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Pulitzer Center Update April 30, 2024

Pulitzer Center Will Participate in World Press Freedom Day Events


This year's World Press Freedom Day (WPFD), on May 3, has a main message: protecting journalists investigating the global environmental crisis. 

According to UNESCO, the arm of the United Nations that leads the celebration, journalists who cover environmental crimes and reveal abuses of power that lead to the destruction of forests and oceans have faced the most threats in recent years. 

The Pulitzer Center is dedicated to supporting journalists around the world covering the environment. To highlight our recent work, we will participate in a series of events marking WPFD this week: the "Environmental Journalists on the Frontlines of Democracy" event and the 31st World Press Freedom Day Conference

On Wednesday, May 1, at 10:00am EDT, in a conversation in Washington, D.C., the Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program, in partnership with the Society of Environmental Journalists, will celebrate the important role of environmental journalism. The speakers will highlight the need to protect journalists around the world from surveillance, censorship, oppression, and violence. 

Pulitzer Center CEO and President Jon Sawyer will be the keynote speaker. Meaghan Parker, of the Society of Environmental Journalists, will then lead a panel with Jeje Mohamed, of PEN America; Clayton Weimers, of Reporters Without Borders USA; Amrita Gupta, of the Earth Journalism Network; and independent journalist Sandhya Ravishankar

In addition, the Pulitzer Center’s Rainforest Investigations Network (RIN) will be represented in several panels at the World Press Freedom Day Conference (May 2-5). The event is dedicated to the importance of journalism and freedom of expression amid the current global environmental crisis. 

Media partners and NGOs organized over 40 side events to accompany conference programming. The panels will delve into the growing threats faced by reporters uncovering environmental crimes. Leading investigative journalists, reporters, photojournalists, and press freedom and legal experts will participate in conversations, workshops, screenings, and interactive sessions. 

The Pulitzer Center-organized panel on data-driven investigations in the Amazon rainforest will explore recent investigations such as Amazon Underworld and the encroachment of Indigenous lands in the Brazilian Amazon. The session will be led by RIN Fellows Karla Mendes, from Brazil, reporting for Mongabay, and Bram Ebus, an independent journalist based in Colombia. 

Mendes will also participate in a panel organized by Internews examining obstacles faced by journalists covering environmental issues like extractive industries, pollution, poaching, deforestation, and climate change. 

Finally, Gustavo Faleiros, director of Environmental Investigations at the Pulitzer Center, and Mendes will discuss strategies to promote free and safe coverage of the environmental crisis. 

Read more about the Pulitzer Center’s participation at the World Press Freedom Day Conference and register to livestream Sawyer’s remarks at the Wilson Center here. We hope you’ll celebrate World Press Freedom Day with us.


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Rainforest Investigations Network

Rainforest Investigations Network


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Environment and Climate Change

Environment and Climate Change
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