Madison, WI – Today, the Natural Resources Board (NRB) considered recommended standards for two of the most harmful types of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals, as recommended by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR). Unfortunately, the NRB fell short of what is needed to address the PFAS crisis. Senator Melissa Agard (D-Madison) released the following statement:
“It is disappointing to see the Natural Resources Board continue to operate in a partisan manner, beholden to special interests, rather than upholding their duty to protect Wisconsin’s natural spaces and clean water. Today’s actions create a major setback in our state’s effort to address PFAS contamination.
“Failing to create the strongest standards possible related to PFAS, which have been found at high levels in waters all across Wisconsin, will undoubtedly lead to more drinking water and fish consumption advisories. It also continues to tie the hands of local officials who are doing everything they can to ensure the people they represent have access to clean water.
“PFAS contaminants are polluting water, posing huge concerns for public health and the health of our wildlife and natural spaces. This is a public health crisis. Water is life. No one should ever be without access to clean, drinkable, and usable water.
“These actions fall far short of what Wisconsin needs and the legislature must pass the CLEAR Act, which I introduced earlier this session. The bill would take a comprehensive approach to protecting our water from PFAS by establishing public health-based standards, procedures for testing, and a plan for cleaning up existing pollution. It would also give local governments the tools and resources they need to mitigate PFAS in their communities.”