Everglades algae bloom

The water stories

The stories IRW published in 2020 on water problems in Florida and California  illuminate some of the many water issues prevalent in the country today. In California, we focused on the neighboring towns of Tooleville and Exeter, one with poor-quality water and the other with clean water. In Florida, we looked at the longstanding problem of …

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 …

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.

Protests in Miami, Florida

Swept up by police

Protesters arrested after the May 25 death of George Floyd were a diverse, young group of people who demonstrated close to home and were charged largely with nonviolent crimes, according to a Washington Post review of data on more than 2,600 people detained in 15 cities.

Protestors march with signs in near the White House

Police stockpile ‘less-lethal’ munitions

After two nights of chaotic protests near the White House, D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department found its supply of rubber ball grenades, high-impact sponge rounds, long-range tear-gas projectiles, and pepper spray nearly depleted. The shortage did not last long.

bank building with old sign

Fake loans and fire

After a fire left charred loan documents on a boardroom table, investigators unraveled a 10-year scheme to defraud the Enloe State Bank in prairie Delta County. “People were betrayed,” said Texas’s top banking official.

protestors with signs

Overlooked: women killed by police

Nearly 250 women have been fatally shot by police since 2015, when The Washington Post began tracking police shootings nationwide. While women represent a small subset of the 5,600 fatal shootings overall, they are also often overlooked. Many of them were in their homes when they were killed.

The costs of war

What explains the U.S. record of near-constant warfare? Author and anthropologist David Vine examines the “forever war” that began with the war on terror after Sept. 11, 2001.

accident after police chase

Deadly force behind the wheel

In a successful PIT, the pursuing officer uses the cruiser to push the fleeing vehicle’s rear end sideways, sending it into a spin and ending the pursuit. But the tactic can have deadly consequences.