MADISON — April 22, 2014, marks the 44th observance of Earth Day, a day to promote responsible citizenship and sound policy to preserve natural resources and lay the foundation for a healthier future. The following are story angles and experts offered by Clean Wisconsin to assist in your environmental reporting needs. In addition to these angles, Clean Wisconsin’s staff is available for comment on environmental issues.

Cutting Carbon – The EPA’s draft carbon pollution rules are an important first for the nation that could mean our electric generating plants – currently the source of 1/3 of domestic carbon pollution – will have to cut emissions significantly. However, research suggests that not only is this manageable, but Wisconsin already has the right tools and programs in place to make significant headway with no headaches. Source: Keith Reopelle, Senior Policy Advisor, 608-251-7020 x11.

Managing Pharmaceutical Waste – A package of new laws aimed at combatting heroin addiction carries an important side effect for Wisconsin’s lakes, rivers, streams, and drinking water. The new law codifies ongoing local efforts to create programs for disposal of prescription drugs that will help keep the dangerous chemicals and compounds from being flushed into the water supply. These efforts build on the Department of Justice’s heroin prevention public awareness campaign “The Fly Effect” and the already successful upcoming National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, which next occurs on April 26. Source: Amber Meyer Smith, Programs and Government Relations Director, 608-251-7020 x16

Microbeads – Tiny plastic particles that make up many cosmetics and body scrubs have made their way from our sink and bath drains into the Great Lakes, raising a significant environmental challenge for the health of the world’s largest surface freshwater system. Some policy-makers and product manufacturers are embracing the issue under a growing demand for change as many consumers ask what they can do to help.  Source: Tyson Cook, Director of Science and Research, 608-251-7020 x27

Clean Wisconsin was born on Earth Day in 1970 and has grown to be Wisconsin’s oldest and largest environmental organization with staff expertise spanning a number of disciplines including legal, science, water resources and air quality.