Susan Bence

Environmental Reporter

Susan Bence entered broadcasting in an untraditional way. After years of avid public radio listening, Susan returned to school and earned a bachelor's degree in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. She interned for WUWM News and worked with the Lake Effect team, before being hired full-time as a WUWM News reporter / producer.

Susan is now WUWM's Environmental Reporter, the station's first. Her work has been recognized by the Milwaukee Press Club, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association.

Susan worked with Prevent Blindness Wisconsin for 20 years, studied foreign languages at UWM, and loves to travel.

» Twitter: @WUWMenviron

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Environment
2:59 pm
Mon March 5, 2012

Visit to the Solar Farm

Convergence team installs solar panels at its solar farm.

A local solar farm brings cutting-edge technology to Wisconsin. Susan Bence is WUWM’s Environmental Reporter. The 9th annual Green Energy Summit is scheduled for Wednesday through Friday in downtown Milwaukee. Tomorrow on Lake Effect, we’ll learn about a company also playing a role in solar technology in Wisconsin.

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Environment
5:33 pm
Thu March 1, 2012

An Environmental Balancing Act? Wisconsin's New Wetland Law

Wetland area near Ashland

After weeks of heated debate, Wisconsin has a new wetlands policy.

Governor Walker signed a bill into law Wednesday that he and Republican lawmakers call a “job creator” because it makes it easier for businesses to build or expand.

Supporters call one of the law’s strengths, the requirement that applicants submit a mitigation plan to “make up” for affected wetlands.

According to WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence, we will likely hear more about that “compensation” clause, as the state implements its new wetlands law.

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Environment
5:41 pm
Fri February 24, 2012

A Sign of Sustainable Energy

Rotor being secured on Port of Milwaukee turbine

If your commute takes you over the Hoan Bridge – between downtown Milwaukee and Bay View - you have surely spotted a gleaming white turbine take shape.

It should go “on line” Monday.

Federal stimulus money – along with state and local grants funded the $600,000 project.

Its owner - the City of Milwaukee – wants not only to power the Port of Milwaukee building, but also showcase the city’s commitment to renewable energy.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence donned a hard hat to talk with workers during the final construction phase.

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Environment
5:45 pm
Wed February 22, 2012

State Senators Pin Hopes on Bipartisan Mining Bill

Penokee Range south of Lake Superior holds coveted iron ore stash

A couple state Senators hope to slice through Wisconsin’s rancor-ridden mining debate.

A Florida-based company wants to extract iron ore from south of Lake Superior, creating hundreds of jobs, but only if the state does not drag out the permitting process.

Republican Senator Dale Schultz and Democrat Bob Jauch say they have drafted a 12-page bill addressing concerns some have with the lengthy bill the Assembly approved.

Jauch took a break from the Senate floor late Tuesday to talk with WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence.

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Environment
5:51 pm
Fri February 17, 2012

Mining 4: Scientific Perspectives

Momentum to streamline Wisconsin’s mine permitting process is rocketing ahead.

This week, to accelerate Senate action, Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald disbanded a bipartisan mining jobs committee - sending the Assembly’s bill to the budget committee.

It will hold a hearing Friday at the Capital, with a potential Senate vote next week.

Supporters of the faster permitting process say northern Wisconsin needs the jobs an iron ore mine would bring.

Critics insist the state needs time to study whether the operation would irreparably harm the environment.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence visited the region to gather residents’ views. She now concludes her series by chatting with researchers on the scene using what they know to predict how a strip mine might affect a pristine watershed.

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