Wisconsin’s Green Fire State and Federal Policy Issues for 2024

WI Green Fire, January 8, 2024

by Paul Heinen, WGF Policy Director

Top Issues for 2024

Every January, Wisconsin’s Green Fire (WGF) Policy Director, Paul Heinen, writes a “top issues” report on the policy issues that WGF is prioritizing for the year ahead. This is one way we keep members of WGF updated about the work ahead for this community of conservation experts. These are just some of the issues on which we engage with decision makers like legislators and other leaders around the State.

Contact us with your comments and questions.


Continue our work on the new DNR Groundwater Rule change, the new federal standards expected in February, SB 312 regulating PFAS at the state level and potential webinars on various PFAS issues.

Climate Mitigation/Energy:

There is a wide array of current issue activity happening across the state. We will support actions taken by state agencies, by local governments, by individuals and citizen groups. We have become the “go-to” group on Natural Climate Solutions statewide and will again apply for Daybreak Funding to engage further in the issue.

Agricultural Pollution Reduction:

Cooperative agreement funding has been received from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to pilot a new rewards-based model for payments to farmers who improve nutrient management and other conservation metrics. The idea has been championed by WGF in Wisconsin. WGF is partnering with Clean Wisconsin on this project.

Wake Boats:

WGF is publishing a report on the effects of wake boats on lake ecosystems. We may work on potential legislation to regulate wake boats. We will be at the Lakes and Rivers Conference to present our findings on the effects of wake boats on lakes.

Lakebed Grants:

Potential legislation may be introduced to allow the use of some lakebeds for developments along water ways.

Stewardship Program Re-authorization:

For the 2025-2027 state budget bill.


Other non-legislative priorities

  • Comment on PSC dockets on renewable energy
  • Work to increase Chronic Wasting Disease funds and effective regulations.
  • Monitor proposed Lake Trout Commercial Fishing currently being scoped out by DNR.


An important note:

In addition to the priorities listed above, over the next 3 years there will continue to be hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for environmental programs and energy incentives from the Biden Administration sent directly to the Governor. Recall that most of the current Federal Initiatives are 5-year funding programs.

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