Policy

EPA Proposes Revisions to FOIA Rule. They Are Not Enough

When the Trump-era Environmental Protection Agency changed regulations governing freedom of information requests, journalists worried they were making it easier for political appointees to interfere with disclosures. Now the Biden administration is proposing a rules revision. But, as the latest WatchDog Opinion argues, it’s missing an opportunity to rid the regime of those critical flaws.

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Cascadia Bioregion Rife With Energy, Environment Troubles To Report in 2023

Iconic critters like salmon, orca and wolves. Climate controversies like natural gas greenwashing and carbon auctions. And wildfire fallout like “smoke-a-geddon.” These are just some of the wide array of stories worth covering as environmental journalists scan Cascadia, the huge area encompassing Washington, Oregon and Idaho, and stretching from Alaska to Utah. This special TipSheet, part of our 2023 Journalists’ Guide to Energy & Environment, outlines top issues in the region, offering insights, resources and story angles.

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February 7, 2023 to April 18, 2023

UT Energy Symposium (Weekly)

The University of Texas at Austin's weekly guest lecture series is free and open to the public, on Tuesdays, 1:30-2:45 p.m. ET, via Zoom or YouTube. Ongoing themes include climate change policy, innovation and diffusion of energy technologies, low-carbon technologies and behavioral aspects of energy consumption.

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Whither the Permitting Reform Bill in 2023?

The complex legal obstacles that face U.S. energy projects prompted political machinations over permitting reform in the last Congress and likely will again in the new one. The latest Backgrounder explores how the energy permitting system works (or doesn’t), why Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin may really be pushing for its reform and the reason some environmentalists concede reform may have green benefits.

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Winning Over Editors and Others with Award Winners’ Multimedia Nuggets

If you’re looking to engage key constituencies for your journalism — whether editors, sources, students or people who have been marginalized — a new set of short videos from award-winning journalists (like KESQ's Angela Chen, at left) can serve as a helpful resource. Inside Story has a roadmap of how to make smart use of these video nuggets to, for instance, convince newsroom powerbrokers to give you more time and support for ambitious stories.

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Water-Sharing in the West: An Urgent and Complicated Environmental Story

Water has always been a precious commodity in the western states. Now, with rapid population growth and a drying climate, the way this resource is shared and distributed is becoming more contentious across the region. Freelance journalist Jennifer Oldham talks about the tensions between supply and demand and how to drill down into water rights laws and policies.

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Corporations and Climate Change Toolbox

Corporations may be taking steps to address climate change, but are they moving big enough and fast enough? As part of a special initiative from the Society of Environmental Journalists, we offer a resource toolbox on how to cover business-based climate solutions. Plus, insights from a related tipsheet.

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Measuring the Impact of Corporate Commitments

Corporations may be taking steps to address climate change, but are they moving big enough and fast enough? As part of a special initiative from the Society of Environmental Journalists, we offer a tipsheet from journalist Megan Myscofski on how to cover business-based climate solutions. Get additional resources and watch this video from an earlier webinar. And see the full Covering Climate Solutions special report.

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EPA Texts Disappear, Suspicions of Misdeeds Do Not

A scandal at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over regulatory capture of some toxic chemical officials has surfaced another serious issue — the EPA says it can’t provide related phone text messages. But it’s required to do so by law. And for environmental journalists, access to such records is key to holding the agency to account, argues WatchDog Opinion.

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Bringing the Climate Crisis Story Home in 2023

Even as national governments scramble to address climate change, including with a new global summit planned for next fall, environmental journalists may find that action (or inaction) by state and local governments will yield an abundance of climate stories in the year ahead. The latest TipSheet offers numerous questions to ask, story ideas and resources to mine for local climate reporting.

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