State lawmakers reintroduce CLEAR Act to address PFAS contamination

Published: Apr. 21, 2021 at 9:52 PM CDT
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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WBAY) - State democrats, as well as Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, have reintroduced a bill for the 2021-2023 legislative session they say will address PFAS contamination across the state.

PFAS, short for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are a group of human-made chemicals used for decades in multiple products such as non-stick cookware, fast food wrappers, stain-resistant sprays and some types of firefighting foams. The chemicals don’t easily break down in the environment, and have been detected in humans, wildlife, fish and in the groundwater, surface water, soil and air.

Action 2 News has previously reported on problems with the drinking water in the Marinette and Peshtigo area due to the chemicals used at the Tyco firefighting foam plant.

On Wednesday, Evers, as well as State Senator Melissa Agard (D-Madison) and State Representative Samba Baldesh (D-Madison) reintroduced Wisconsin’s Chemicla Level Enforcement and Remediation (CLEAR) Act. The legislation was introduced during the 2019-2021 biennium, but the bill wasn’t given a public hearing. CLICK HERE to read the legislation’s full text.

RELATED: INTERVIEW: Wisconsin DNR discusses PFAS monitoring

In the bill, there are some items which are also included in Evers’ Badger Bounceback agenda, including funding new positions at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources specific to implementation of a PFAS action plan, creating a PFAS municipal grant program for testing and remediation efforts by local governments, collecting and disposing of PFAS contaminated firefighting foam, funding statewide monitoring and testing initiatives and others.

RELATEDTyco facility reissued discharge permit by Wisconsin DNR

Officials with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources are working on the problem and monitoring the growing situation around the state.

RELATED: Plan for fighting PFAS chemicals in Wisconsin is released

As previously reported, Wisconsin health officials put together groundwater quality standards for a dozen man-made chemicals known as PFAS just last year. CLICK HERE for the full list.

RELATED: 3 BRILLIANT MINUTES: Putting an end to “forever” chemicals

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