Bill aims to stop coal companies from denying benefits to miners with black lung

By Chris Hamby

Two coal-state senators plan to introduce legislation to reform the federal benefits program for black lung victims.

Ten major findings from our investigations so far this year

By Jared Bennett and Sarah Whitmire

Investigations from the first half of 2014

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internet access":

"… federal approval of its merger with NBC Universal, so it promised to offer Internet access at a rate affordable to low-income families. The program, called "Internet …"

How oil and gas firms gained influence and transformed North Dakota

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Industry has transformed the state, but at what cost?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Oregon":

"… icy is $500 to Ryan Taylor’s campaign from an Eileen Brady, of Portland, Oregon, who could not be reached for this article. Fuglie, the retired Democratic …"

Even low doses of arsenic trigger cancer in mice, study finds

By David Heath

Study by the National Institutes of Health found levels of arsenic similar to what some people consume caused cancer in mice.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… rs in history. Extrapolating from those studies, scientists with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have tentatively concluded that arsenic is a serious p …"

"… pears to be safe,” Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Toxicology Program, said in a statement …"

How politics derailed EPA science on arsenic, endangering public health

By David Heath

A ban on arsenic-containing pesticides was lifted after a lawmaker disrupted a scientific assessment by the EPA.

What to do if your drinking water contains arsenic

By David Heath

Millions of Americans unwittingly consume arsenic, a potent carcinogen also linked to IQ deficits in children, in their drinking water.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Arsenic":

"… f other Americans have no idea that they are regularly consuming Arsenic. Arsenic is an element found in the Earth’s crust, and it finds its way into food …"

"… as many as 3 million consume water that wouldn’t meet the EPA standard. Arsenic is especially common throughout the western United States. Some states hav …"

As drilling ravages Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale, residents 'living in a Petri dish’

By Jim Morris, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

In partnership with InsideClimate News and The Weather Channel, Center examines oil industry exploitation of Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale.

Excerpts from this story referencing "oil producer":

"… ;The Weather Channel have examined what Texas, the nation’s biggest oil producer, has done to protect people in the Eagle Ford from the industry’s pollut …"

Top environment investigations from 2013

By The Center for Public Integrity

In case you missed it, here are some of our favorite environment and workers' rights investigations from 2013.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… air, worry on the ground Residents living along the chemical corridor of Texas and Louisiana often encounter 'upset' emissions — triggering pollution, …"

California cities seek $1 billion settlement for lead paint-related health care costs

By Lilly Fowler

Lawsuit says lead paint manufacturers should pay to remove old, toxic pigment from affected homes in California.

Excerpts from this story referencing "industry lawyer":

"… m. Just the same the publicity hits us where it hurts.” Scott, the industry lawyer, called the references to slums and minorities, “callous and regrettable …"

Cancer-cluster study seeking to debunk 'Erin Brockovich' has glaring weaknesses

By David Heath

An often-cited study finds no cancer cluster in Hinkley, Calif. But it fails to focus on people who drank poisoned water.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment":

"… began in 1952. Many of those records are sealed as part of a lawsuit. The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment mentioned but dismissed Morgan’s work in its 2011 public health goal, wh …"

EPA adds safeguards to spotlight conflicts on scientific panels

By David Heath and Ronnie Greene

The Environmental Protection Agency announced new steps Friday to help reveal potential conflicts of interest in scientific review panels.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Erin Brockovich":

"… lent chromium, best known as the toxic chemical compound from the hit film Erin Brockovich, is found in the drinking water of more than 70 million Americans, accordi …"

Praise from MIT for Center and PBS collaboration on post-Erin Brockovich Hinkley, Calif.

Knight Science Journalism at MIT commends Center and PBS for reporting on toxic cleanup in California

Excerpts from this story referencing "Erin Brockovich":

"… on lawsuit. The suit was made famous in the Hollywood movie Erin Brockovich.  Regulators have been slow to act on the problem of chromium (VI) i …"

Tackling the powerful chemical industry

By Bill Buzenberg

Investigation pushes EPA to change policies

Excerpts from this story referencing "Erin Brockovich":

"… (VI), you may recall, is the same chemical compound featured in the movie Erin Brockovich. That Oscar-winning film did much to raise awareness of chromium pollution …"

How industry scientists stalled action on carcinogen

By David Heath

Tens of millions of Americans drink tap water tainted with chromium. But industry pushback has made it hard for the EPA to regulate.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment":

"… rengthen drinking-water standards for chromium. In 1999, scientists at the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment concluded that it was safe to assume that drinking chromium may …"

As EPA delays new coal ash rules, residents turn to the courts for relief

By Kristen Lombardi

Across the country, residents are challenging the health impact of coal ash ponds -- bringing lawsuits as EPA delays new rules.

Helium balloon maker shows lobbyists love

By Dave Levinthal

Gas shortage prompts helium balloon company to hire help as Valentine's Day nears.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chief of staff":

"… g to documents filed Wednesday with the U.S. Senate. Greg Means, a former chief of staff for ex-Rep. Dennis Eckart, D-Ohio, and Mike Henry, a former staffer on the …"

EPA unaware of industry ties on cancer review panel

By David Heath and Ronnie Greene

An EPA panel appointed to study hexavalent chromium included scientists who had consulted for industry in lawsuits.

