Freight cars sitting on tracks

Life in the Toxic Zones

The Investigative Reporting Workshop, in partnership with E&E News and NBC News, set out in 2020 to examine the health of people living in the shadows of U.S. oil refineries. Nearly 6 million people live within 1 mile of a refinery and, in most cases, those populations have higher rates of lung, heart and kidney …

Abandoned home near oil refinery

About the Toxic Zones series

The Investigative Reporting Workshop, in partnership with E&E News and NBC News, set out in 2020 to examine the health of people living in the shadows of U.S. oil refineries. Nearly 6 million people live within 1 mile of a refinery and, in most cases, those populations have higher rates of lung, heart and kidney …

Pollution, poverty and pandemic collide

In a segregated community outside of an Alabama oil refinery, chronic illness tells a story of racial inequality, poverty and disease as U.S. deaths from COVID-19 surpass 300,000.

Man lying down and undergoing spinal decompression

Patients pay thousands for a back pain treatment promoted by exaggerated claims

This story was produced by FairWarning, a nonprofit news organization based in Southern California that focuses on public health, consumer, labor and environmental issues. You can sign up for their newsletter here. Desperate to relieve their suffering, people with chronic back pain who comb the internet looking for help sometimes stumble upon a device called …

Farmer working with marijuana plants

In the cannabis patch, a patchwork of safety standards

This story was produced by FairWarning (www.fairwarning.org), a nonprofit news organization based in Southern California that focuses on public health, consumer, labor and environmental issues. You can sign up for their newsletter here. Although 35 states, three U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis for recreational or medical use, there still are …