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Pulitzer Center Update April 19, 2024

Honoring Earth Day Through Environmental Reporting 🌏


Indonesia has been facing the devastating consequences of climate change.

Resda, a 60-year-old farmer and fisher of the Serawai Indigenous community in Pasar Seluma village. Together with other residents, Resda has been at the forefront in the fight against iron sand mining concessions. She fears that iron sand mining activities will destroy her village. Image by Adi Renaldi. Indonesia.

Earth Day: A time to engage with climate coverage

The Pulitzer Center’s climate and environment initiatives support journalism and audience engagement on the most pressing issues facing our planet’s ecosystems and the communities who rely on them. In honor of Earth Day this Monday, we are highlighting some recent stories and upcoming opportunities to engage with journalists reporting on these issues.

In a four-part investigation for The Africa Report, Musinguzi Blanshe traces the illegal trade of Congolese timber across East Africa. His project shows how timber from the DRC is processed and exported to countries around the world, how laws are abused, and how recent history has fueled the trade.

For the China Global South Project, Adi Renaldi reports on how “dark sand” mining for Indonesia’s iron exports to China is contributing to tsunami risks and threatening food security for local communities, featuring interviews with fisherfolk and farmers.

Reporting on the Amazon for NPR, Simeon Tegel explores how gold mining—the “illegal gold rush”—in the Peruvian Amazon has caused environmental and community devastation, and how nonprofits are now partnering with miners in an effort to address the damage.

Many of the student journalists in our Campus Consortium Reporting Fellows program use their projects to address the ongoing environmental crisis. Each year, their stories cover a range of climate change-related topics, with some of our most recent projects touching on whaling practices in the Arctic and climate migration in Mongolia.

The Reporting Fellows program will mark this ongoing commitment next week with “On Thin Ice,” a special online panel on climate adaptation efforts around the world. Please join us on Tuesday, April 23, 2024, at 6:30pm EDT to learn more about how Pulitzer Center journalists are covering one of the most urgent issues of our time. Interested educators can also learn about engaging students on climate migration issues during a virtual workshop on April 25.

We are still actively recruiting reporters for our second cohort of Ocean Reporting Network Fellows. If you are a journalist interested in reporting on ocean issues, applications are open until May 26. We accept proposals in five languages.

Explore our Climate and Environment focus area for the latest climate stories, and don’t forget to follow the Pulitzer Center’s rainforest and ocean social media accounts, @Rainforest_RIN and @Ocean_ORN, for reporting, resources, and updates from these programs.


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Students in black t-shirts from Excel Academy pose with journalist Ashonti Ford following her keynote speech at the Everyday DC student symposium at the Charles Sumner Museum and Archives in Washington, D.C
Students from Excel Academy pose with journalist Ashonti Ford following her keynote speech at the Everyday DC student symposium at the Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives in Washington, D.C. Image by Grace Jensen. United States, 2024.

The Pulitzer Center’s Everyday DC student photography exhibition celebrated its opening reception on March 28, 2024. Over 70 students had a first look at their photos on display and learned from journalist grantee Ashonti Ford in a student symposium; later, an opening reception for the public included speeches from students and a dance performance.

The photo exhibition presents a visual narrative of Washington, D.C., through the eyes of over 150 D.C. students from 10 public middle schools in all four quadrants of the city. It is the culmination of a multi-week photojournalism Cornerstone unit designed by the Pulitzer Center and D.C. Public Schools (DCPS). Read more about the annual event here.

The exhibition is free and open to the public at the Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives in Washington, D.C., from Monday to Friday through June 7, 2024. 

Photo of the Week

an elephant grabs trunkfuls of sugarcane from a truck
Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary, Chachoengsao province. From the story "A Fragile Coexistence: Humans and Elephants in Eastern Thailand." Image by Luke Duggleby. Thailand, 2023.

“When working on a story about wild elephants and the conflict [created] between them and local communities, you need time. The Pulitzer Center's Rainforest Grant allowed me that time, so that I could capture a variety of moments [that] illustrate perfectly the issue presented in the story, such as this one.”

—Luke Duggleby

This message first appeared in the April 19, 2024, edition of the Pulitzer Center's weekly newsletter. Subscribe today.

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Multiple Authors


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Environment and Climate Change

Environment and Climate Change
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Extractive Industries

Extractive Industries