Jeff Brady

Jeff Brady is a NPR National Desk Correspondent based in Philadelphia. He covers the mid-Atlantic region and the energy industry.

In this role, Brady reports on the business of energy, from concerns over hydraulic fracturing in Western Pennsylvania to the oil boom in North Dakota and solar developments in the desert Southwest. With a focus on the consumer, Brady's reporting addresses how the energy industry intersects consumers' perspective at the gas pump and light switch.

Frequently traveling throughout the country for NPR, Brady has covered just about every major domestic news event in the past decade. Before moving to Philadelphia in July 2011, Brady was based in Denver and covered the west for NPR.

In 2005, Brady was among the NPR reporters who covered the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. His reporting on flooded cars left behind after the storm exposed efforts to stall the implementation of a national car titling system. Today, the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System is operational and the Department of Justice estimates it could save car buyers up to $11 billion a year.

Before coming to NPR in September 2003, Brady was a reporter at Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB) in Portland. He has also worked in commercial television as an anchor and a reporter; and commercial radio as a talk-show host and reporter.

Brady graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Southern Oregon State College (now Southern Oregon University).

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The Two-Way
6:53 am
Wed July 11, 2012

In Scranton, Pa., City Workers Sue Over Having Wages Slashed

Roger Leonard, a heavy equipment operator for the city of Scranton, Pa., saw his pay plunge to $340 from about $900 for two weeks' work after the mayor cut city-employee pay to minimum wage.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 9:32 am

The city of Scranton, Penn. now faces two federal lawsuits over a decision last week to slash public employee's pay to minimum wage. Unions representing the city's workers also are asking Lackawanna County Judge Michael Barrasse to hold Mayor Chris Doherty in contempt of court.

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Planet Money
7:03 am
Tue July 10, 2012

Scranton Workers See Pay Slashed To Minimum Wage

Roger Leonard saw his pay plunge to $340 from about $900 for two weeks' work, after Scranton's mayor unilaterally cut city-employee pay to minimum wage.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 11:02 am

A fight between political leaders in Scranton, Pa., has left each and every city employee earning $7.25 an hour — minimum wage.

Last week Mayor Chris Doherty slashed pay, on his own, saying Scranton had run out of money. Lackawanna County Judge Michael Barrasse issued an injunction telling the city it must recognize pay rates spelled out in union contracts. But Doherty continues to violate that court order.

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Around the Nation
7:55 am
Sat July 7, 2012

Scranton's Public Workers' Pay Cut to Minimum Wage

Originally published on Sat July 7, 2012 3:29 pm

The city of Scranton, Pa., sent out paychecks to its employees Friday, like it does every two weeks. But this time the checks were much smaller than usual. Mayor Chris Doherty has reduced everyone's pay — including his own — to the state's minimum wage: $7.25 an hour.

Doherty says his city has run out of money.

Scranton has had financial troubles for a couple of decades — the town has been losing population since the end of World War II. But the budget problems became more serious in recent months as the mayor and the city council fought over how to balance the budget.

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Around the Nation
6:29 am
Sat June 30, 2012

Colorado Firefighters Gain Ground On Blaze

Nearly 350 homes have been destroyed by the Waldo Canyon fire in Colorado.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 30, 2012 2:54 pm

Firefighters are slowly gaining ground on the Waldo Canyon fire in Colorado. It's scorched about 17,000 acres and believed to have claimed two lives.

More than 300 homes have burned. There's been a lot of talk about how many houses were lost in the fire, but Colorado Springs Fire Chief Rich Brown wants you to know there's a flip side to that: He says crews worked hard to minimize damage.

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Around the Nation
3:13 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Cooler Temperatures Mean Better News For Colorado

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 6:32 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. In Colorado today, some optimism, despite the hundreds of homes that have been destroyed by a wildfire. Since Saturday, the Waldo Canyon fire has scorched an area about four miles wide by seven miles long. Wind and hot, dry weather helped fan the flames and helped them spread quickly.

Now, as NPR's Jeff Brady reports from Colorado Springs, the weather has improved for fire crews.

