Pope Francis’ planned history-making trip to the latest global climate conference has been thwarted by illness. But his passionate advocacy for the environment still will be felt through his hot-off-the-press apostolic exhortation about the climate crisis. National Catholic Reporter’s environment correspondent Brian Roewe unpacks the pope’s new eco-document and explains how it relates to international climate diplomacy at and beyond Dubai.
Reporting on interconnected ecosystems lends itself to better environmental stories, and so tracing how water moves across landscapes, communities, industries and regulatory schemes can help the public connect the dots. That’s how Annie Ropeik, who helps run the Mississippi River Basin Ag & Water Desk, sees the watershed beat. She shares expert views and offers insights for environment journalists to use in their reporting.
Reporting on environmental stories often leads to the state legislature, where key material can be frustratingly hard to access. Whether that’s because the state is deliberately hiding information, has poor systems for sharing it or isn’t even tracking it, there are ways to get what you need. Four seasoned environment reporters offer tips, tricks and commiseration.
As hurricane season ramps up, how are the disaster planners considering those with disabilities in your community? Texas-based journalist Greg Harman shares the story of one group that sued their city over claims it failed to properly prepare. And he extracts some rules of thumb to help determine if emergency planners are taking those with disabilities into consideration where you are.
Major storms hit hard and fast. Successful on-the-ground coverage requires advance prep and consideration of how to deal with challenges. Seasoned reporter Emily Foxhall has learned a lot from Hurricane Harvey and other disasters — sometimes the hard way. She shares tips for planning, packing and getting colleagues back home to help with logistics, plus some reminders about self-care.
Journalists who lack a strong science background can find themselves in deep water when reporting environmental stories. How do you avoid over- or understating research findings? What’s the difference between observational and experimental studies? And what about those pesky percentages? Former Washington Post science reporter Rick Weiss and his SciLine colleagues have some answers.
After a massive fire at a Texas petrochemical storage facility, reporters from Public Health Watch and The Texas Tribune worked together to shed light on who was responsible for this disaster and what health threats had been hidden from the public. This behind-the-scenes report from Public Health Watch’s David Leffler and Savanna Strott looks at the challenges the team faced and how they overcame them.
Reporters covering floods, fires and other weather-driven disasters sometimes hesitate to link these extreme events to climate change. But TV meteorologists increasingly see an opportunity — and a responsibility — to help local audiences better understand the connections. Their unique relationship with viewers makes it easier to get past partisan divisions, while innovative tools are providing new ways to communicate information.
In his more than a decade at the helm of the Food & Environment Reporting Network, Samuel Fromartz was instrumental in shaping a new way of covering food, agriculture and environmental issues. As he prepares to turn over the top editor’s job to his successor, Fromartz talks about FERN’s innovative business model and the power of narrative.
The complicated interplay between climate change and trauma, poorly understood and little covered, is holding back the response by individuals and communities to the realities of the climate crisis, argues the head of a network of mental health and other organizations. Here’s what he has found when it comes to how climate-generated anguish is blocking climate solutions and what can be done about it.