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 "environmentalists" ...

  • American Catch

    In American Catch, award-winning author Paul Greenberg takes the same skills that won him acclaim in Four Fish to uncover the tragic unraveling of the nation’s seafood supply—telling the surprising story of why Americans stopped eating from their own waters. In 2005, the United States imported five billion pounds of seafood, nearly double what we imported twenty years earlier. Bizarrely, during that same period, our seafood exports quadrupled. American Catch examines New York oysters, Gulf shrimp, and Alaskan salmon to reveal how it came to be that 91 percent of the seafood Americans eat is foreign. Despite the challenges, hope abounds. In New York, Greenberg connects an oyster restoration project with a vision for how the bivalves might save the city from rising tides. In the Gulf, shrimpers band together to offer local catch direct to consumers. And in Bristol Bay, fishermen, environmentalists, and local Alaskans gather to roadblock Pebble Mine. With American Catch, Paul Greenberg proposes a way to break the current destructive patterns of consumption and return American catch back to American eaters.
  • Boeing’s Lobbying Campaign

    “Boeing’s Lobbying Campaign" uses public records to trace how The Boeing Co.’s lobbying killed a long-overdue correction to an obscure but important formula used to determine how much water pollution is allowed under the Clean Water Act. The lobbying by a Boeing senior executive, InvestigateWest showed, reached all the way to Gov. Christine Gregoire. After the Washington Department of Ecology had withstood challenges to its plans to tighten the water-pollution rules from the powerful timber and business industries during the 2012 legislative session, Boeing had the juice to quietly short-circuit those plans a few months later. The company went around Ecology to the governor, as InvestigateWest’s timeline of documents and emails made clear. Our reporting was carried in newspapers around the state, sparking reporting and editorials by other news organizations on the previously low-profile issue. Environmentalists also cited the series in a lawsuit against the EPA. Because we elevated this issue into public consciousness, reporters were all over the story when Boeing again tried to delay the changes in the 2013 legislative session, nearly causing a government shutdown. A new draft rule tightening the standards is due out in March 2014.
  • There Will Be Diatomaceous!

    In this series of coverage, Mission and State looks at Santa Barbara’s love-hate relationship with oil. As the country dives deeper and deeper into the enhanced-extraction oil boom, Santa Barbara grapples with what to do with the vast oil reserves waiting to be tapped in the North County and offshore. These stories delve into the fractured local oil politics, the strange bedfellows oil development can make of environmentalists, oil companies and politicians, the environmental and developmental legacies informing current debates, the missed opportunities for environmental concessions and the campaign contributions putting politicians in compromising positions. These stories paint the picture of a county in an almost schizophrenic political and cultural dance with itself. During the course of researching and reporting this series, it was revealed that Air Pollution Control District advisory board member and Lompoc City Councilmember Ashley Costa also worked in public relations for Santa Maria Energy, an obvious conflict of interest. Reporter Karen Pelland discovered that the president of a company proposing to slant drill from Vandenberg Air Force Base to get to the vast Tranquillon Ridge offshore reserve made significant political contributions to now-Congressman John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek). Garamendi had previously scuttled a deal between environmentalists and PXP oil company for the same reserve that was hailed as a landmark proposal at the time.
  • Green, Not So Green

    The AP spent 11 months examining the hidden environmental costs of the nation’s green-energy boom: undisclosed eagle deaths at wind farms; untracked loss of conservation lands and native prairies created by the ethanol mandate; and the government’s unadvertised support of more oil drilling with money to clean up coal-fired power plants. All energy has costs, and in the case of fossil fuels those costs have been well documented. But when it comes to green energy, the administration, the industry, and environmentalists don’t want to talk about. The AP series shows how the Obama administration has at times looked the other way and in other cases made environmental concessions for so-called green energy to make headway in its fight against global warming.
  • Ethanol Project

    The "Ethanol Project” reviewed the ethanol industry in Brazil, the United States, Colombia and Peru. It revealed a new generation of business executives who lead an industry dependent on subsidies, lobbying and very favorable loans awarded by multilateral organizations. The story showed how the ethanol industry has begun to experience some tough adjustments, and how the environmentalists that once endorsed the industry are asking how sustainable the industry really is and what contribution, if any, it is making to the environment.
  • The Birth of a Movement: The New Face of Protest

    A collection of articles by The Village Voice examining if there is a new activist movement and if so, who are the activists and what do they hope to accomplish. The three-month project was done in the wake of mass demonstrations against the World Trade Organization in Seattle, against the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C., and against police brutality in New York City. "The staff found that the movement is composed of large numbers of citizens, with different agendas, but united in their rage over economic injustice."
  • Priming the Pump: How Cash, Caucuses Combined to Protect A Fuel on the Hill

    The Journal reports on controversy surrounding a 20-year-old tax subsidy for ethanol, a gasoline additive typically made from corn. The subsidy benefits producers and brings gasoline prices down, but has been scoured by environmentalists. The story reveals how political considerations and presidential ambitions have added flare to the debate on the subsidy.
  • Courts expanding effort to battle water pollution. New enforcement tactic. Environmental groups Suing by employing little-used provision in 1972 law.

    A wave of lawsuits brought by environmentalist compelled state and Federal authorities to enforce a long-dormant provision of the Clean Water Act, opening a new front in the struggle over pollution and requiring the Government to make new assessments of whether water standards are being met.
  • The Coal Truth

    The story reports on the close ties between Indiana public officials and coal companies. Nuwer examines the contributions that coal companies made to the presidential campaign of George W. Bush and the Republican national PAC. The report attempts to access the impact of coal industry on water pollution. Nuwer finds that there is not enough public debate on that issue because there are relatively few active environmentalists in Indiana.
  • Yucca Mountain Conflict of Interest

    A Las Vegas Sun investigation reveals that the law firm hired by the Energy Department to do legal work on the Yucca Mountain repository has been lobbying to get the project built. The Energy Department manages the proposed Yucca Mountain project, a federal proposal to bury tens of thousands of tons of nuclear waste at the site about 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas. The plan is controversial, environmentalists say its a bad idea, the nuclear energy industry says its needed. The Energy Department hired Chicago-based Winston & Straw to "independently review Yucca documents and impartially advise the DOE about possible flaws." But the Las Vegas Sun learned that Winston & Straw also does lobbying work for the Nuclear Energy Institute, the energy industry's top trade group and the "most vocal Yucca proponent in Washington." Nevada lawmakers contend that Winston & Straw involvement with the NEI and DOE presents a dangerous conflict of interest.