Crypto ignites conflict

In upstate New York, cryptocurrency mining causes rifts between local businesses and an enterprising corporation.

California regulators drafting emergency rule to combat deadly lung disease

Workplace regulators in California are drafting an emergency rule to address an epidemic of silicosis — a deadly, preventable lung disease — among fabricators of artificial-stone countertops. In December, Public Health Watch, LAist and Univision revealed what’s believed to be the nation’s biggest cluster of the disease, in the Los Angeles area. The news outlets’ …

Latest chemical plant fire unnerves, infuriates Houston-area residents

A recent investigation by Public Health Watch and The Texas Tribune revealed government negligence before and during a devastating 2019 fire at a tank farm in the Houston suburb of Deer Park. Earlier this month, a public hearing was held for that facility. The next day, another big fire broke out at a plant down the road.

IRW interns contribute to Pulitzer finalists

Reporting, research aids story development The Washington Post was awarded three Pulitzers this week, for national reporting on abortion; for feature writing about post-pandemic America; and for a biography of George Floyd in the category of best general nonfiction. The Post also was honored to have five entries announced as Pulitzer finalists. Former students Vanessa Montalbano, McKenzie Beard, Megan Ruggles and Carley Welch researched hundreds of court cases as part of their …

New stories, podcast range from health to AI

Latest stories Two-part deep-dive into a toxic cloud in Texas A 10-month investigation by Public Health Watch and The Texas Tribune found that many state and federal scientists documented problems at an ITC chemical-storage facility long before catastrophe struck in 2019. The story, published April 26, details how this accident unfolded in Deer Park, a tight-knit city of 30,000. It is based …

‘Haunting’ turmoil remains

The Texas Tribune analyzed previously unreported air monitoring data and records from the 2019 ITC chemical disaster near Houston and found that high benzene levels lingered in the air for two weeks after public health measures were lifted. Experts say more shelter-in-place advisories should have been issued.

‘It was just a matter of time’

Regulators repeatedly documented — but did little to address — problems at a Houston-area tank farm. Then disaster struck. On March 17, 2019, a fire blew through a corner of the facility, releasing toxic chemicals into nearby communities for weeks.