Resource Center


The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 26,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364573-882-3364  or where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "boom" ...

  • Inside Energy: Dark Side Of The Boom: Workplace Fatalities In Oil And Gas

    It’s no great surprise that the oil and gas industry is dangerous—but just how dangerous? And how bad does it have to get before regulators and elected officials step in and do something? Those questions were the jumping-off point for this four-part radio series (and multi-part web series) about oil and gas worker deaths. Using original data analysis, we compared the oil and gas industry in different states and with other dangerous industries. We then examined ways to make a dangerous industry safer.

    Tags: oil; gas; industry; death; regulator; officials

    By Emily Guerin; Stephanie Joyce; Jordan Wirfs-Brock; Alisa Barba

    Rocky Mountain PBS


  • Boom in Oil and Traffic Deaths

    Nationwide, oilfield workers are far more likely to die on the road than other workers. Meanwhile, Texas has become the deadliest state in total traffic fatalities during the last five years. The rise in deaths are taking place during the state’s boom in hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking." This series explores why there are so many oilfield-related traffic deaths and the impact on loved ones left behind.

    Tags: oilfield; workers; job; road; deaths; traffic

    By Andrew Schneider; Lise Olsen

    Houston Public Media


  • Big Oil, Bad Air

    Texas lies at the epicenter of the nation’s hydraulic fracturing – fracking – boom. What began in the Barnett Shale of North Texas 15 years ago has spread to the Eagle Ford Shale of South Texas and across the United States, to include regions unaccustomed to dealing with the fossil fuel industry. Until early 2014, the national media had paid little attention to the frenzy of drilling in the Eagle Ford, one of the most active shale plays in the world. It seemed the right place for us to explore a little-discussed yet critical aspect of the boom: toxic air emissions associated with wells, compressor stations and processing plants.

    Tags: fracking; fossil; fuel; drilling; toxic

    By Lisa Song; David Hasemyer; Susan White; Zahra Hirji; Paul Horn; Lance Rosenfield; Sabrina Shankman; Marcus Stern; John Bolger; Hannah Robbins; Jim Morris; Jamie Smith Hopkins; Talia Buford; Rosalind Adams; Ben Wieder; Alan Suderman; Eleanor Bell

    InsideClimate News


  • America's Rap Sheet

    Tougher laws and aggressive enforcement have ensnared more than one third of the adult American population. That’s the eye-popping number of American adults with an arrest record, a previously unreported fact that spurred the Journal to spend a year digging into the arrest boom and its consequences. The Journal shed light on a dysfunctional corner of the criminal justice system, where ineradicable arrest records are littered with mistaken identities and charges that were later dropped, while federal records of shootings by police are riddled with large holes.

    Tags: arrest; records; mistaken; identities; adults

    By Gary Fields; John R. Emshwiller; Rob Barry; Coulter Jones

    Wall Street Journal (New York)


  • Hospice Inc.

    Hospice, a specialty health service for dying people, has transformed over the past decade from its nonprofit roots into a booming industry dominated by for-profit players. HuffPost’s investigation reveals how some hospices are endangering patients in the drive for revenue, keeping them on a service specially-designed for dying people, sometimes against doctors orders, and subjecting them to treatment they and their families don’t want.

    Tags: hospice; for-profit; patient; endangerment

    By Ben Hallman; Shane Shifflett

    Huffington Post


  • Hurting for Work

    The Texas Tribune’s four-part “Hurting for Work” investigation exposed gaping holes in the workers’ compensation system in Texas, where a booming economy is adding jobs at a nation-leading pace that has the state’s top elected officials touting a “Texas miracle.”

    Tags: investigation; economy; workers' rights; workers' safety; workers’ comp; occupational insurance

    By Emily Ramshaw

    Texas Tribune


  • Drilling for Billions

    This series of stories focuses on the potential economic boost and environmental impact of extracting oil from Monterey Shale in Central California. To explore the topic 17 News traveled to western North Dakota to examine the impacts of their shale revolution. Experts in the piece explain the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing or fracking is used in shale booms. We explore the practice as it is done in California speaking with engineers on the forefront of exploration. According to industry, KGET is the only station ever allowed to speak with Central California industry engineers about the widely talked about oil completion practice used everyday in our community. 17 News was also granted unprecedented access to AERA Energy's exploration department taking a look at information even those in the industry are not privy to.

