A recent investigation by Public Health Watch and The Texas Tribune revealed government negligence before and during a devastating 2019 fire at a tank farm in the Houston suburb of Deer Park. Earlier this month, a public hearing was held for that facility. The next day, another big fire broke out at a plant down the road.
The Texas Tribune analyzed previously unreported air monitoring data and records from the 2019 ITC chemical disaster near Houston and found that high benzene levels lingered in the air for two weeks after public health measures were lifted. Experts say more shelter-in-place advisories should have been issued.
Regulators repeatedly documented — but did little to address — problems at a Houston-area tank farm. Then disaster struck. On March 17, 2019, a fire blew through a corner of the facility, releasing toxic chemicals into nearby communities for weeks.
New data show Houston-area communities are being flooded with chemicals. Residents are taking matters into their own hands.
In some cases, these ‘emissions events’ aren’t illegal. In others, state regulators give polluters the benefit of the doubt.
State Rep. Morales Shaw said she will write policies to tackle issues revealed in IRW and PHW’s recent investigation.
A clean energy company that once operated at William Koch’s Oxbow plant in Port Arthur, Texas, claimed in a lawsuit that Oxbow manipulated sulfur dioxide emissions to avoid spending millions on pollution controls. Oxbow said it complies with the law.
The Oxbow plant in Port Arthur, Texas, continues to emit as much as lung-damaging sulfur dioxide as it did before the Clean Air Act was passed 51 years ago.
The Investigative Reporting Workshop, in partnership with E&E News and NBC News, examines the health of people living in the shadows of U.S. oil refineries.
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.