IE Investigations

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IE Questions

Energy is a broad and confusing topic. In this weekly series, Inside Energy reporters de-mystify the wonkiness that dominates so much of the energy conversation, through answering both our questions from the field and questions sent to us by you!

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Neil LaRubbio on the job site.

Inside the Boom

Emily Guerin came to North Dakota for the same reason as everyone else - to find work related to the huge oil boom transforming the state. This is an occasional series on her experiences living the boom.

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Holly Copeland in front of the family's house and their newly-installed solar array.

The Solar Challenge

Inside Energy reporters Dan Boyce and Jordan Wirfs-Brock examine how solar energy - particularly rooftop solar panels - is changing the way electricity is delivered in the U.S. in this multi-part series: In A Blackout, Your Solar Panels May Be Useless; Utilities Push Back On Rooftop Solar; An Edison V. Westinghouse Rematch.

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In January, protesters of the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline were arrested in Conestoga, Pennsylvania. Communities are turning to new tactics to keep oil and gas pipelines off their lands. Courtesy Michelle Johnsen/StateImpact Pennsylvania

The Pipeline Network

Inside Energy contributor Stephanie Joyce looks at how our nation's pipeline infrastructure is expanding in response to the domestic oil and gas boom.

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Baker Hughes painted a thousand drill bits pink to support breast cancer awareness.

Public Health and Fracking

As communities find themselves in the midst of unprecedented energy development, for people who live near oil and gas wells, are there health risks? Inside Energy met with scientists to learn how oil and gas drilling affects your health and to clarify the confusion: If You Only Read One Story On Public Health And Fracking, Read This One.

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Dark Side of the Boom

Inside Energy delves into workplace fatality numbers for the oil and gas industry and finds some startling trends, especially for North Dakota, in this four-part series: How Dangerous Is Too Dangerous?; What Makes North Dakota Oil And Gas So Dangerous?; Why Is Wyoming Safer?; The Formula For Alaska's Safety Success.

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Wyoming's State Capitol

Boom 2.0

Wyoming is posed on the edge of a new (fracking) oil boom. Wyoming Public Radio reporters investigate what makes a boom and its known consequences, what can be done to steer a single-sector economy towards becoming a diverse economy, and what constitutes a bust.

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If a generator were installed at the outlet of Button Rock Dam, it could power 500 homes.

Energy and the New Congress

There's no doubt that the 2015 GOP ascendency in the Senate will affect the country's energy policy. Inside Energy takes a comprehensive look at what the 114th Congress could mean for Keystone XL, EPA regulations, energy efficiency standards and renewable energy generation.

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Laramie River Station, a coal-fired power plant near Wheatland, WY.

Future of Coal

The coal industry in this country is under threat. Since 2012 nearly 60 coal-burning power plants have partially or completely shut down. But the dirty fuel still supplies 40% of our power and is critical, proponents say, to maintaining the reliability of our electricity infrastructure. We want to know: What is the future of coal in the United States?

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More Recent Investigations

Slaying The Debt Monster: Finances Of 10 Oil And Gas Companies In Colorado

Understanding how debt plays into the web of a company's finances was a beast - nay, a monster. We faced the Debt Monster with only 10-Ks to protect us.

We wanted to find out if the increasing debt load of many oil companies is making them more vulnerable to sliding oil prices. Understanding how debt plays into the web of a company's finances was a beast - nay, a monster - we faced with only financial documents to protect us. Continue Reading →

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How A Service Station In A Wyoming Boomtown Learned To Live With(out) The Energy Industry

Verne and Emma Waldner are the longtime owners of Wamsutter’s Conoco Service Station.

Verne Waldner bought the Conoco Service Station in Wamsutter Wyoming back in 1973. There wasn’t much to the town then, and there still isn’t. Wamsutter sits off Interstate 80 and has a current population of just under 500. But Verne says that isolation has made his station an essential outpost for drivers passing through for decades. Continue Reading →

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As Traffic Accidents Spike In Boom Areas, Towns Struggle To React

Highway 59 traffic going through Bill, WY.

Update: On Tuesday February 17th, the Wyoming House of Representatives and Senate both defeated amendments to put more money into safety upgrades on Highway 59. Governor Matt Mead had asked for $21 million to add more passing lanes on the highway, but the Joint Appropriations Committee agreed to just $17 million to fund repairs on both Highway 59 and U-S 20/26.  Lawmakers said revenues associated with falling oil prices have made the state reticent to spend money. If you ever take Wyoming Highway 59 between Douglas and Gillette, you might have noticed that recently there are more state troopers giving out more citations. In addition to this increased police presence, Governor Matt Mead has proposed nearly 22 million dollars in safety upgrades. Continue Reading →

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The Bust: A Difficult Cycle To Break

Oil prices have been in freefall in recent months, dropping by more than half since June. For energy states, that’s bad news. The American West has a long tradition of booms and busts, and in some states, like North Dakota and Wyoming, they continue to be a defining feature of the economy. But do they have to be? Continue Reading →

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Who Owns Oil And Gas?

Here are the companies in a sample T. Rowe Price retirement account that represent more than 0.05% of the account's investments. The size each word is proportional to how much of the account's money is invested in that company. Oil and gas companies (not including utilities) are highlighted in orange.

Oil prices are slipping to levels not seen in years. It’s bad for oil companies, but it has to be good for consumers, right?
Well, yes, though, it’s more complicated than that. That’s because almost all of us with retirement accounts are invested in oil and gas companies. Continue Reading →

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