Work Groups

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Wisconsin’s Green Fire has formed work groups to analyze issues and provide information based on science and our experience with natural resources management. Work groups are comprised of volunteer members with extensive experience in their topic area. Work groups:

  • write issue papers to explain natural resource issues
  • analyze proposed natural resource policy and legislation
  • provide testimony and comments on policy initiatives and implementation procedures
  • develop education materials
  • answer questions from citizens and the media.

Work groups and their current focus or priorities and work products to date are listed below.

In addition to the issue-based work groups, three committees are working on effective operation of Wisconsin’s Green Fire: Communications, Membership, and Development.

If you are a member interested in joining a work group or committee, please contact us at wigreenfire@gmail.com

Air Quality Work Group

  • Respond to state legislative proposals, policies, and rule changes
  • Keep tabs on significant air permit applications in Wisconsin
  • Watch for efforts to roll back state regulatory authority to protect air quality
  • Work with Climate Change Work Group

Work Group Chair: Jon Heinrich, jonfelixheinrich@hotmail.com

Aspiring Conservation Professionals (ACP) Work Group

  • Curate "Conservation Connections," an email newsletter aimed at students and young professionals.
  • Facilitate mentorships with WGF experts.
  • Manage WGF's social media platforms - Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

Read more about the ACP Work Group here!

Questions? Send an email to syp.workgroup@gmail.com

Work Group Chair: Loretha Jack, lorethajack@gmail.com

Climate Change Work Group

  • Produce and share science-based climate information with Wisconsin’s citizens
  • Work with partners to update recommendations from WI Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI)

Work Group Chair: Nancy Turyk, nancy.turyk@wisc.edu

Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CEC) Work Group

  • Recent focus is on PFAS contamination throughout Wisconsin
  • Respond to state legislative proposals, policies, and administrative rule making process through comment
    letters, written and oral testimony, participation on the PFAS External Advisory Group

Work Group Chairs: John Robinson,  robinson.john@hotmail.com and Mark Thimke, mthimke@foleyretiredpartners.com

Environmental Education Work Group

  • Monitor and respond to state policies on K-12 environmental and science
    education
  • Support WI Green Fire education activities

Work Group Co-Chairs: Dolly Ledin, daledin3@gmail.com and Karen Mesmer klmesmer@gmail.com

Environmental Rules / Water Resources Work Group

  • Agriculture and Clean Water
  • Metallic Mining
  • Non-metallic mine abandonment
  • High Capacity Wells
  • Surface Water Quality Standards - including water quality trading, sediment disposal, and PFAS
  • Oil pipeline construction

Work Group Chair: Paul LaLiberte, paul.lalib@charter.net 

Energy Work Group

  • Provides expertise and recommendations on sustainable, reliable, clean, and equitable energy sources in Wisconsin.
  • Works closely with the Climate Change Work Group to recommend policy and encourage public involvement in energy decisions.

View 2021 The Future is Now - Creating a 21st Century Energy Policy

Work Group Chairs: Kerry Beheler, kerry.beheler@gmail.com and Gary Radloff, glradloff@gmail.com

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Fisheries Work Group

  • Work with other WI Green Fire work groups on aquatic ecology issues
  • Support funding for fish and wildlife
  • Provide input on fisheries management plans

Work Group Chairs: David Vetrano, vetrano.david@gmail.com and Bill Fischer

Public Lands and Forestry Work Group

  • Develop foundational principles for work group based on sustainable forestry, wildlife habitat and biodiversity
  • Provide input on Silviculture Guidelines
  • Seek funding for economic / ecological study of the impact of deer on forests
  • Work with other organizations to support reauthorization of the Knowles-Nelson
    Stewardship program in support of public lands in Wisconsin.

Work Group Chairs: Ron Eckstein, roneckstein@charter.net 

Public Trust and Wetlands Work Group

  • Analyze and comment on proposed legislation, rules, and implementation guidance for state regulation of
    waterways and wetlands
  • Educate citizens about the Public Trust Doctrine and wetlands
  • Seek projects to evaluate impacts to public rights from legislation and legal action

Work Group Chairs: Michael Cain, cainmjc@gmail.com and Ron Grasshoff, rgrass66@yahoo.com

Wildlife Work Group

  • Chronic Wasting Disease
  • Deer Management
  • Species Plans (Ruffed Grouse, Bear, Wolf)
  • Funding for Fish and Wildlife

Wisconsin’s Green Fire supports efforts to address Chronic Wasting Disease as a member of the CWD Action Initiative

Work Group Chairs: Tom Hauge, thauge.1953@gmail.com and Adrian Wydeven, adrianwydeven@cheqnet.net