Stories

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

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "Department of Toxic Substances Control" ...

  • Failures in the Golden State

    The Department of Toxic Substances Control oversees or has some part in regulating everything from nail polish ingredients to oil refineries, radioactive waste to metal recycling in California. At the heart of our series is the story of a department that’s divided, dysfunctional, and ineffective in fulfilling its mission to protect public health and the environment of the Golden State. We sifted through hundreds of pages of reports, memos, reviews, manifests and legal claims. We also analyzed thousands of records in the department’s hazardous waste tracking system to find out that more than 40% of the hazardous waste manifests in the DTSC’s database contain inaccurate information or are missing key details. Our reporting has held leaders accountable at the DTSC and compelled state lawmakers to call for an investigation of the department, including a legislative hearing this month (January 2014). Through a series of public records requests, we found out some of the department’s top leaders were investing in companies the DTSC oversees. Our reporting into the potential financial conflicts of interest prompted an investigation into deputy director Odette Madriago by the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). Ms. Madriago resigned from her position six weeks after our report aired. The FPPC investigation remains ongoing.
  • "Tainted Water"

    For more than 20 years, the harmful chemical perchlorate has seeped into San Bernardino County's groundwater. The seep is thought to have started at a local dump site; however, records about the site were lost in the late 1980s by "two state regulatory agencies." The problem wasn't reported again until 1997, but warnings were "dismissed" by the county. The site was "rediscovered" in 2001, but it wasn't until 2009 that the county got serious about stopping the chemical seep. It is estimated that the cleanup operation will be completed by 2013.
  • Friendly Fallout

    KCBS-TV reports "about the nation's first nuclear reactor designed to serve the public. The sodium-cooled reactor was situated in the foothills north of Los Angeles and literally lit up the tiny communities of Santa Susana, Agoura and Moorpark. (In 1959) there was a devastating accident at the reactor site when 13 fuel rods melted down. But the accident was shrouded in secrecy... On this, the 50th anniversary of the nuclear meltdown...(KCBS-TV) uncovered evidence of unusually high cancer rates in surrounding communities and cancer clusters resulting in many deaths... We obtained results of toxic chemical testing which showed dangerous levels of nuclear and chemical contamination at the plant and evidence the contamination has spread outside the plant's boundaries...."