Inside Story

Reporting on Poor, Kids Sickened by Industrial Air Pollution

Pittsburgh is known for its history of steel production … and of air pollution. In the new Inside Story, reporter Kristina Marusic talks about capturing the health impacts of air emissions in western Pennsylvania, and shares insights on how dogged environmental justice reporting can make the links between pollution cuts and health impacts. Plus, tips on managing a long reporting project, creating infographics and using video.

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How a Lauded Reporter’s ‘Open Mind’ Led Story in a Surprising Direction

An investigation into lead poisoning treatment policies prompted some very unexpected conclusions for one long-time investigative journalist, whose deeply reported and surprising projects won plaudits from judges for the Society of Environmental Journalists’ annual awards. Find out how Charles Schmidt turned an aside from a source into a penetrating look at a critical public health and environmental challenge.

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Radio Reporter Takes Listener on Journey in Covering Future of Western U.S.

Perpetual water scarcity issues in the Colorado River basin provide a bounty of stories for public radio journalist Luke Runyon, who shares insights into his beat coverage practices, in the latest Inside Story Q&A. The greatest challenges, surprises and lessons in reporting these critical stories, lauded in SEJ’s awards program, through the medium of sound.

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Small-Market Reporter Gives Readers Reason To Care

Reporter Kyle Bagenstose has impressed Society of Environmental Journalists’ awards judges three times in the last four years with his investigative and small-market beat reporting on local and regional issues in Pennsylvania. In our latest Inside Story Q&A, Bagenstose discusses his award-winning work as a beat reporter and his first-place investigative prize for a series on the cleanup of toxic firefighting chemicals from streams and aquifers around military bases.

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Sick Schools in the City of Brotherly Love

A Philadelphia Inquirer investigation into environmental harm suffered by the city’s children, minorities and poor dived into the “decaying infrastructure” of the city schools. The result? Findings of dangerous levels of lead, mold and asbestos, followed by an influx of funding to fix the problems and awards from journalism colleagues. For Inside Story, a Q&A with a reporter for the "Toxic City: Sick Schools" exposé.

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Climate Narrative Gets to the Personal Behind the Public

When the New York Times Magazine published “Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change” as its full issue in August 2018, the reaction to Nathaniel Rich’s piece was immediate and polemic. Today, as some analysts speak of Joe Biden’s efforts to position himself as “the climate President,” SEJournal asks Rich to explain his contribution to the public conversation on policy, action and climate.

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Letting Residents Take the Lead in ‘Polluter's Paradise’

A battery of polluting industry spewing toxic pollution and a small town of residents south of Baton Rouge unbowed by their circumstance make for the ingredients of a powerful team investigative project, newly named to the top prize in the Society of Environmental Journalists’ 2020 reporting awards. Inside Story offers a look behind “Polluter’s Paradise” in a Q&A with reporter Tristan Baurick.

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‘The Power of Partnerships’ Helps Uncover America’s Energy Gamble

It took teams of journalists to produce an award-winning series of reports digging into environment and climate health effects of massive oil and natural gas production in the Southwestern United States. Our latest Inside Story talks with Jamie Smith Hopkins of the Center for Public Integrity about the benefits of reporting a big story jointly and the project’s sometimes surprising findings.

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Small-Market Reporter Unmasks Race Gap in Pollution Response

When two towns — one an affluent suburb and the other a poor rural community — faced similar air pollution crises, lopsided government action made clear there was an underlying race and class divide. Reporter Sharon Lerner shares the story behind her award-winning reporting that tells the “Tale of Two Toxic Cities,” in our latest Inside Story Q&A.

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How Explanatory Reporting Can Define a Challenged Landscape

To cover the wide range of challenges affecting his Mountain State, a small market beat reporter won plaudits first by becoming a close student of the issues and then boiling them down to the basics for his audience. Inside Story’s Q&A explores the resulting award-winning journalism on topics like water law and public lands, groundwater pollution and protected species.

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