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).



President Obama used the State of the Union speech to talk up the state of the domestic fuel industry.


PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Today, America is closer to energy independence than we have been in decades. One of the reasons why is natural gas.

Cold weather this week has boosted demand for heating fuels across the country. Natural gas prices are up, especially in the Northeast. At one point prices for natural gas into New York City jumped nearly tenfold from an average winter price of $5.68 per million BTU to $55.49, according to Bentek Energy, an analytics company.



This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board are in the small town of Casselton, North Dakota, trying to learn what caused a fiery train crash. It's the latest in a series of accidents involving trains hauling crude oil. By far the most destruction happened last summer in Canada, where the center of a town in Quebec was destroyed, leaving 47 people dead.



In a Philadelphia courtroom today, a judge agreed to release a Catholic Church official who's serving prison time for his handling of sexual abuse claims. Last week, a Pennsylvania appeals court overturned Monsignor William Lynn's 2012 conviction. NPR's Jeff Brady reports.

Oil giant BP is challenging hundreds of millions of dollars in claims that were filed by businesses after the company's 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

The total price tag for BP's oil spill is huge — $42.5 billion. At issue here is a fraction of that — but still a lot of money. BP says $540 million has been awarded to businesses for losses that "are either nonexistent, exaggerated or have nothing to do with the Deepwater Horizon accident."

The state of New York effectively has a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing as the government figures out how to regulate the controversial drilling technology. Still, the state is benefiting from a fracking-fueled drilling boom in next-door Pennsylvania.

For decades, oil has been the fuel of choice for thousands of residential buildings in New York City. But now there are fewer chimneys spewing black smoke. That's because the city has a program encouraging owners to convert to cleaner-burning natural gas.

Two large industries — agriculture and oil — are fighting a pitched battle over access to your car's fuel tank. Americans are buying less gasoline, but a federal law requires the country to include an increasing amount of corn-based ethanol in the country's fuel supply. Facing billions of dollars in lost sales, the oil industry wants the government to reverse course on ethanol.

One of the effects of Superstorm Sandy a year ago could be seen at service stations throughout New York City and surrounding areas: Motorists joined long lines outside the few stations that had both electricity and gasoline.

"People were fighting over here. People were fighting over there. People were coming through the wrong way. It was chaos," Jessica Laura said at the time. "Then the cops came, and they just started organizing it."

Since then, the oil industry and policymakers have been working to shore up the region's fuel supply system.



From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.


And I'm Robert Siegel. Penn State announced today that it will pay nearly $60 million to settle child sexual abuse claims related to the Jerry Sandusky scandal. For much of the past year, the university has been negotiating settlements with more than two dozen people who say they were victims of Sandusky.


JEFF BRADY, BYLINE: I'm Jeff Brady, and in downtown Philadelphia at Independence National Historical Park, tourists are lining up outside the Liberty Bell again.

CHARLES CUMMINGS: My name's Charles Cummings. This is my wife, Marilyn. We're from Little Rock, Arkansas.

BRADY: Seeing the building where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were debated and signed has Cummings thinking: What if today's politicians were around when the country was being formed?

In a New Orleans courtroom this week, BP and the federal government are arguing over how much oil gushed into the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon explosion in 2010.

Oil flowed from the out-of-control well for nearly three months. Just how much oil spilled will be key in determining the amount BP will have to pay in federal fines and penalties.



From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.


And I'm Melissa Block.

In Pennsylvania, more than a half-million people who don't have insurance are waiting to hear whether the state will take advantage of a Medicaid expansion that's part of the Affordable Care Act.

The federal law would allow people earning up to 138 percent of federal poverty guidelines to sign up for Medicaid. But a Supreme Court ruling that largely upheld the law gave states the choice whether to expand their Medicaid programs.

The Philadelphia school system was forced to cut millions of dollars from its budget, lay off hundreds of employees and shutter nearly two dozen schools to help close a billion dollar shortfall. Some principals are asking parents to "contribute" as much as $600 per student to help pay for basic supplies and the school superintendent threatened to delay the start of classes this month until the city kicked in $50 million to cover the minimum level of staffing.

Many outsiders assume the Amish reject all new technology. But that's not true.

One Amish man in Lancaster County, Pa., checks his voicemail about four times a day. His shop is equipped with a propane-powered forklift, hydraulic-powered saws, cordless drills, and a refrigerated tank where milk from dairy cows is stored.

