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Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Chemistry, Biology, Civics

Resource Types

  • Articles and Websites
  • Scientific Papers or Reports, 8 pages

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Midwest, Wisconsin



PFAS Resources for Communities

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  • This resource provides links to a Wisconsin PFAS community response report, information about funding to improve drinking water infrastructure, and information that can help Wisconsin citizens understand and communicate the health risks associated with exposure to PFAS (perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances).
  • The report gives an overview of the state's testing infrastructure and procedures, while the funding link details the funds available for improving the availability of clean and safe drinking water in Wisconsin.
  • Access to clean water will become more variable as climate patterns change, making water pollution a significant concern for communities in many locations.
Teaching Tips


  • There is an excellent infographic linked on the bottom right of the webpage that provides a quick snapshot of Wisconsin initiatives and resources for addressing PFAS contamination.
  • By reviewing these resources, students can see how state governments take action to protect citizens' health and learn ways to empower themselves to monitor their environment and advocate for their health.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should understand that some chemicals do not break down in the environment and can have persistent and accumulating health effects, even years after their discontinued use.
  • Students should have some familiarity with laws and entities that protect the environment, such as the Safe Drinking Water Act, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
  • If students do not have a connection to Wisconsin, consider checking your local government health and environment websites to see if there is a PFAS action plan.


  • Before reading through this website, have students discuss how they think their drinking water is monitored and who is responsible for ensuring it is safe.
  • It is recommended to begin a lesson with the infographic describing PFAS, with students taking a few minutes to review the one-page document and forming a list of questions they would like to investigate.
  • Encourage students to discover whether they have access to public water or private well water at their homes and schools and investigate the testing protocols for different contaminants.
  • Ask students if they fish or consume locally-caught fish and then use the resources linked on the right side of the page to discover the consumption advisories for different fish in Wisconsin.
Scientist Notes
This webpage is a collection of resources for Wisconsin residents discussing Per- and Polyfluorinated Substances (PFAS) in drinking water. The page includes a report about the community and government’s response and plans to address PFAS in drinking water. The report explains what PFAS are, why they are a concern, and how people can test for and remedy PFAS in the water. The information presented is accurate and this resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Civics
      • D2.Civ.12.9-12 Analyze how people use and challenge local, state, national, and international laws to address a variety of public issues.
      • D2.Civ.13.9-12 Evaluate public policies in terms of intended and unintended outcomes, and related consequences.
      • D2.Civ.5.9-12 Evaluate citizens' and institutions' effectiveness in addressing social and political problems at the local, state, tribal, national, and/or international level.
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.6.9-12 Use disciplinary and interdisciplinary lenses to understand the characteristics and causes of local, regional, and global problems; instances of such problems in multiple contexts; and challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address these problems over time and place.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Science & Technical Subjects (6-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.4 Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 9-10 texts and topics.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.9 Synthesize information from a range of sources (e.g., texts, experiments, simulations) into a coherent understanding of a process, phenomenon, or concept, resolving conflicting information when possible.
  • National Health Education Standards
    • Standard 1: Students will comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
      • 1.12.3 Analyze how environment and personal health are interrelated.
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