Senate Democrats raise questions about EPA nominee’s ethics disclosures

“During his tenure as Attorney General of Oklahoma, Mr. Pruitt has blurred the distinction between official and political actions, often at the behest of corporations he will regulate if confirmed to lead EPA. While the disclosures Mr. Pruitt made to OGE may be sufficient to ascertain his personal financial conflicts of interest, they do not document conflicts he may have as a result of political activities,” the letter read.

Planting in southern Champaign County, Illinois on Friday, May 6, 2016.

2016: A year in photos

Over the past year, the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting has covered agribusiness from the lens of migrant labor to ethanol spills to climate change to Big Ag mergers. Here is our coverage in pictures.

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Five stories that revealed the impact of big agribusiness

The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting relocated to Champaign, Illinois, in 2012 to turn its investigative lens to one focus — agribusiness and its related issues. Below are five ways we’ve done that. If you like what you read, then please donate today to support our nonprofit, non-partisan journalism.

Plan for 20,000-hog facility sparks revolt in western Illinois | Chicago Tribune

Efforts like this one have largely failed during the past two decades as pork producers constructed more than 900 new swine confinements across Illinois, often brushing aside farm families’ concerns about sickening odors, road damage, depletion of wells and fouling of creeks. But this network of farmsteads set amid rolling hills has become the newest battleground where small-town residents are trying to fend off a leading U.S. pork producer

A migrant farmworker leans against the front door of her apartment at the Pine Creek housing facility in Holland, Michigan, on June 16, 2016.

Your donation is tripled – support nonprofit journalism now

Now more than ever, we need hard-working journalists to produce fact-based journalism that supports our democracy by telling the truth and holding powerful institutions accountable. Your tax-deductible donation to the Midwest Center will be tripled and fund our reporters and center as they do the stories that matter.

With limited staff, OSHA targets ‘severe violators’

A FairWarning analysis of OSHA data found that six years into the agency’s severe violator program – arguably the broadest workplace safety initiative launched during the Obama administration – more than 500 businesses are on its list of bad actors. They include corporate giants such as DuPont and International Paper, each with tens of thousands of employees, as well as more than 300 construction firms, many with fewer than a dozen workers.