TipSheet

TipSheet is a weekly source for story ideas, background, interview leads and reporting tools for journalists who cover news of the environment.

Journalists can receive TipSheet free by subscribing to the SEJournal Online, the digital news magazine of the Society of Environmental Journalists. Subscribe to the e-newsletter here. TipSheet is also available through the searchable archive below and via RSS feed.

Also see searchable archives of SEJ's WatchDog TipSheet, featuring story ideas, articles, updates, events and other information with a focus on freedom-of-information issues of concern to environmental journalists in both the United States and Canada.


Latest TipSheet Items

March 30, 2011

  • If this happens, the agricultural community could suffer much as many people did after the recent housing-market implosion. It could significantly damage farmers, food production, certain banks, and bond holders who are the sole source of capital for some banks.

  • The first national report on renewable energy generation on farms and ranches indicates that the number of solar, wind, and methane digestion energy sources is increasing substantially. The US Dept. of Agriculture report, based on 2009 data, provides information on multiple factors.

  • Get your flood resources here, from the National Weather Service's National Hydrologic Assessment, FEMA's "Flood Hazard" webpage and Flood Insurance Rate Maps, to the National Flood Insurance Program's "Media Resources" site, NOAA's "Floods Monitor", USGS' "WaterWatch," advice from the CDC, and more.

  • Wildfire season has begun. Some of the areas going up in flames include the increasingly developed zone known as the wildland-urban interface, where fire risks are most apparent to people. One of the steps being taken to help reduce the hazard is fuel reduction work that thins out or removes dense tree stands, making them less prone to wildfire, or at least easier to control when they do burn.

March 16, 2011

  • Will the newly budget-conscious GOP-dominated 112th Congress fund all the nuclear loan guarantees currently available or in the pipeline? Signals from the Obama administration — even after the Japan meltdown — are that it will push forward with its nuclear plans, despite budget deficits and safety perils.

  • Here you'll find links to Japanese News Agencies; International News Sources; International and National Nuclear Agencies; Nuclear Industry Trade Groups; and Environmental, Anti-Nuclear, and Scientists' Groups

  • The aging fleet of US nuclear power reactors have some technological similarities to the reactors failing in Japan. Could similar loss-of-cooling events happen at some US reactors — whether caused by earthquake, tsunami, terrorist attack, electrical outage, flooding, equipment failure, or some other problem?

March 2, 2011

  • EPA is conducting a study of fracking, no matter where it is used (e.g., gas shale, oil shale, coalbed methane, tight sands). Public comment is being allowed as the agency's Science Advisory Board meets March 7-8, 2011, to review the draft study plan. Initial study and research results are possible by the end of 2012, and a report may be published some time in 2014.

  • States and territories have just been allocated about three-quarters of a billion dollars for their use in building facilities, providing services, and conducting planning and research related to fishing, hunting, wildlife conservation, and recreational opportunities. This is a gold mine for local environmental stories.

  • USDA's atlas provides data, at the county level, on scores of agricultural, demographic, and economic topics. Or on the national map, pick any given category and get an initial feel for national patterns, then click on individual counties for more detail. All data can be downloaded so you can work with it any way you want, and maps can be downloaded for your use. 

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