In Sri Lanka, new steps target mysterious kidney disease

By Sasha Chavkin

In Sri Lanka, the president vows controls on chemicals potentially linked to chronic kidney disease, as hospitals take steps for patients.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chronic kidney disease":

"… id growing concern the chemicals are helping fuel a mysterious epidemic of chronic kidney disease devastating its north central region.In September, in Mystery in the Field …"

"… in the Fields, the Center for Public Integrity explored how a rare form of chronic kidney disease is killing agricultural workers in Sri Lanka, India and Central America. S …"

"… re “causative factors” for the ailment – which they have named CKDu, chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology. Despite prior warnings from the WHO to reduce farmers …"

In Sri Lanka, breakthroughs, setbacks and a spiritual touch

By Sasha Chavkin and Anna Barry-Jester

How a rare kidney disease is killing laborers and vexing researchers in three countries.

Excerpts from this story referencing "World Health Organization":

"… fficial research, a glimmer of scientific hope emerged. The government and World Health Organization announced in June that they identified a key cause of the disease in Sri L …"

"… in the U.S. and Europe.In 2008, Sri Lanka’s Health Ministry invited the World Health Organization to join a comprehensive study to unravel the disease’s roots.For more th …"

FACT CHECK: Bogus oil claims by Crossroads GPS

By FactCheck.Org

Nonprofit group Crossroads GPS gets Obama administration energy policy facts wrong

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… ing with Nebraska officials but expects to submit a new application to the White House this year. It expects to get approval in the first quarter of 2013, and pl …"

Colombia vows to clean up coltan mining

By Corbin Hiar

Narco-groups illegal mining operations threaten country's exports of the important electronics component

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colombia":

"… e Journalists expose about paramilitaries involvement in the coltan trade, Colombia is moving to curb illegal mining of the highly sought after mineral.Juan M …"

"… ng of the highly sought after mineral.Juan Manuel Santos, the president of Colombia, travelled to the lawless southeastern corner of the country last weekend …"

"… taries and rebels-turned-drug dealers in the Armed Revolutionary Forces of Colombia, the FARC. As ICIJ reported earlier this month, those armed groups have co …"

"… heir illicit role in the trade may also become an economic concern for the Colombian government, which claims to control 5 percent of the world’s coltan res …"

Venezuela emerges as new source of ‘conflict’ minerals

By Emilia Diaz-Struck and Joseph Poliszuk

Venezuelan black-market mineral likely making its way to everything from smart phones to smart bombs

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colombia":

"… in southwest Venezuela’s Amazon jungle, near the country’s border with Colombia.It’s worth the backaches and sweat, Ramón said, rolling a near-black ro …"

"… ized crime in an illicit market for valuable minerals in South America. In Colombia, for example, police recently confiscated 83 tons of coltan and other mine …"

"… loa drug cartel.Much of coltan territory in Venezuela hugs the border with Colombia — an area of inaccessible jungle and meandering rivers and streams — w …"

"… ationship between the anti-American Chávez and the pro-U.S. government of Colombia.This is why American national security experts have noted the proliferatio …"

Five things you need to know about coltan:

Five things you need to know about this black-market mineral

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colombia":

"… s and organized crime. It’s the same in the South American jungles where Colombia, Venezuela and Brazil meet and where officials say they’ve found vast co …"

About this story

A look at the reporting process behind ICIJ's coltan stories

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colombia":

"… or coltan in South America’s Amazon, in the border between Venezuela and Colombia, where they face cross-border smugglers and must deal with violent drug tr …"

"… Emilia Diaz-Struck and Joseph Polizsuk (Venezuela);  Ignacio Gómez (Colombia); Marcelo Soares (Brazil); Nari Kim (South Korea)Project manager: Ricardo …"

"… rtners: El Universal (Venezuela), (Venezuela), Noticias Uno (Colombia), El Espectador (Colombia)  …"

"… zuela), (Venezuela), Noticias Uno (Colombia), El Espectador (Colombia)  …"

FACT CHECK: Obama, GOP spin recent energy stats

By The Associated Press

GOP rendition of U.S. energy production isn't in line with the facts

Excerpts from this story referencing "energy":

"… uldn't know it from the Republicans, but these are boom times for American energy.And you wouldn't know it from President Barack Obama, but he has very litt …"

"… ongress, Republicans have been hammering Obama for locking up the nation's energy resources. GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney, for one, accuses Obam …"

"… r one, accuses Obama of pursuing policies "that keep us from using our own energy."But such complaints don't hold up. The U.S. produced more oil in 2010 tha …"

"… he U.S. produced more oil in 2010 than it has since 2003, and all forms of energy production have increased.Obama is not only hoping that simple, rock-solid …"

Keystone XL pipeline rejection a setback for Canadian tar sands development

By Corbin Hiar

Keystone XL pipeline rejection won't stop the development of Canada's carbon-rich fuel

EPA releases long-awaited power plant air toxics rule

By Corbin Hiar

The EPA releases details of a landmark rule to cut air emissions of mercury and other toxics from coal- and oil-fired power plants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Children’s National Medical Center":

"… ilies and, especially, children from air pollution,” Jackson said at the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington on Wednesday. “Before this rule, there were no national st …"

Mercury falling: Groundbreaking power plant emissions rule imminent

By Corbin Hiar

The EPA is poised to issue a new regulation restricting toxic power plant emissions

Brominated battle: Soda chemical has cloudy health history

By Brett Israel

Experts now urge a closer look at a chemical, banned in other countries, now popping up in U.S. sodas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "American Beverage Association":

"… sed in some citrus-based beverages," said Christopher Gindlesperger of the American Beverage Association, which represents PepsiCo, maker of Mountain Dew. "Importantly, consumers …"

In polluted Pennsylvania suburb, a Republican takes on state regulators

By Jim Morris

Despite years of citizen complaints, factory on EPA ‘watch list’ gets new license to foul the air