On Oct. 17, Gov. Tony Evers signed Executive Order #52, creating a Task Force on Climate Change. The task force is charged with advising the governor in developing a strategy on climate change by:
- Evaluating the science surrounding the impacts of climate change on Wisconsin citizens and the environment.
- Reviewing actions on climate change already taken by local governments and Native Nations.
- Working with universities, tech colleges, and businesses on research and manufacturing of technologies.
- Hosting public hearings throughout Wisconsin.
- Consulting with Tribal Governments.
- Making recommendations to address climate change and create a clean energy economy in Wisconsin.
- Working with the Office of Sustainability & Clean Energy, which Gov. Evers created in Executive Order #38.
The executive order directs the task force to issue an initial report to Gov. Evers by Aug. 31, 2020.
Members of the Task Force on Climate Change, which will be staffed by the Department of Administration:
- Chair – Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes, or his designee
- Department of Natural Resources Secretary Preston Cole, or his designee
- Department of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection Secretary Brad Pfaff, or his designee
- Department of Workforce Development Secretary Caleb Frostman, or his designee
- Rep. Greta Neubauer (D-Racine)
- Rep. Mike Kuglitsch (R-New Berlin)
- Sen. Mark Miller (D-Monona)
- A member of the Senate Republican caucus
- August Ball- Cream City Conservation, Milwaukee
- Joe Bragger- Bragger Family Dairy, Independence
- Kristofer Canto- American Family Insurance
- Stacy M. Craig- Environmental Stewardship Advocate, Mason
- Jeffery Crawford- Forest County Potawatomi Attorney General, Oconomowoc
- Robert Garvin- We Energies, Milwaukee
- Paul Graham- President of Central Waters Brewing Company, Amherst
- Anna Haines- University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point, Stevens Point
- Bill Hogseth- Wisconsin Farmer’s Union, Elk Mound
- Dylan Jennings- Bad River Band of the Lake Superior Tribe of Chippewa Indians and Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission, Odanah
- Sherri Johnson- University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute Director, Madison
- Amber Meyer-Smith- Clean Wisconsin, Madison
- Kathleen McGinty- Johnson Controls Inc
- Rob Palmberg- Dairyland Power, La Crosse
- Mike Peters, President of WPPI Energy
- Chris Pollack- Wisconsin Farm Bureau, Ripon
- Jeffery Rafn, Ph.D.- President of Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, Green Bay
- Doug Rebout, Roger Rebout & Sons Farms, Janesville
- Stephanie Salgado- Youth Climate Action, Madison
- Kerry Schumann- Wisconsin Conservation Voters, Madison
- Kirsten Shead- Milwaukee Water Commons, Milwaukee
- Mark Stoering- President of Xcel Energy, Eau Claire
- Bob Stone- IBEW Local 2150, Menominee Falls
- Krystal Westfahl- Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce, Minocqua
The executive order says climate change will “affect jobs across all industries,” including energy, manufacturing, construction, insurance, health care, and tourism. The executive order also mentions Wisconsin’s goal to ensure all electricity consumed in the state is carbon-free by 2050. In a radio address, Lt. Governor Barnes said he believes, with the help of the task force, Wisconsin could reach this goal “much sooner.”
Executive Order 52 also references Wisconsin’s membership in the U.S. Climate Alliance, which Gov. Evers announced in February, shortly after he took office.