dealing with environmental issues. Our goal is to promote environmental excellence from a sound business perspective.

Our resource guide at the bottom of this publication will continue to grow, and you may add links, suggest articles, include your press releases, or comment by eMailing Me. As always thanks for reading, and if you would like to sponsor or get involved call 608.334.2174...   ...Full Story Here

Ken Notes: Please forward this to friends and colleagues who have an interest in our economy and environment. You may eMail Me Here.

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