Gov. Evers takes another step toward cleaner drinking water

MADISON – Gov. Tony Evers continued to demonstrate his commitment to clean drinking water with an executive
order yesterday that addresses a class of chemicals called PFAS, which are linked to adverse health effects such as
cancer and developmental issues.


Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of chemicals resistant to heat, water, and oil. For decades,
PFAS have been used for industrial applications and consumer products such as carpeting, waterproof clothing,
upholstery, food packaging, firefighting foam, and various paper products. They are often referred to as “forever
chemicals” because PFAS do not breakdown in the environment.


Gov. Evers’ order will establish a public information website to inform the public on PFAS and the risk these
chemicals pose to public health and Wisconsin’s natural resources. It directs the state to collaborate with
municipalities and wastewater treatment plants on screening programs to identify potential sources of PFAS. It
expands monitoring of PFAS in the development of fish and other wildlife consumption advisories to protect human
health, and it creates a PFAS Coordinating Council.


Executive Director Kerry Schumann had this to say on Gov. Ever’s order:

“It’s been a good month for drinking water in Wisconsin. This is the latest demonstration of Gov. Evers’ commitment
to addressing the water quality crisis in Wisconsin. PFAS are a dangerous pollutant. This order will shine a light on
this emerging threat, and give communities important resources to address it. We applaud Gov. Evers’ efforts to help
protect drinking water. Now, we look to the legislature to act. Senate Bill 302, or the CLEAR Act, would set strong
standards regarding PFAS. The legislature should pass it as soon as possible so that Wisconsin can begin to protect
its citizens.”