Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

Mapping ‘Poisoned Places’ in Texas

To begin exploring how air pollution may affect your community, use NPR’s interactive map of more than 1,000 Texas facilities that have emitted hazardous chemicals into the air. Color-coded dots and scores of one to five are based on an EPA method of assessing potential health risk in airborne toxins. Higher numbers are linked to higher potential risks to human health. Zoom in to your neighborhood by clicking on the map.


Data Source: Environmental Protection Agency; NPR/Center for Public Integrity

Learn more about the data here from NPR’s Poisoned Places: Toxic Air, Neglected Communities project.


  • Anne

    As a child living in Beaumont within a few city block lengths of the Spindletop oil fields, I am very familiar with the effects of dirty air. Our home was coated by a black, furry-ish coating of God only knows what. And it was immune to cleaning or painting-over.Us kids werwe seemingly immune to the smells and black furry substances accumulating on all our homes,cars,plants, pets, etc. We must have been incredibly strong or immune because somehow we managed to live to a ripe old age. And soon we were surrounded by an entire herd of chemical plants added tothe mix. At least our air didn’t catch fire like it did in Texas City!

  • Hlouisnini

    I also was a kid who was born and grew up in Beaumont, TX – the Magnolia Refinery was on the other side of town and when the wind was right the smell of the refinery permiated our house – but he real problem was the Buris Lumber Co saw mill which was right acrss the SP tracks from our house  – the day I will never forget was the Monday when the wind cascaded hot cinders all over our house and the white bed sheets my mother had just hung out to dry after washing the by hand and a big black boiling pot fired by wood – well that was too much, she ran to the house changed from her Monday morning blues closthes washing clothes into her sunday best did the same for me and drug me by the hand the long way around the tracks to the sales office of the Buris Co. and demanded to see who ever was in charge – a six foot lankey gentleman imerged from an office, I think he was a member of the Buiris family and my five foot four inch cajun Mother tore in to him with all of the vigor a bear mother defending her cubs – in no uncertain terms she let him know what they had done toooher   white sheets in heavily cajun accente d English – I was scared to death – Mr Buris was more affraid thhan me   -   

  • Hlouisnini

    I could not finish my comment due to problems with something – Mr Buris was more scared than me.  He cowered into a corner and appoligized explaining to my mother that the cinder screen on the smoke stack had rusted through and they had korder a new one and he assured her that it would be installed immediately – with that she reversed course marched out of the office with head held high – who needs the EPA?  PS - It never happened again.

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