Ohio Valley ReSource

A regional journalism collaborative reporting on economic and social change in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia.

With support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, seven public media outlets across the three states have partnered to form the ReSource in order to strengthen news coverage of the area’s most important issues.

With the mining industry in sharp decline, some coalfield counties are hoping new prisons can generate jobs. Eastern Kentucky’s 5th Congressional District is already home to three federal penitentiaries and could soon see construction of a fourth in Letcher County. 

As Benny Becker reports, the proposal has sparked sharp debate over the economics and ethics of prisons.

Alexandra Kanik | Ohio Valley ReSource

As the opioid epidemic continues to plague the Ohio Valley with addiction and death, the search for safer methods of pain management has become increasingly urgent. 

Advocates for medical marijuana have recently made inroads in the area with growing scientific evidence that the substance currently considered of no medical value by the federal government might be a tool to wean those suffering from chronic pain off of more dangerous drugs.

 

Shafted: Dark Future Possible For Miners Who Kept Our Lights On

Jul 11, 2016
Rebecca Schimmel/Ohio Valley ReSource

Miners in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia who helped keep the country’s lights on are worried that their retirement benefits could go dark as a result of a wave of bankruptcies in the coal industry. They hope Congress will approve a bill called the Miner’s Protection Act to shore up the pensions and health benefits promised to union miners.

Benny Becker

Kentucky is working on a multimillion dollar plan to bring broadband internet to the eastern part of the state, home to some of the country’s most impoverished places. A federal report released this year found that from around a third to nearly half of rural residents in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia lack high-speed internet and the job opportunities that come with it. But a few areas are ahead of the curve. In Kentucky’s Jackson and Owsley Counties, broadband has already arrived and is already creating jobs.

Region's Farmers Have High Hopes for Hemp

Jun 27, 2016

Farmers throughout the Ohio Valley want to revive a crop that was once a staple in the region: hemp. After a ban that lasted more than half a century, the 2014 Farm Bill allowed states to grow hemp in research programs. Growers and processors in Kentucky are aggressively putting that research program to work in hopes of winning a share of the booming market for hemp products.   

Hot Mess: How Fracking's Radioactive Waste Wound Up Near Homes & Schools

Jun 20, 2016

The energy that lights up, turns on, cools and heats our lives leaves... a trail of waste. And the waste from the gas drilling known as “fracking” is often radioactive. Reporter Glynis Board and the nonprofit Center for Public Integrity found that spotty regulation of this “hot” waste creates ripe conditions for improper disposal. 

 

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