The environment is under new management.

A Surge of Black Lung Disease in Appalachia

A multiyear investigation by NPR and Frontline found that this decades-old problem is one federal regulators could have—but didn’t—address.

Complicated black lung disease is caused by exposure to silica dust which is 20 times more toxic than coal dust. Silica dust particles are small and sharp and easily inhaled. When they're inhaled, they remain in the lungs forever. The lungs fight back by building up fibrotic tissue that continues to grow, essentially making the lung useless. One pulmonologist Berkes spoke to described it as suffocating while alive. (AP Photo/Jeff Gentner)

Complicated black lung disease is caused by exposure to silica dust which is 20 times more toxic than coal dust. Silica dust particles are small and sharp and easily inhaled. When they're inhaled, they remain in the lungs forever. The lungs fight back by building up fibrotic tissue that continues to grow, essentially making the lung useless. One pulmonologist Berkes spoke to described it as suffocating while alive. (AP Photo/Jeff Gentner)

 

What is Trump on Earth?

Trump on Earth is a podcast exploring the environment in the Trump era. It is produced by The Allegheny Front, an environmental reporting project based in Pittsburgh, and Point Park University’s Environmental Journalism program.