Contact: Jenni Birkholz, DNR environmental business support coordinator
MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is requesting public comments on a proposed Green Tier–Tier 2 contract with Madison Gas and Electric Company (MGE) in Madison, Wisconsin. This contract is an expansion of MGE’s Green Tier participation, which began at a singular facility on Blount Street and now includes its operations in southern and central Wisconsin.
Tier 2 participants negotiate customized contracts with the DNR and interested stakeholders. These contracts enable significant environmental improvements and can allow for some regulatory flexibility. MGE is requesting flexibility in its annual compliance audit schedule, allowing for all operations under the scope of the agreement to be audited over a three-year cycle as defined in the proposed contract. The DNR welcomes comments from MGE’s customers, neighbors and stakeholders through Nov. 27, 2020.
“MGE takes a proactive approach to advancing the culture and continual improvement of environmental and sustainability practices throughout our organization,” said Jeff Jaeckels, MGE’s director of safety, sustainability and environmental affairs. “We look forward to this expansion of our longtime participation in the DNR’s Green Tier program to all of our operations, further building on our environmental commitment.”
Future goals for MGE’s expanded scope of operations under this proposed contract include conducting a risk review of MGE’s environmental response plan, adding environmental emergencies to its “all hazards response” process, removing and replacing PCB-contaminated transformers, continuing to implement the “fleet alternative vehicle policy” by adding electric and electric-hybrid vehicles when operationally practical and continuing the conversion to LED lighting at MGE facilities.
Participants in Tier 2 of Green Tier satisfy rigorous eligibility requirements. Applicants must have an environmental management system (EMS) – a plan-do-check-act tool that helps a company understand its environmental impacts – already in place at the time of application. The EMS developed by MGE was greatly expanded to encompass the operations under the contract and meets the requirements of a Green Tier functionally equivalent EMS as noted in law.
The DNR will hold a public information meeting concerning the proposed MGE contract for Tier 2 of Green Tier on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at 1 p.m. Due to state measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, this hearing will be held via Zoom rather than in person. Participants can join online via Zoom or via phone by calling toll-free at 312-626-6799, meeting ID 991 1574 1986.
The DNR will accept written comments until Nov. 27, 2020. Comments and requests should be directed to Jenni Birkholz at jennifera.birkholz@wisconsin.