decommissioned pumpjacks

Breathing problems

This is another in an occasional series called “Toxic Zones” that explores life in the communities around America’s oil refineries. This story is a collaboration between E&E News and the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University. Read the first story in the series here. ARTESIA, N.M. — When the new pastor arrived at Our Lady …

Where does plastic go?

“Plastic Wars” looks at how the plastics industry has used recycling to help sell more plastic — and why the plastic waste problem has only grown. The one-hour program, which aired March 31, 2020, is a collaboration among the Washington PBS FRONTLINE team, NPR and the Investigative Reporting Workshop. The seven-month investigation took the investigative …

Plastic bottles empty

Companies’ new pledges to boost recycling face old pitfalls

“Plastic Wars,” which examines the crisis in plastic waste, airs on PBS nationwide on March 31, 2020, and online with additional stories online and on-air in the coming weeks. The program is co-produced by PBS FRONTLINE and NPR in collaboration with the Investigative Reporting Workshop.  Facing a growing public outcry over the plastic pollution crisis, …

recycling symbol

When does recycling your plastic make sense? The answer isn’t so simple

‘Plastic Wars’ preview: “Plastic Wars,” which examines the crisis in plastic waste, airs on PBS nationwide on March 31, 2020, and online with additional stories online and on-air in the coming weeks. The program is co-produced by PBS FRONTLINE and NPR in collaboration with the Investigative Reporting Workshop.  When you throw away a plastic container, …

recycling bins

‘Plastic Wars’ airs Tuesday

FRONTLINE and NPR, in a co-production with the Investigative Reporting Workshop, teamed up over the last seven months to examine the crisis in plastic waste in the environment. The result: “Plastic Wars,” a new one-hour program, airs Tuesday, March 31, at 10 p.m. on PBS stations nationwide (check local listings) and online. The program’s producers …

Trump at podium

Trumping truth as people die

We Americans have, unfortunately, become accustomed to the daily, multiple prevarications of the 45th president of the United States, Donald John Trump. Since his Jan. 20, 2017, inauguration, Trump has made 16,241 false or misleading claims, according to Washington Post fact checker Glenn Kessler. Without doubt, previous presidents have misled or lied to the American …

Warning sign + vaccines

From bogus vaccine kits to ‘Silver Solution,’ coronavirus cons begin

This story was produced by FairWarning, a nonprofit news organization based in Southern California that focuses on public health, consumer and environmental issues.  Vaccine kits. “Silver Solution” treatment. Even coronavirus-fighting toothpaste. The swindles have begun. As Americans struggle to cope with the spread of COVID-19, they will also need to brace themselves for “disaster fraud” …

IRW updates: Helping you to report on coronavirus

Accountability:  The Workshop’s Accountability Project Team is working to add data to help newsrooms with COVID-19 coverage. In collaboration with Big Local News, we have added hospital and nursing home data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The data includes hospital location, the number of beds by type, county-level population estimates by age (which can be linked …

Oil refinery on fire

Closed Philadelphia refinery continues to leak toxic fumes

The Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery continued to emit concentrations of benzene far above EPA’s limit for the carcinogenic gas even half a year after a June 2019 catastrophic fire shut down the 150-year-old oil processing facility, newly released data shows. The previously unreported benzene data, posted online by EPA last week, raises fresh questions about …