Issue

Environment and Climate Change

Earth's average temperature has risen approximately one degree Fahrenheit in the last 50 years. By the end of this century, it will be several degrees higher, according to the latest climate research.

But global warming is doing more than simply making things a little warmer. It's changing rainfall, causing heat waves, and making sea level rise, all of which create human suffering.

Environment and Climate Change brings together reporting from Pulitzer Center grantees on the abilities of communities in diverse regions to bounce back and adapt to the impacts of climate change: One highlight includes in-depth reporting by Nathaniel Rich on the response to global warming during the 1979-1989 decade—an article that takes up the entire issue of The New York Times Magazine. Our journalists investigate climate change in the Arctic—the effects on indigenous communities, the destruction of the fragile natural environment, and the conflict between humans and polar bears. One interactive, award-winning multimedia project, "Sea Change," looks at ocean acidification, its impact on fishing, people's livelihoods, and food security. The documentary "Easy Like Water" features a solar-powered school boat in Bangladesh, where flooding may create 20 million "climate refugees" by mid-century.

Other stories covered here range from the future of the residents of Kiribati, a low-lying island nation in the Pacific, to the biological diversity of the rainforest in Peru, and the psychological effects of climate change on the inhabitants of Australia and Fiji. How does the melting Arctic ice cap affect our lives? How do overfishing and exploitation of mineral resources beneath the ocean’s surface jeopardize food sources need to sustain the planet’s ever-expanding population?

As part of the Pulitzer Center's long-term support for climate change reporting, the Rainforest Journalism Fund was established to provide capacity for local journalists operating in the rainforest regions of Latin America, Africa, and Asia, as well as international journalists reporting from those regions. The Fund represents a major investment in global environmental and climate reporting, with plans to support nearly 200 original reporting projects along with annual regional conferences designed to raise the level of reporting on global rainforest issues such as deforestation and climate change.

 

Environment and Climate Change

The Wampis: First Indigenous Autonomous Government in Peru Fights Back Against Deforestation (Spanish)

The Wampis Nation is made up of thousands of people whose ancestors have lived in the Amazon rainforest in the north of Peru for centuries. Increasing raids from loggers, miners, and those searching for fossil fuels, in addition to political changes that favor industrial exploitation of natural resources, have left the Wampis more and more worried about the future of their home.

Memories from Qemmamine

Hiking along the Lebanon Mountain Trail, Catherine Cartier stopped for one night in Qemmamine, where she listened to her hosts as they remembered their village's past.

The Sateré-Mawé Retake Ancestral Land Threatened by Loggers and Land Thieves (Portuguese)

In a region historically occupied by the Sateré-Mawé people, the Indians are demanding that the National Indigenous Agency (Funai) correct the boundaries of the Indigenous Andirá-Marau land. A Mongabay reporting team, supported by the Rainforest Journalism Fund and the Pulitzer Center, accompanied their trip to regions which will become future villages.

Guna Yala Sinking

The sea level rise clock ticks loudly for those who call the Guna Yala islands of Panama home. Will a pending migration to the mainland serve as a model of progressive climate change adaptation?

Underwater Mining in the Pacific Ocean

An exploration into the emerging industry of underwater mining leads to more questions than answers. With time running out before this practice begins, are we acting irresponsibly?

Laboratory Earth

An unintended planet-wide experiment is underway–leading to warming temperatures and an acidifying ocean.

Mist and Mystery: Borneo's Vanishing Landscape

Borneo's ecological devastation involves logging, mining, palm oil cultivation, habitat loss, and climate change. This project examines these challenges through the eyes of Borneo’s indigenous people.