National (U.S.)

Prize-winner Looks for ‘Stories that Surprise’

An unexpected story, a never-before-seen photo — those are ingredients for the kinds of environment and climate story ideas that won one environment reporter top honors in large market beat reporting in SEJ’s annual awards last year. A conversation with Craig Welch of National Geographic for our latest Inside Story Q&A.

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Coal Ash Ruling Will Generate Piles of State-level News

Now that a top court has tossed out parts of coal ash disposal rules, also in question is a planned loosening under the Trump EPA. That means potential state-level stories on how this coal combustion byproduct may threaten environmental health and water supplies. This week’s TipSheet runs down the issue and suggests resources and questions to ask.

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Ditching Plastic Straws — A Strawman for the Real Problem of Marine Litter?

Plastic straws might have quickly become this summer’s bogeyman, with bans by Starbucks, hotel chains, resorts and some big cities. But as this week’s TipSheet points out, straws are only a part of the massive marine litter problem facing the world’s oceans. Here’s how to put recent straw bans into broader perspective.

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Too Late To Wait for Covering Infrastructure Vulnerability, Resilience

Could U.S. infrastructure go from being a saver of lives to a bringer of disaster? Yes, warns our latest Issue Backgrounder, which looks at vulnerabilities for our drinking water supply, sewage systems, flood control, power grids, pipelines, refineries and even hospitals. Are environmental reporters paying enough attention? Here’s why they should, with suggestions on how to go about it.

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New Leadership, Old Business and Future Challenges

​A call to confront anti-press sentiment with a crusade for the value of journalism, plus a welcome for the new executive director for the Society of Environmental Journalists, and important housekeeping on voting rights for SEJ’s academic and associate members — all in the new report from SEJ President Bobby Magill.

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When Travel Expenses Get Too Expensive

A big reporting jaunt can be a professional thrill. That is, until you consider the upfront costs you might be expected to shoulder as an independent journalist. The latest Freelance Files, from multimedia journalist Gloria Dickie, looks at the realities of travel expenses and offers half-a-dozen workarounds to lighten the load.

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