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

Indian Officials Declare Drought Worst Water Shortage in Mumbai’s History

Twenty million residents of Mumbai, India's largest city, are facing an acute water shortage, the BBC reports this week. Authorities have cut water supplies by 30 percent, due to shortages brought on by sporadic monsoon rainfall. If rain doesn't come soon, agricultural production is likely to suffer and urban residents are worried they will have to buy water from private tankers. If the drought continues, the lakes that feed the city's water supplies will continue to recede.

The Water’s Edge

The Indus Waters Treaty has governed the sharing of a strategic river between India and Pakistan, but will this treaty survive the emerging water crisis?

Kakuma, Kenya: Digging for Water

At the crack of dawn when women and children in other parts of the world wake up to take warm showers and sit down to breakfast, women and children of Kakuma in Turkana Region of Kenya wake up to a different exercise: to walk for miles in the hunt for water. Upon their arrival at the "water source" the real work begins, as they dig the ground for water in the essentially dry gulch that goes by the name of Tarach River.