Americans are buying less gasoline than they did just a few years back. While many people believe this is a good thing, it does present a problem: Most road construction is paid for with fuel taxes. Less gas tax revenue means less money for roads.

One reason gas purchases are down is that more people are driving more efficient cars, such as hybrid and electric vehicles. Now states are looking for solutions, including charging hybrids extra fees or imposing fees based on miles driven.

The rail company involved in the explosion that killed 47 people in a small Quebec town last month has filed for bankruptcy. The bankruptcy is a direct result of the explosion, in which a run-away train carrying oil derailed and blew up not far from the Maine-Quebec border.

If you work for Penn State and don't agree to step on a scale or have your waist measured, it could soon cost you $100 a month. The Pennsylvania State University is joining a growing list of employers penalizing workers who want company-sponsored health benefits but refuse to participate in health improvement programs.

University officials say they need to take dramatic steps to reduce health care costs, and getting their workers in shape is one way to do it.



Today, a guilty plea in the case of the Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico. A subsidiary of Halliburton has agreed to plead guilty to charges that it destroyed evidence connected to the disaster. The oil rig exploded in 2010, killing 11 workers, launching a massive oil spill. NPR's Jeff Brady tells us more.



From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

An offshore drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico is on fire. Regulators say the rig has partially collapsed. It all began yesterday when members of a drilling crew lost control of a natural gas well they were completing. The crew was evacuated from the rig as a cloud of gas escaped into the air. And then last night, the gas caught fire. NPR's Jeff Brady tells us more.

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In rural eastern Quebec, crews are still searching for dozens of people still reported missing after a train carrying oil and derailed and erupted into a fiery ball on Saturday. Authorities have confirmed five deaths. The accident comes as more oil than ever is moving by railroad, and that's raising questions about safety.

NPR's Jeff Brady reports.

The documentary Gasland inspired legions of "fracktivists" to oppose natural gas drilling booms across the country. Now the film has a sequel. Gasland Part II by director Josh Fox begins airing on HBO Monday night.

Gay rights activists celebrated two big victories this week before the U.S. Supreme Court, as justices overturned the Defense of Marriage Act and cleared the way for same-sex marriages in California.

Now gay marriage opponents and supporters are turning their attention to individual states, like New Jersey, where polls show most residents support same-sex marriage. So far, one person, Gov. Chris Christie, has stood in the way.



And before leaving on his trip to Africa, President Obama had some other words on another subject. He announced a wide-ranging plan to address climate change. Rather than taking that plan to Congress and fighting it out, Obama is using his executive powers to implement it without new laws. The president wants the Environmental Protection Agency to restrict carbon-dioxide emissions from power plants. The biggest source of those emissions is coal-fired facilities.

Lots of passionate people are taking up farming these days, motivated by frustration with industrial farming, concerns about the environment, and a desire to build community and local food markets. Some of these new farmers have joined the Grange, a long-established fraternal organization for farmers with roots in social activism.

In Oregon, Granges dominated by this new generation have banded together in a coalition dubbed "Green Granges," which work together to advance the issues they care about.

A woman was killed when a four-story building collapsed in Philadelphia on Wednesday. A dozen others were rescued from the rubble.

A radical shift in the world energy picture is raising environmental concerns in the United States.

Until recently, the U.S. had been expected to import more natural gas. But now, because of controversial technologies like "fracking," drillers are producing a lot more domestic natural gas; so much that prices are down, along with industry profits. And drillers are looking overseas for new customers.



A Philadelphia doctor who performed late-term abortions is now facing multiple murder convictions and a possible death sentence. A jury found Kermit Gosnell guilty on three counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of three babies that prosecutors said were delivered alive and then killed. Gosnell was also found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the death of a female patient. He was acquitted on one count of murder in a fourth abortion.



Organizers gave that service in Boston a title: Healing Our City. Thousands of people took part both inside the cathedral and outside.

NPR's Jeff Brady spoke with Bostonians about this moment of collective remembrance.

JEFF BRADY, BYLINE: A theme emerged during the service, expressed here by Rev. Nancy Taylor.

THE REV. NANCY TAYLOR: We are shaken, but we are not forsaken. Another's hate will not make of us haters.