Freelance food systems reporter Thin Lei Win believes that if the world doesn’t change the way it produces, processes, transports, consumes and discards food, climate change will worsen and hunger levels will spike. But she also worries that powerful interests want to keep the status quo and cites parallels with the tobacco and fossil fuel industries. More in Freelance Files, including places for freelancers to pitch climate-food stories.
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.
The mining of the ocean floor has stirred up significant debate, much of which clouds the realities of whether and to what degree it would cause ecological harm to one of the world’s greatest resources. This week’s TipSheet looks more closely at the controversy, which may well come to a head in the coming year. The latest entry in SEJournal’s 2024 Journalists’ Guide to Environment and Energy.
"It’s a billion-dollar decision. Probably many billions. And people all around Alabama are waiting anxiously for the feds to decide what happens next. Can Alabama leave its 100 million tons of coal ash where the utilities dumped it, in unlined ditches along the rivers across the state?"
"The open-cast crater seems ready to swallow the city whole. Mud-brick houses with corrugated iron roofs teeter on the edge of the massive Raúl Rojas mining pit, now lined with razor wire, which stretches nearly 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) across and is 300 meters, or more than a quarter of a mile, deep. This is the center of Cerro de Pasco, a city in central Peru, sitting at an elevation of more than 4,300 m (14,100 feet) above sea level."
"A federal appeals court on Thursday is tossing the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ban on a pesticide that has been linked to brain damage in children."
"With last year’s undersea volcano injecting massive amounts of water high into the atmosphere, scientists were bracing for a big Antarctica ozone hole this fall. But it didn’t happen. Instead this year’s ozone hole was about average size for the last 20 years, even a bit smaller than 2022’s, according to NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration."
"An exclusive Inside Climate News analysis found companies have spilled nearly 150 million gallons of toxic, highly saline wastewater in Texas over the last decade."
"Humanity is messing with the Earth’s “salt cycle,” with potentially dangerous consequences for drinking water supplies, crop production, and ecosystems. That’s according to a new study published in the journal Nature Reviews Earth & Environment on Tuesday."
"The container shipping lines that carry the bulk of global trade are betting on greener technologies, but there are still reasons those wagers could fail."