Category: Industry

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A “No Pipeline” sticker adorns a sign near where the Atlantic Coast Pipeline would have crossed a mountain near Wintergreen Resort, just below Reids Gap in Nelson County, Virginia.

New Dominion

How a grassroots groundswell, legal challenges and political and technological sea changes combined to force Virginia’s most powerful company to abandon the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, pivot from natural gas and onto a cleaner energy path. “Hung up in the mountains” Tom Hadwin took a sip

“A view of the cleared right-of-way for the Constitution Pipeline on the property of the Holleran family of New Milford, PA. Tree-fellers authorized by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission used chain-saws to destroy 90 percent of the family’s maple trees that produced syrup for their business, North Harford Maple.”

The Limits of Disturbance

With its permitting authority over natural gas infrastructure, the little-known Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has sweeping power over individual citizens’ property and our collective climate trajectory. Critics say that reforming its pipeline review process should be high on President Joe Biden’s agenda.

This is the view of Richmond, California from San Francisco side of the bay after accident at Chevron. Photo credit: Chemical Safety Board.

Living on the Fence Line: A History of Chemical Threats to Black Communities

West Virginia State University, a 125-year-old historically black university, rested for decades on the fence line of a pesticide manufacturer, a stone’s throw from tanks holding lethal amounts of one of the world’s most dangerous and infamous chemicals, methyl isocyanate. The chemical, known as MIC,

The Hayes Lemmerz aluminum wheel manufacturing plant fire and explosion was one of three combustible dust industrial accidents that killed 14 workers in a single year. Photo credit: Chemical Safety Board.

Death by Dust

Tammy Miser got the call late at night from a family friend. Her brother Shawn may have been injured in a work accident and it might be serious. Shawn Boone was a maintenance man at the Hayes Lemmerz plant in Huntington, Ind., a manufacturer of

Snow-mantled mountains crown the northern tip of Prins Karls Forlandet in April in the Svalbard archipelago, Norway.

Methane: Arctic Promise and Peril

Consigned to my bunk all night by gut-wrenching seas, I wistfully thought back to terra firma on mainland Norway a few days earlier. Before boarding the University of Tromsø’s research ship, R/V Helmer Hanssen,

The aftermath of the Lac-Megantic crude railcar explosion in 2013. (Credit: Axel Drainvile via Flickr)

BOOM: North America’s Explosive Oil-by-Rail Problem

U.S. regulators knew they had to act fast. A train hauling 2 million gallons of crude oil from North Dakota had exploded in the Canadian town of Lac-Megantic, killing 47 people. Now they had to assure Americans a similar disaster wouldn’t happen south of the border, where the U.S. oil boom is sending

Dwayne Pendergraph, a former plant worker, at his home in McMinnville, October 20, 2013. Photo By David M. Barreda

Losing Sparta

Last August, more than a year after the Philips lighting fixture plant in Sparta, Tennessee, closed its doors, Bo McCurry and Ricky Lack stepped out of Lack’s beat-up Ford Ranger and walked up the sloping, tree-lined drive to the plant’s padlocked gates. It was the first time either one had been back since the closure.

When you eat a bowl of clam chowder in the U.S., you’re probably padding profits for British investors.

Corporate Fishing

What’s it take to buy a share of the ocean in America? For Lion Capital, the British private equity firm, the price is somewhere south of $980 million. That’s the sum the London-based firm paid three years ago when it bought Bumble Bee Foods, the

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Pharming Bad Bacteria

In December 2003, a farm couple in the Netherlands scheduled their six-month-old daughter for surgery to correct a congenital heart defect. But before Eveline van den Heuvel could be admitted to the hospital, a test showed that she was carrying a strain of Staphylococcus aureus

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The Man Who Turned Antibiotics Into Animal Feed

The food industry and the medical community have fought bitterly, and for decades, over the widespread practice of adding antibiotics to livestock feed to make animals grow faster. Banning the practice would be an agricultural disaster, food companies predict—or at least the end of affordable

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Canadian Wetlands Produce Fuel for U.S.

Like a great silver snake, the Athabasca River glides though a spongy-wet wilderness of spindly forests, lakes and marshes 650 miles north of the U.S.-Canada border. Breathe deeply, though, and you catch a whiff of fresh, hot tar. In the river, fish are speckled with

Investigative Report: Promises and Poverty

Starbucks calls its coffee worker-friendly,but in Ethiopia, a day’s pay is a dollar Text and photos by (APF Fellow) Tom Knudson – Bee Staff Writer APF fellow Tom Knudson’s article on Starbucks was published jointly by the Sacramento Bee and the Alicia Patterson Foundation.To access

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How the Bush administration reversed decades of progress on mine safety

On the afternoon of September 23, 2001, thirty-two miners were repairing drilling machines and hoisting tunnel supports into place in the No. 5 mine of Jim Walter Resources Inc., in Brookwood, Alabama. The No. 5 is North America’s deepest coal mine, tracking the six-foot-high Blue

Revisiting The Appalachian Coalfield

What began in 1968 as a ten-day trip became fourteen years of visiting and photographing in coal mines,miners’ homes, and communities in the hills and “hollers” of West Virginia, eastern Kentucky, southwestern Virginia, and western Pennsylvania. I was attracted by a rich cultural heritage that

Aquaculture Moves Offshore

The white spires of the Algonquin Hotel towered above the coastal town of St. Andrews, New Brunswick, the center of aquaculture development in Canada’s maritime provinces. Government officials and aquaculture industry representatives from Canada, Norway, and the U.S. met at the Algonquin to discuss fish

The Work of a Pullman Porter

A Pullman porter was, before anything, a man who made beds. Or, as they said, made down beds, since the most taxing part was popping the upper berth from the ceiling. The lower was formed by folding down opposing seats, fastening curtains, affixing the headboard,

The Mystery of Cancer in Alaska

Jennifer Probert poses in her home Tuesday evening, August 19, 2003. Probert has been compiling informal cancer statistics from Tok. (for Diana’s cancer series) Eric Engman/News-Miner Jennifer Probert has been wondering for several years now why she knows so many people with cancer. The 28-year-old