Information about the relationship between agriculture and water quality, based on current science. WGF’s Cropland Management and Water Quality Team has developed several presentations, analyses, testimony, and comments to state government on this topic. Team members are volunteers with expertise in water quality, public health, and agricultural conservation.

WGF Members Author Sustainable Food Systems Paper

Agriculture uses more land and water than any other human activity, and our consumption demands continue to grow even as our resource base shrinks. A highly industrialized U.S. food system produces lots of food at seemingly low per unit cost. But our current system is taking a heavy toll on farmers and the environment, and …

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WGF and Partners Lead Climate Readiness Assessment

Throughout 2021, Wisconsin’s Green Fire (WGF) has led the development of a first of its kind effort to conduct a rapid, comprehensive assessment bringing together climate readiness and conservation-based economic opportunities in a rural Western Wisconsin county.  While state and federal governments play an essential role in developing climate policy and leading climate …

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State Legislature Reviews Water Quality Task Force Bills

A package of 13 bills put forward by the Speaker’s Task Force on Water Quality is making its way through the state legislature. The legislative session ends March 25, 2020. The total package, costing $10 million is considered a down payment toward the actions needed to protect drinking water in Wisconsin. Provisions to increase funding for county conservation staff and to reduce nitrate pollution line up with recommendations made by Wisconsin’s Green Fire.

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Scope of NR 151 – State Rules for Agricultural Practices to Reduce Nitrate Pollution of Groundwater in Sensitive Areas

Wisconsin’s Green Fire’s commented on the scope of NR 151 rule changes to address agricultural practices affecting nitrate pollution of groundwater in sensitive areas, Nitrate in groundwater is a significant concern for public health in Wisconsin. WGF comments stress the importance of agricultural producers, conservationists, and leaders working together to meet the challenge. NR 151 revision is a key state policy to meet the challenge.

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Nitrates in Wisconsin Waters – A Wisconsin’s Green Fire Policy Analysis

While Wisconsin has among the finest freshwater resources in North America, an increasingly large number of Wisconsin communities, homes, schools, and businesses find their water sources unsafe to drink. The water crisis in Flint, Michigan was a wake-up call about the hazards of water supplies we once assumed would always be safe. The total scope of the water quality crisis in Wisconsin today is much larger however than one community or one region. Wisconsin needs a drinking water solution equal to the magnitude of the problem. This paper lays out elements of that solution.

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Cropland Management and Water Quality – Phosphorus, Pathogens and Manure Management, Antibiotics and Manure Management

WGF releases a series of videos of members presenting on the relationship between cropping practices and water quality in Wisconsin, based on current science. This information draws from the expertise of water quality and public health scientists from DNR and the university system as well as agricultural conservation experience from WI Dept of Agriculture and …

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WGF Analysis: Nitrogen Pollution and The Need to Develop Nitrogen Criteria for Wisconsin’s Surface Waters

Background: Considerable research – both in Wisconsin and across the county – supports the need to control both phosphorus and nitrogen to adequately manage water quality problems in surface waters. In many lakes and streams, both nitrogen and phosphorus contribute to eutrophication and water quality degradation. However, nitrogen itself may be the most important nutrient …

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WGF Testimony to Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy on Senate Bill 31 Regarding CAFO permit fees.

Thank you Chairman Cowles and committee members. My name is Jim VandenBrook and I am here today representing Wisconsin’s Green Fire and am speaking for information only.

In short, Wisconsin’s Green Fire believes that SB 31 is an important step in the right direction toward improving the effectiveness of the state’s CAFO program to protect water …

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