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Around the Nation
6:37 am
Sat June 23, 2012

'Who Would Believe A Kid?' The Sandusky Jury

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky leaves court in handcuffs Friday after being convicted in his child sex abuse trial at the Centre County Courthouse in Pennsylvania.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 23, 2012 10:15 pm

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky spent what could be the first of many nights behind bars Friday after a jury found him guilty of sexually abusing 10 boys over a 15-year period.

In Bellefonte, Pa., Friday night, a crowd outside the county courthouse cheered when the guilty verdicts were announced.

The cheers continued as Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly praised the investigators and prosecutors at her side.

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Law
5:34 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Pa. Jury To Resume Deliberations In Sandusky Trial

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 6:17 am

Jerry Sandusky's trial on child sexual abuse charges is in the jury's hands. As they consider the 48 counts filed against the former Penn State assistant football coach, new allegations have emerged. Sandusky's adopted son now says he's also a victim.

Energy
4:51 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Gulf Refinery Expansion May Not Cut Gas Prices

Expanding the refinery at Port Arthur, Texas, took five years and $10 billion. The facility can now process 600,000 barrels a day.
Motiva Enterprises

Originally published on Mon June 4, 2012 6:44 pm

In Texas recently there was a grand opening for what is now the largest refinery in the U.S. Shell and Saudi Arabia's national oil company, Saudi Aramco, have more than doubled the capacity of their Port Arthur refinery.

The refinery business has been going through a tough period in recent years. Americans are buying less gasoline and other petroleum products — about 10 percent less than in 2005, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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Election 2012
3:51 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

GOP Hopes Pennsylvania's Still Got That Swing

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney participates in a 6th-grade language arts class with Salina Beattie and other students at Universal Bluford Charter School on Thursday in Philadelphia.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 8:37 pm

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was talking about education policy Thursday in Philadelphia.

Pennsylvania, with its 20 electoral votes, is a frequent stop for presidential candidates. But, amid a campaign likely to focus on a handful of battleground states, some are starting to wonder if Pennsylvania is still a swing state.

At the Universal Bluford Charter School in a largely African-American neighborhood in West Philadelphia, Romney toured a computer lab, helped students with an assignment in language arts class and listened to the kids sing.

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Energy
2:26 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

Pipeline Flip Turns U.S. Oil World 'Upside Down'

The U.S. oil boom has created a glut of crude in Cushing, Okla., a major oil storage hub. This sign dubs the city the "Pipeline Crossroads of the World."
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 5:34 pm

For years, Cushing, Okla., has been on the receiving end of a 500-mile pipeline funneling oil from the Gulf of Mexico to the American heartland.

Starting this weekend, that pipeline will start moving crude in the other direction. That flow reversal could soon have implications at gas pumps around the country.

"For 40 years, crude oil flowed north," says Philip Verleger, a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. "Today, oil flows south. It's as if we turned the world upside down."

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Education
5:44 am
Mon May 14, 2012

Budget Woes Could Close Philly's Problem Schools

Philadelphia's school district plans to close a quarter of its school buildings in coming years to eliminate a huge budget hole. But parents and activists don't trust the decision-makers. Many of them suspect the plan is a ruse to force charter schools and privatization on the district.

Around the Nation
2:22 am
Fri April 20, 2012

As Workers Age, Oil Industry Braces For Skills Gap

The Deepwater Horizon oil rig burns in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010. The rig's crew were new to their positions just before the explosion. Such staffing reorganizations are increasingly common as the industry grapples with a staffing shortage.
U.S. Coast Guard Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 8:11 am

Two years after the Deepwater Horizon accident killed 11 men and sent oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico, the oil industry says it has learned valuable lessons from the disaster that are making drilling safer today.

But there's still a pressing issue looming for the oil industry: Oil field workers are retiring in huge numbers, leaving a workforce that's younger and — more importantly — less experienced.

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Business
3:00 am
Wed April 11, 2012

Wireless Industry Tries To Thwart Smartphone Thefts

The wireless phone industry has a plan to take the profit out of the market for stolen smartphones. At the urging of police chiefs across the country and federal regulators, the industry is developing a database of stolen devices.

