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

Malawi's Toxic Kitchens

The smoke of cooking fires makes Malawi’s women and children sick, but not everyone can afford an improved cook stove.

India: Toiling for a Toilet

A sanitation scheme has deepened rural indebtedness and perpetuated migratory labor. Yardain Amron reports on the race to make every open village defecation-free by 2019.

Pollution in China

Air pollution in Beijing is one result of the breakneck economic growth that has lifted hundreds of millions of China’s people out of poverty.

"China's Growing Sands" Featured on duckrabbit's Blog

Sean Gallagher won Magnum photographer David Alan Harvey's first Emerging Photographer Fund in 2008, and used the prize to travel to China to photograph the devastating effects of desertification on the most populous country on earth. Since then he has also received grant money to continue his work from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting. Recently, he even managed to slip into North Korea, disguised as a tourist.

I've been following Sean's progress through his many blogs – his own, one on Resolve and one for the Pulitzer Centre.

People Around the World Share Their Water Stories

Nine-year-old Ely Kleinsmith knows that water and sanitation are issues that affect us all -- and that it's up to each of us to insure that everyone in the world has access to these resources that too many of us take for granted. What Ely has done, in his hometown of Solon, Iowa, is to found a Water Club aimed at raising awareness, and attract funding, for water-related programs in Haiti.

Pulitzer Films Win Awards at Media That Matters Festival

Two Pulitzer Center-supported films won honors at the 9th Annual Media That Matters Film Festival June 3. Jennifer Redfearn's "The Next Wave," a short version of "Sun Come Up," her film on the effects of climate change on the native inhabitants of the Carteret Islands, won the Jury Award. Gabrielle Weiss' "La Hoja," on coca leaf farmers and the coca industry in Bolivia, won the Unspoken Truth Award. Congratulations, Jennifer and Gabrielle!