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 "environment" ...

  • Filthy Rio Water a Threat at 2016 Olympics

    AP investigation into pollution levels of the sea and lake waters around Olympic city Rio de Janeiro where thousands of athletes and hundreds of thousands of foreign tourists will be exposed to sewage-laden waters this August. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXzECpf4lEw https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t71EpxrOXZw
  • Insane. Invisible. In Danger.

    Each year, Florida courts send thousands of patients to live in state-funded mental hospitals. They go because they are seriously ill, mentally broken and potentially dangerous. They need round-the-clock care to avoid hurting themselves or someone else. But in Florida, the care that patients, their families – and society – count on has given way to state-run chaos. Over the past six years, Florida has tried to run these hospitals on the cheap, quietly stripping them of $100 million in funding in order to plug holes in more politically popular programs. The result: mental patients are warehoused, cared for by startlingly few trained workers, and living in a violent environment that has led to the death and injury of patients and staff. And the state has kept it all secret.
  • Tijuana Tire Valley

    In an investigation that took us across the border, we explored the failure of the California state government to properly allocate funds collected from a consumer fee to prevent severe pollution of a bi-national region. We discovered California recycling fees were being used to ship tires to the border where they are sold and resold in Mexico; until the tires eventually wash back into environmentally sensitive lands in the United States. NBC7 Investigates uncovered a ballooning $60 million state "tire recycling management fund" that has since been targeted for better use by the Speaker of the Assembly. We followed tires from the California tire store to the border to deeper into Mexico to Tijuana, where tires are in such surplus they have become a fixture of architecture.
  • LA's Nuclear Secret / KNBC-TV Los Angeles

    A yearlong investigation by KNBC-TV revealed that dangerous radioactive materials were secretly released into the air above Los Angeles for years, and the government has covered it up. This I-Team investigation exposes the once-secret nuclear experiments at the Santa Susana Field Lab, tucked away in the hills between the San Fernando and Simi valleys. We found evidence that these radioactive releases, and the mishandling of toxic chemicals at the Field Lab, might be responsible for thousands of illnesses and deaths. https://vimeo.com/150828999 http://data.nbcstations.com/national/KNBC/la-nuclear-secret/
  • Undrinkable

    Imagine if you turned on the tap and the water that poured out was undrinkable. That's the reality facing an estimated 100,000 Texans — many of them impoverished Latinos living along the Mexican border. The Texas Tribune exposed this public health crisis in a five-part series in March — a crucial reporting project that revealed the malfeasance, red tape, environmental woes, political infighting and cultural barriers that stood in the way of getting clean, safe water to the neediest parts of the state.
  • Deep Inside the Wild World of China’s Fracking Boom

    Mother Jones' Jaeah Lee and Climate Desk's James West traveled to central China and uncovered alarming trends with global consequences. The duo reveals how as China, as it aims to wean itself from coal, has called on multinational oil and gas giants to help tap into its vast natural gas resources. As fracking technology crosses over from the fields of Pennsylvania to the mountains of Sichuan, so have questions about its risks and consequences. The practice, which has been linked to contaminated water, methane leaks, and earthquakes in the United States, may pose greater risks in China, given what one expert describes as a "pollute first, clean up later" mentality. Their yearlong investigation includes a five-part video series complete with data visualizations and charts, expert and insider perspectives, and rich, on-the-ground documentary footage.
  • Meltdown: Terror at the Top of the World

    This is a different type of investigative story. I followed the process I would have used for a traditional investigative piece—digging through complex reports, cultivating sources, deciphering data, reconciling opposing ideas. But instead of trying to uncover wrongdoing, my goal was to introduce a wide audience to a complex and divisive topic that is typically understood and discussed only by insiders: climate change.
  • Landslide Safety All Over The Map

    A catastrophic landslide in Oso, Washington -- a state dotted with landslide-prone slopes -- in March 2014 traveled more than 3,000 feet from its base, in the process burying a community and killing 43 people. A joint KUOW-Earthfix investigation found that most of Washington's counties routinely allow homes to be built 50 feet or less from known landslide zones, although landslides commonly travel hundreds of feet.
  • Logging and Landslides

    After a landslide killed 43 in the town of Oso, Washington, our KUOW investigation found that Washington state's department of natural resources had allowed clear-cutting on sensitive ground that, by law, should have been protected from logging to avoid triggering a slide above Oso. We also documented the agency head's broken vow not to take campaign contributions from the timber industry he regulates.
  • Hydrogen Energy: Pollution or Solution

    This is the result of a two-month investigation into a proposed, federally-funded "green-energy" power plant in the middle of California's Central Valley. This plant planned to gasify coal and use new technology to diminish the amount of CO2 released into the air. This would be done by using carbon sequestration in nearby oil fields, creating jobs and energy for the valley. However this report shows that while this power plant reduces CO2 emissions and creates dozens of temporary jobs, the additional environmental impacts are substantial. The plant plans to truck in coal dust past schools and neighborhoods, use millions of gallons of water a day in drought-stricken farming country, pollute the air with particulate pollution in the most polluted air region in the country, store hazardous chemicals near schools and homes, fill landfills at an alarming rate, AND at the end of it all the plant will produce at times NO electricity.