Chuck Quirmbach

Innovation Reporter

Chuck Quirmbach joined WUWM in August 2018 as Innovation Reporter, covering developments in science, health and business.

Prior to that, he worked for Wisconsin Public Radio in Milwaukee and Madison, covering the environment, energy, and Milwaukee news of statewide interest.

He is a graduate of the UW-Madison.

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Chuck Quirmbach

If you use energy efficient LED light bulbs in your home, you partly have Chuck Swoboda to thank. He spent 16 years as CEO of Cree Inc., a company that helped bring LED lighting to the market.

Courtesy of Froedtert, the Medical College of Wisconsin, and UW-Milwaukee

Brain cancer is relatively rare. But depending on the type of that disease and the patient, the survival rate can be low. 

Most often, brain cancer occurs when cells spread from cancer in another part of the body. Medical experts say timely care decisions for the patients can be critical. The Froedtert and Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Network says a new smartphone app, designed by UW-Milwaukee, is leading to faster treatment.

Chuck Quirmbach

The transportation sector — that's people driving gasoline-fueled cars and using other vehicles — has become the single largest source of carbon dioxide pollution in the United States. So, despite some setbacks and concerns in Wisconsin, the push for more electric vehicles is expected to continue in 2020.

There are now more than 1 million electric vehicles (EV) on U.S. roads. California is leading the way. In Wisconsin, the percentage of drivers using EV is still less than 1%. But it's a dedicated group. 

Chuck Quirmbach

The Green Bay Packers season is over. Once again, the pro football team fell one game short of reaching the Super Bowl, by losing the NFC Championship contest to the San Francisco 49ers,  37-20, Sunday night in California.

The Packers trailed 27-0 at halftime, as the 49ers combined a strong offense and tough defense, and took advantage of Packer mistakes.

It was the fourth NFC Championship game loss for the Packers this century. Their only win came in 2011, on the way to defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV. 

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Officials providing security for the Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee this July have released a preliminary security footprint for the downtown area.

The footprint extends from Cherry Street on the north, to Clybourn Street on the south, and from 10th Street on the west, to Water Street on the east.  

Law enforcement says "enhanced security measures" within the footprint will not be in place until the weekend before the convention, which runs from July 13-16 at the Fiserv Forum and other downtown venues.

Courtesy of Erin Bloodgood (Bloodgood Foto) @bloodgoodfoto

Wisconsin's leading energy regulator says she hopes to create a roadmap this year for how Wisconsin can get all of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2050. Public Service Commission (PSC) Chairperson Rebecca Valcq announced the goal Thursday at a renewable energy conference in Madison, held by the group RENEW.

Chuck Quirmbach

The candidates for Milwaukee County executive are trying to spell out some differences on criminal justice reform, mental health and disability issues.

Five of the six people running to replace retiring incumbent Chris Abele took part in a forum Tuesday. The Wisconsin Disability Vote Coalition, the Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force and the Miracle Network co-sponsored the event. So, most of the questions pertained to what the next county executive will do on the social service issues that make up a big chunk of the Milwaukee County budget.  

During a ceremony at the White House in July 2017, a beaming President Trump announced Foxconn was coming to Wisconsin.

The world's largest contract manufacturer of consumer electronics wanted to be in America, Trump said.

"Investing many, many billions of dollars, right here in America, creating thousands of jobs," Trump said. "And I mean, American jobs, that's what we want."

To land the company, Wisconsin's then-governor, Republican Scott Walker, signed one of the largest tax incentive deals ever made between a state and a private company.

Chris McGrath / Getty Images

Wisconsin's Congressional delegation is heading back to Washington, and will get a briefing on the drone airstrike that killed a top Iranian general. Milwaukee Rep. Gwen Moore says she wants an explanation and may be ready to support limiting presidential military efforts.

Chuck Quirmbach

Solar energy in Wisconsin continued to grow in 2019, as more homeowners had rooftop panels installed and big utilities started building multi-panel solar farms.

Wind power is increasing more slowly in the state. However, developers are again coming forward with proposals for multiple turbines.

Nationally, researchers are working on ways to get even more energy from solar and wind, as states like Wisconsin aim to reduce their carbon emissions over the next few decades.

Chuck Quirmbach

People who rent a car to go on vacation or a business trip are finding more options for better gas mileage.  Some car dealers, traditional rental firms and even car-sharing companies have started renting gas-electric hybrids. But driving a hybrid isn't always the cheapest way to go. 

In October, I test drove a gas-electric hybrid car on my return trip from a Society of Environmental Journalists conference in Colorado. While recording my thoughts, the car radio was playing the 1950’s song “Earth Angel”:

Chuck Quirmbach

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers says state officials will meet with Foxconn to try to solve an apparent disagreement with the firm over potential taxpayer subsidies. He also says his administration is "pro-Foxconn." But the leader of Wisconsin's economic development agency promises clearer scrutiny of the Taiwan-based company's job creation claims. 

Darren Hauck / Getty Images

Updated Dec. 23, 2019 at 2:11 p.m. CT

Chuck Quirmbach

In the next decade, NASA is promising to send men and women back to the moon. Plus, there are international plans to start assembling a platform near the moon, called Deep Space Gateway, from which to set forth on missions to Mars or elsewhere in the solar system.

Chuck Quirmbach

News that the Wisconsin governor's office wants changes in the state's contract with Foxconn is being greeted with praise — and caution — in Racine County.

Foxconn says it continues to hire people. The company also says it's building a manufacturing and research center south of State Highway 11 in Mount Pleasant. 

READ: Reports: Foxconn Currently Ineligible For Tax Credits