    Tags: environment; oil; fracking

    By Katey Rusch; Grant Simpson; Katey Rusch; Grant Simpson; Steve Womack

    KGET-TV (Bakersfield, Calif.)


  • Haves and Have-Nots: Uganda's drug-trial business is booming - but is it fair?

    Drug trials in developing nations around the world are growing exponentially. They are cheap. Rules are more lax. Uganda is one of the leading places in the world where this trend is taking place. In one of the world’s AIDS epicenters, in Gulu, northern Uganda, children are given a choice: be part of a drug trial involving risky treatment and at least get regular medications. Or rely on public health programs that often mean regularly missing required dosages of life-saving pharmaceuticals. The result is emblematic of a system where the ethics of drug trials face a grim reality. “The problem is that inadequate medical care creates a strong impetus for parents to agree to have their kids in research,” said Elizabeth Woeckner, president of Citizens for Responsible Care and Research, an organization that works to protect people who are the subjects of scientific research. “What should be voluntary is not quite so.” In the last five years, drug trials in Uganda have nearly doubled. There have been more than 100 trials in the last five years there. Drug companies such as Bristol Myers Squibb, Pfizer and Novartis, as well as American agencies, including the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute, work in places like Uganda because of the low cost and the number of patients who will sign up quickly for tests. At the same time, public funding for global health is diminishing. Despite safeguards, since the late 1990s a number of well-publicized cases have highlighted tests that appeared to violate ethical standards and regulations. While signing up for a trial is voluntary, that doesn’t make the decision easier – especially for parents who must decide what is best for their children, and knowing that the alternative means. This in-depth investigation goes beyond the surface to show the tough choices that arise from even the best intentioned drug trials, the vast sums of money at stake, and the seismic shift that has happened in the past decade for how the world tests drugs on humans.

    Tags: Drug testing; FDA; drugs

    By Rebecca Sesny

    219 Magazine


  • In Harm's Way

    "In Harm's Way" uncovers a pattern of poor government regulation and dangerous safety problems in the booming interstate bus industry, which now carries as many passengers from city to city as domestic airlines--700 million passenger rides a year. In an investigation that took most of the year, the KNBC I-Team exposed how federal regulators routinely allow unsafe buses to remain on the roads, sometimes with fatal consequences. In 2013, California had a record number of major bus crashes--11 of them--with hundreds of injuries and over a dozen deaths.

    Tags: broadcast; dangerous safety problems; poor government regulation; bus industry; federal regulators; fatal, bus crashes, California

    By Joel Grover; Chris Henao; Ernesto Torres; Phil Drechsler; Keith Esparros; Kris Li; Bobbi Eng

    KNBC-TV (Los Angeles)


  • There Will Be Diatomaceous!

    In this series of coverage, Mission and State looks at Santa Barbara’s love-hate relationship with oil. As the country dives deeper and deeper into the enhanced-extraction oil boom, Santa Barbara grapples with what to do with the vast oil reserves waiting to be tapped in the North County and offshore. These stories delve into the fractured local oil politics, the strange bedfellows oil development can make of environmentalists, oil companies and politicians, the environmental and developmental legacies informing current debates, the missed opportunities for environmental concessions and the campaign contributions putting politicians in compromising positions. These stories paint the picture of a county in an almost schizophrenic political and cultural dance with itself. During the course of researching and reporting this series, it was revealed that Air Pollution Control District advisory board member and Lompoc City Councilmember Ashley Costa also worked in public relations for Santa Maria Energy, an obvious conflict of interest. Reporter Karen Pelland discovered that the president of a company proposing to slant drill from Vandenberg Air Force Base to get to the vast Tranquillon Ridge offshore reserve made significant political contributions to now-Congressman John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek). Garamendi had previously scuttled a deal between environmentalists and PXP oil company for the same reserve that was hailed as a landmark proposal at the time.

    Tags: oil; oil reserves; environmentalists

    By Natalie Cherot, Joe Donnelly, Karen Pelland

    Mission and State