top of page

Wed, May 15

|

Stevens Point

Presentation: PFAS: Our Love-Hate Relationship

PFAS, frequently called the "forever chemicals" are found everywhere in our lives. In this presentation you will learn the basics of this complex topic and become aware of where to find them in everyday life.

Registration is closed
See other events
Presentation: PFAS: Our Love-Hate Relationship
Presentation: PFAS: Our Love-Hate Relationship

Time & Location

May 15, 2024, 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Stevens Point, 1519 Water St, Stevens Point, WI 54481, USA

About the event

PFAS, frequently called the "forever chemicals" are found everywhere in our lives.  Created in a lab in the 1930s, per- and polyfluoroalkyls have a unique structure that makes them both hydrophilic and hydrophobic, making them the perfect grease and stain repellent.  PFAS change the surface tension on materials to which they are applied, making them perfect for non-stick cookware and easy-glide dental floss.  The carbon-fluorine bond, characteristic in all PFAS, is one of the strongest chemical bonds, making them resistant to breakdown at even extremely high temperatures.  This makes them perfect for use in firefighting foams used in complex, hard-to-fight fires.

Despite these qualities we have grown to love, we also now know they are correlated with a host of health issues.  They persist in the environment and bioaccumulated in animal tissue.  They have left legacy contamination in water supplies and soils.  They are like a guest who overstays their welcome and just won't leave.

In this presentation you will learn the basics of this complex topic and become aware of where to find them in everyday life and how each of us can make a difference in the change necessary to make a world with fewer PFAS.

Meleesa Johnson is the executive director for Wisconsin’s Green Fire, an organization dedicated

to conducting science-based research related to conservation of natural resources and

environmental protection, as well as the advancement of science-based policy. Prior to this,

Meleesa served as the director of solid waste management for Marathon County and Portage

County for over two decades. She has been adjunct faculty at University of Wisconsin Stevens Point Soils and Waste Resources Program and co-created the curriculum for both the introductory and advanced waste management classes.

Meleesa served seven terms as president of Associated Recyclers of Wisconsin (AROW) and

over the last 20 years has held leadership roles in both the Solid Waste Association of North

America-Badger Chapter and for the Wisconsin Counties Solid Waste Management Association.

She was appointed to the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Taskforce on Waste Materials Recovery and

Disposal (2005), the DNR’s Waste and Materials Management Study Group (2016-2023) and the

DNR’s PFAS External Policy Advisory Group (2021-2023). As a member of Wisconsin Green

Fire’s Science Council and Contaminants of Emerging Concern Working Group, she co-authored

two informational papers on PFAS and speaks around the state on the topic.

Join us on Wednesday, May 15th at 7:00pm for Meleesa’s presentation on PFAS. ALAS programs for the 2023-24 season will continue to be hybrid with the in-person presentation held at the Lincoln Center (1519 Water St., Stevens Point, Wisconsin) and available to view remotely live via Zoom. To view via Zoom, register at https://tinyurl.com/mrcx5zen. Find this link on our website under the Events-Presentations tab.

Share this event

bottom of page