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 "coal" ...

  • NPR/PBS Frontline/Ohio Valley ReSource: Coal's Deadly Dust

    Coal's Deadly Dust asked a fundamental question about an unprecedented epidemic of the advanced stage of black lung disease (Progressive Massive Fibrosis or PMF), among coal miners. How and why did this happen? How could it happen given a regulatory system designed to protect miners from the toxic dust that causes disease? The investigation documented the failure of federal regulators and the mining industry to protect coal miners from the epidemic of disease, despite clear evidence in federal data, clear evidence in mining practices, decades of recommendations to take action, and awareness of the danger.
  • NPR/Frontline: Coal's Deadly Dust

    This NPR/Frontline investigation of an epidemic of a fatal lung disease affecting more than 2,000 coal miners used 30 years of government data and internal agency memos to show that federal agency officials knew more than 20 years ago that coal miners were exposed to toxic silica dust, and were suffering severe lung disease, but did not act then or since to directly address silica exposure in coal mines.
  • The New Power Brokers: West Virginia’s Natural Gas Industry

    As the natural gas industry in West Virginia has boomed, it has taken the state down the same path as the coal industry, fueled by weakened protections for the environment and local residents, lax ethical rules, out-of-state gas producers who cheat local gas owners out of their profits, and a century-old property law doctrine that lets gas drillers do whatever they want to get the gas, whether they own the land or not.
  • Freelance: Abandoning American coal mines

    Since reaching a historical high in 2008, U.S. coal production plummeted by a third in the ensuing decade. Companies accounting for nearly half the coal dug across the country declared for bankruptcy in 2015 and 2016, and President Donald Trump’s rhetorical ending of the “war on coal” has shown no meaningful signs of reviving the industry. With the writing on the wall for U.S. coal, I investigated the system meant to guarantee that funds are available to pay for environmental cleanup. I built first-of-their-kind databases to determine how much money was in this system, where it was held and other trends in the industry such as levels of oversight and types of post-mining land uses. A combination of data analysis and ground-level reporting from around the country resulted in stories that showed myriad issues in protecting cleanup funds, which result in scarred land and polluted air and water.
  • Coal's Deadly Dust

    This NPR/Frontline investigation of an epidemic of a fatal lung disease affecting more than 2,000 coal miners used 30 years of government data and internal agency memos to show that federal agency officials knew more than 20 years ago that coal miners were exposed to toxic silica dust, and were suffering severe lung disease, but did not act then or since to directly address silica exposure in coal mines.
  • Coal Uncovered

    "Coal Uncovered" is a two-part local news investigation into the coal handling industry on the Mobile River, and its effects on the citizens living in downtown Mobile, Ala. Folks living in the area worry their health is at risk due to the consistent build-up of what appears to be coal dust on their homes. FOX10 News hired an independent laboratory to test dust samples taken from five locations across downtown, to see if coal dust was indeed the culprit. The test results revealed every sample contained significant percentages of coal dust, validating the concerns of the residential community. Further, this investigation exposes a caught-on-camera phone call made by a tax-dollar paid coal industry leader, allowing FOX10 News to inform the public about what really goes on behind industry lines. This investigation exposes the effects of a powerful industry in Mobile, of which residents and school children are withstanding every day. It holds tax-dollar funded agencies accountable, and gives a voice to the people of downtown Mobile, whose complaints and concerns have long been ignored.
  • Advanced Black Lung Cases Surge in Appalachia

    An NPR investigation identified ten times the number of cases of the worst stage of the deadly coal miners' disease black lung as federal researchers reported. NPR's findings indicate Progressive Massive Fibrosis (PMF), as its called, strikes many more miners and at far higher rates than previously recognized. The report comes as the federal program that provides medical benefits and cash payments to miners stricken with black lung is threatened by a multi-billion dollar debt and challenges to ongoing funding.
  • Evicted and Abandoned: The World Bank’s Broken Promise to the Poor

    Evicted and Abandoned is a global investigation that reveals how the World Bank Group, the powerful development lender committed to ending poverty, has regularly failed to follow its own rules for protecting vulnerable populations. The Center for Public Integrity’s International Consortium of Investigative Journalists teamed with the Huffington Post, the GroundTruth Project, the Investigative Fund, the Guardian and more than 20 other news organizations to develop this series of stories. In all, more than 80 journalists from 21 countries worked together to document the bank’s lapses and show their consequences for people around the globe. The reporting team traveled to affected communities in more than a dozen countries – including indigenous hamlets in the Peruvian Andes, fishing settlements along India’s northwest coast and a war-scarred village in Kosovo’s coal-mining belt. http://projects.huffingtonpost.com/projects/worldbank-evicted-abandoned
  • Coal Concerns

    Dozens of families living near a power plant say a giant pile of coal outside the plant is making them sick. In a year-long investigation the I-Team's Jermont Terry looks into the families' claims and takes their calls for better regulation to both the power company and state regulators. https://youtu.be/wVwesrOMT4M
  • Problems and opportunities: Electronic access in Indiana

    "Problems and opportunities: Electronic access in Indiana" explored how Indiana's county-level government agencies complied with the Access to Public Records Act — the state's open records law. Reported and written by master's students at The Media School at Indiana University and published by the Indiana Coalition for Open Government, the project found nearly half of the 90 agencies sampled failed to respond to requests for public records. http://indianacog.org/icog-news/problems-and-opportunities-electronic-access-in-indiana/