All Tech Considered
12:02 pm
Thu March 29, 2012

Using An App To Report Injured Wildlife

A rescued bobcat waits to be fed at a wild animal sanctuary in Keenesburg, Colo.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 29, 2012 12:04 pm

If you find an injured bird in your back yard, do you know who to call? The Boulder, Colo., group Animal Watch has developed a free iPhone and iPad application and a website called AnimalHelpNow designed to assist with such an emergency. The app and site only work for locations in Colorado, but its developers hope to expand the program nationally.

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All Tech Considered
12:58 pm
Mon March 26, 2012

Finding Cheaper Gas With Your Smartphone

The GasBuddy app and website rely on crowdsourcing — people across the country sending in gas prices.
NPR

Originally published on Mon March 26, 2012 5:35 pm

Gasoline prices seem to be going up every day, and motorists are looking to squeeze every penny of savings out of each fill-up. Well, as it turns out with so many things these days, smartphone apps can help.

Companies have applications for most smartphones out there to help people find the cheapest gas in town. I tried out six applications on an iPhone and narrowed the selection to two that I found the easiest to use: GasBuddy and Fuel Finder.

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Energy
11:01 pm
Wed March 14, 2012

Surging Gas Prices Have Drivers Fuming

A driver pumps gas in Los Angeles, where prices are among the highest in the country, topping $4 a gallon.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Gasoline prices have risen about 50 cents a gallon since January. The national average for regular gas stands at just above $3.80 per gallon.

Pity the drivers on the West Coast. Prices there have been much higher. At a Chevron station in Culver City, Calif., the price on Tuesday was $4.45 a gallon.

"I do building maintenance," Ursula Matthews said as she filled her tank. "I do a lot of driving from place to place. It's hurting me. I cannot raise the prices [of my services] with the economy what it is."

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Around the Nation
2:24 pm
Wed March 7, 2012

'Les Bon Temps Rouler' To The Auction Block

A 1974 Gremlin covered with Mardi Gras beads is part of the auction lot of items from the former Kenner Mardi Gras Museum. The car is expected to draw several bids.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Wed March 7, 2012 5:08 pm

In New Orleans, the 2012 Mardi Gras is just a memory. But for those who collect Mardi Gras memorabilia, the celebration lasts all year.

Some of those collectors will be at the Kenner Mardi Gras Museum on Thursday. It's about a half-hour drive from the French Quarter — not a convenient trip for many tourists, and declining attendance is one reason it closed after two decades. Now its collection will be auctioned.

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The Two-Way
3:53 pm
Fri February 24, 2012

Monsanto Agrees To Pay Up $93 Million In Agent Orange Settlement

We are getting more details about that preliminary agreement to settle an "Agent Orange" related class-action lawsuit filed against the Monsanto Company. We reported yesterday that Monsanto agreed to settle a case over pollution claims made on behalf of current and former residents of the small town of Nitro, West Virginia.

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The Two-Way
4:27 pm
Thu February 23, 2012

Monsanto Reaches Settlement On Agent Orange Class-Action Suit

A proposed settlement has been reached in a big class-action lawsuit against Monsanto. The case is connected to the company's production of the controversial herbicide "Agent Orange," the defoliant the military sprayed over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War.

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Energy
3:03 pm
Mon February 13, 2012

Natural Gas Boom Energizing The Chemical Industry

A Shell-owned ethylene cracker plant on Pulau Bukom, Singapore. Several U.S. states are competing for a similar plant the company plans to build in northern Appalachia.
Courtesy of Shell Chemicals

Originally published on Mon February 13, 2012 7:19 pm

Just outside of West Virginia's capital city, Charleston, on the banks of the Kanawha River, sits the Institute Industrial Park. Chemical plants have operated here continuously since World War II, when the local factories cranked out synthetic rubber. Today there are industrial pipes, tanks and buildings stretching in just about every direction.

Soon, there could be more.

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Around the Nation
11:01 pm
Tue January 31, 2012

Monsanto Accused In Suit Tied To Agent Orange

The town of Nitro has its beginnings in 1917, when the U.S. government created it as a place to locate a munitions plant.
Jeff Brady NPR

For about two decades, ending in 1971, a former Monsanto chemical plant in West Virginia produced the herbicide 2,4,5-T which was used in "Agent Orange" — the defoliant the military sprayed over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War.

