Chemical Leak

Chemical Leak
3:40 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

LISTEN: New Site Explores Water Woes in W.Va.


An online interactive documentary launches today. outlines history that lead up to the Charleston water crisis of 2014 which left 300,000 for over a week without water. The site also explores other water challenges the state has and continues to face.

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Water Crisis
6:00 am
Fri January 9, 2015

One Year After the Chemical Leak, Mother and Daughter Still Don't Drink Tap Water

Lida Shepherd and her daughter, Lucia.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

It was some ten days before all of the families affected by the tap water ban following Charleston’s chemical spill were able to return to life as usual within their homes. And many did just that, once again drinking, cooking and bathing with water straight from the tap. The same, however, can’t be said for every family in the valley including Lida Shepherd, who says she still won’t drink the water.

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri January 9, 2015

Documentary Inspired by Water Crisis to Premiere at Culture Center

Near Frametown, several miles below the Sutton Dam. Drone shot.
Mike Youngren Presidio Studios in Lewisburg

Mike Youngren has lived in Charleston for the last 20 years. A West Virginia Public Broadcasting alum, Youngren pursued filmmaking after retiring. When the January 9th chemical leak happened, Youngren decided the problem was widespread enough for people to stop to pay attention to what he had to say. With this in mind, he decided to develop his documentary, Elk River Blues.

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Chemical Leak
12:14 am
Fri January 9, 2015

Action Groups, Experts, Mom Look Back and Forward After Chemical Spill

Credit wikimedia / Wikimedia

Leaders of citizen groups, a water scientist and an impacted mother held a phone-based news conference this week to look back on the crisis and outline the progress, pitfalls and next steps in their work to ensure safe drinking water for all West Virginians.

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Law & Order
6:17 am
Tue January 6, 2015

Conflict of Interest Arguments Heard in Freedom Case

Credit WOWK

A judge has heard arguments over recusing prosecutors from a case charging former executives in a chemical spill.

In Charleston federal court Monday, ex-Freedom Industries executives Gary Southern and Dennis Farrell claimed U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin's office and family members were victims of the company's spill and have conflicts of interest. Last January's spill left 300,000 residents without tap water for days.

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Chemical Leak
9:33 am
Mon December 29, 2014

Dozens of W.Va. Lawsuits Filed Against DuPont

Credit Parkersburg News & Sentinel

Dozens of West Virginia residents have filed lawsuits against chemical company DuPont for contaminating drinking water.

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Chemical Leak
2:59 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

Prosecuters Say Ex-Freedom Industries President A Flight Risk

Gary Southern
Credit WOWK

Federal prosecutors want a former executive charged in a January chemical spill on home confinement with electronic monitoring.

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Public Health
3:48 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

"100 Years of Poor Health" Kicks Off W.Va. Public Health Dialogue

Credit Department of Labor

West Virginia University's School of Public Health is kicking off a series of monthly Public Health Dialogues this week. The first in the series is titled "Black Lung and Chemical Spills: 100 years of Poor Health in West Virginia."

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Chemical Leak
1:41 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

Investigations into January Chemical Spill Continue

Now disassembled Freedom Industries tank farm that leaked into the Elk River on January 9, 2014.
Credit AP

The West Virginia Public Service Commission (PSC) is holding a discovery conference on Monday, August 18th in its ongoing investigation of West Virginia American Water's response to the January 9th chemical spill.

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Chemical Leak
5:11 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

DEP Tank Registration Program Opens

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection recently opened its online tank registration program. Tanks meeting specific guidelines must be registered by October 1.
Credit AP

Recently, an overflow of water from a trench at the Freedom Industries tank site in Kanawha County reached the Elk River. West Virginia’s Department of Environmental Protection issued two notices of violation to Freedom for the incident. But while that tank site is being monitored regularly, the DEP is also beginning to focus attention on a whole bunch of other aboveground storage tanks too, that aren't receiving as much attention. Ben Adducchio has more.

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Water Spill
3:39 pm
Fri April 25, 2014

WV DEP Seeking Public Comments on Storage Tank Regulation Rules

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection is seeking public input as it prepares to write new regulations on storage tanks.
Credit wikimedia / Wikimedia

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection wants public input on what should be included in the rules to regulate aboveground storage tanks, according to an agency release.
The release says as a requirement of the newly passed Senate Bill 373, also known as “The Water Resources Protection Act,” and to others simply as “The Tank Bill,” the agency must draft rules for a new Aboveground Storage Tank Regulatory Program in time for lawmakers to consider them during the 2015 legislative session.

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Elk River Spill
3:41 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

WVU Panel Looks Into Charleston Water Spill

The WVU School of Journalism is going to be hosting a panel discussion on the chemical spill into the Elk River.
Credit Downstream Strategies

Monday evening, a special panel will be discussing the recent water spill into the Elk River.

This panel will be made up of journalists who covered the event, which affected the water supply of about 300,000 state residents.

This panel at West Virginia University is designed to analyze local and national coverage of this event. It will also discuss how crisis news coverage has changed, in today’s digital news media environment.

Maryanne Reed is the dean of West Virginia University’s P.I. Reed School of Journalism.

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Chemical Leak
1:40 am
Thu March 6, 2014

Five Things That Happened Before W.Va. House Passed the Water Resources Protection & Management Act

Credit Daniel Walker

There is little doubt that the bill aimed to protect water resources in the state, in response to the Jan. 9 spill of MCHM into the Elk River by Freedom Industries, has been the most closely watched and widely discussed bill of the session.

Although the Senate passed SB 373 less that two weeks after its introduction, its passage  in the House took far longer--a result of a triple committee reference that offered a chance for roughly 60 delegates to offer amendments to the bill. Delegates also labored over 20 amendments on the bill's Third Reading Wednesday night before deciding to send the bill back to the Senate.

Here's a few highlights from Wednesday night's floor session leading up to SB 373's passage:

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House of Delegates
6:09 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Downstream Strategies Issues New Water Protection Report to Judiciary Committee

Downstream Strategies President Evan Hansen presents a new report to the House Judiciary Committee.
Credit Aaron Payne

Senate Bill 373 relating to water resources protection was sent to the House nearly one month ago to go through three committee stops. Two weeks ago the bill made it through the Health and Human Resource Committee with amendments to be sent to the Judiciary Committee. Wednesday, the second committee used its meeting to hear from Downstream Strategies President Evan Hansen.

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Water Concerns
5:00 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Kanawha Co. Schools Pulling Brand of Bottled Water from Circulation

Credit Kanawha County Schools

Test results show bottled water provided to Kanawha County Schools do not contain coliform after a health official discontinued its use Wednesday.

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department ran tests for coliform, an indicator of bacteria, after complaints that the water had a musty smell and an issue with taste.

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