The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

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Search results for "Chemicals" ...

  • Toxic Pipeline

    "Before China was implicated in the Panama poisoning, Bogdanich began investigating the incident because of similarities to another poisoning ten years earlier in Haiti," where a Chinese company was involved." Reporters at The New York Times traced the deaths from a cough syrup back to China. In the process, they exposed a frightening lack of oversight on imported products. When the FDA learned of the Times' story, it immediately halted all imports of Chinese glycerin. And more than 30 countries recalled Chinese made toothpaste containing anti-freeze.
  • Marshall Plant State's Top Mercury Polluter

    The PPG Industries Chemical Plant in Natrium, Marshall County, "is West Virginia's largest source of mercury, a toxic metal that can poison the brain and is especially dangerous to children and developing fetuses." Reports filed with the Environmental Protection Agency reveal the plant "emit[s] more than 1,200 pounds of mercury into the air." The plant pumps salty water "through vats of pure mercury" to make chlorine and "only nine U.S. plants still use this 111-year-old process."
  • A Natural Question

    Organic food costs consumers extra, sometimes twice as much or more than the "normal" equivalent. This expenditure is justified by the idea that organic foods are healthier. Yet, a Dallas Morning News investigation found that "some organic farmers and plant workers cheat. For example, they spray banned chemicals on their crop, or they raise animals using methods contrary to organic rules." Also, the organizations intended to certify the organic providers sometimes "bend the rules, or they're just woefully unqualified to enforce them." Overseas operations also raise concerns, as they export organic foods, but the USDA is unable to monitor these exports well, and cannot enforce violations.
  • The Hundred Year Lie: How Food and Medicine are Destroying Your Health

    This book "shatters dozens of myths being perpetuated by the chemical, pharmaceutical, and processed foods industries. It shows how early advances led to a buildup of industry, and how the profit motive then led companies and even our own government to ignore troubling signs of widespread illness and disease.
  • Toxic Cargo; Crowded Inland Rails at Risk for Dangerous Chemical Spills

    The investigation showed that Inland Southern California faces increasing risk of toxic spills from freight trains carrying chlorine, anhydrous ammonia and other deadly chemicals. The authors found a public unaware of the risk, local authorities unprepared and an industry with a questionable safety record.
  • The Deadliness Below: Decades of Dumping Chemical Arms Leave a Risky Legacy

    The Army secretly dumped at least 64 million pounds of chemical weapons off the coastlines of 11 states and 16 other countries, didn't tell anyone about it, and 20 years ago stopped checking the few sites that were ever inspected. The weapons are incredibly dangerous, likely are leaking, and will pose a threat for generations. The Army doesn't know where all the dumpsites are located, and admits that more likely exist than have been discovered.
  • Dangerous Sealant

    Based on a tip from a viewer, KCNC investigated the toxicity of a bathroom tile sealant called Tile Perfect Stand 'N Seal. They found numerous complaints from across the country about the sealant making people ill. The safety labels on the cans did not match the sealant producer's internal documents about product safety. The producer, called Roanoke Companies, announced a recall of 300,000 cans of sealant on the day the story aired.
  • "Toxic Traces"

    Minnesota Public Radio investigated the widespread environmental presence of chemicals once used to make Scotchguard. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency was not very aggressive in pursuing the matter, an attitude that is possibly explained by the fact that the commissioner of the agency was at one time an environmental manager for 3M. MPR laid out for the public, both by broadcast and on-line, what was behind the conflicting agendas of the government, 3M and the public.
  • Port Security

    This investigation by The Baltimore Sun looks at the lax and sometimes nonexistent security measures at the port of Baltimore following September 11. The report details significant security threats and the half-hearted attempt to address them with fake security cameras and faulty alarm systems.
  • In Harm's Way

    The Houston-Chronicle investigated and tested the air quality in four Texas communities that surrounded some of the state's largest industrial plants. Their tests showed that the plants in these communities were releasing "air toxics" into the air and were thus increasing the resident's risks of kidney and liver damage, along with many other serious heath problems. Furthermore, the Houston-Chronicle found that Texas air regulations are among the most lenient in the country.