Now, Monsanto faces a class-action lawsuit, filed on behalf of people living where the herbicide was manufactured in Nitro, W.Va.

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Remembrances
3:00 am
Mon January 23, 2012

Paterno's Death Is A Sad Day For Happy Valley

Legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno died Sunday at the age of 85. He was fired by the university last fall following the sexual abuse charges against one of his former coaches.

Sports
3:58 pm
Sun January 22, 2012

Legendary Football Coach Joe Paterno Mourned

Outside Penn State's football stadium, mourners paid respects to legendary football coach Joe Paterno who died Sunday from lung cancer.

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Politics
11:01 pm
Wed January 18, 2012

Rejected Pipeline Becomes Hot-Button Election Issue

The Syncrude tar sands mine in Alberta, Canada. Alberta's tar sands would supply the oil for the prospective Keystone XL pipeline.
Todd Korol Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu January 19, 2012 7:17 pm

President Obama rejected an application to build the 1,700-mile Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast on Wednesday. He blamed congressional Republicans, who had set a 60-day deadline for his administration to complete its review of the project.

Just minutes after Obama issued a statement denying the permit, Republican members of Congress lined up before TV cameras.

"I'm deeply, deeply disappointed that our president decided to put his politics above the nation," said Rep. Lee Terry of Nebraska.

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Around the Nation
4:48 pm
Thu January 12, 2012

Heavy Lobbying Before Keystone Oil Pipeline Decision

The Syncrude tar sands mine north of Fort McMurray, Alberta, is seen in November. Alberta's tar sands would supply the oil for the prospective Keystone XL pipeline.
Todd Korol Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 9:12 pm

The oil industry and environmentalists are fighting over the Keystone XL pipeline, and in this election year, President Obama is caught in the middle.

The industry says the pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada to the Gulf Coast, would create jobs. Environmentalists worry it will lead to more pollution. Obama has until next month to make a decision, and that has both sides lobbying heavily.

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It's All Politics
11:01 pm
Thu January 5, 2012

Rick Santorum: The Underdog With A Loud Bark

Rick Santorum receives a call at his campaign headquarters during his Senate re-election bid in 2006. The former senator was attempting to keep his Pennsylvania Senate seat, which he later lost to Democrat Bob Casey, Jr.
Jeff Swensen Getty Images

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is campaigning in New Hampshire after finishing a very close second in the Iowa caucuses. His success in the Hawkeye State was a surprise because Santorum was polling in the single digits there just a few weeks back.

For Santorum, surprising the political establishment is nothing new. Since he was first elected to Congress in 1990 — at 32 years old — Santorum has made a career out of being the underdog and usually winning.

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Energy
11:01 pm
Wed January 4, 2012

Solar Panels Compete With Cheap Natural Gas

Barbara Scott and Mac Given in Media, Pa., had 21 solar panels installed last March. With government rebates and tax incentives, Scott says, her family spent $21,000 to install the system.
Jeff Brady NPR

Renewable energy is growing rapidly in the U.S., with wind and solar industries enjoying double-digit growth each year. Part of that growth comes from more homeowners choosing to install solar panels.

With government subsidies, some people can even make a financial argument for installing the panels. But in recent years, the price of one fossil fuel — natural gas — has declined so much that solar panels are having difficulty competing.

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Business
12:37 pm
Thu December 29, 2011

Gas Pains? U.S. Diesel, Gas Exports Surpass Imports

For the first time in more than six decades, the United States is exporting more gasoline and diesel than it imports.

To be clear, we're talking about finished petroleum products, not crude oil. The U.S. still imports about half the crude it consumes.

Refineries are touting this new export statistic — after all, gasoline and diesel are manufactured products. They say a boost in exports keeps more manufacturing jobs in the U.S. But one reason exports are increasing is that demand for gas in this country is declining.

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Around the Nation
7:00 am
Sat December 17, 2011

Penn State Officials Face Trial In Sex Abuse Case

Originally published on Sat December 17, 2011 9:24 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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