SEJournal Online is the digital news magazine of the Society of Environmental Journalists. Learn more about SEJournal Online, including submission, subscription and advertising information.
Climate Solutions: Corporations and Climate Change Toolbox
As corporations make major commitments to reducing climate emissions, journalists will need to be ready to investigate whether these efforts are contributing to a sustainable future, or simply greenwashing the same old dirty business.
Learn more with the list of resources below, part of an ongoing Society of Environmental Journalists publishing project focused on covering climate solutions. And read a corporate climate solutions reporting tipsheet. Plus, watch the recording of an SEJ webinar, Covering Climate Solutions: Better Business – Covering Corporate Climate Solutions, featuring expert panelists with advice on how to cover the role of the business sector in solving the climate challenge.
Reporting and Regulation
InfluenceMap’s Oil/Gas Sector Climate Lobbying Update
Think tank InfluenceMap details lobbying efforts by the fossil fuel industry in this 2022 updated report, which is helpful in assessing a fuller picture of a company’s climate impact.
Think tank Capital Research Center offers this database of organizations, foundations and donors that spend money on public policy issues, which can also help track down where companies and their leaders are putting their support.
A research group dataset to help track political donations by individuals and industries.
Carrots & Sticks
A guide to both mandatory and voluntary environmental impact reporting instruments by country, including governmental, industry-wide and other guidelines.
Some U.S. states, like California, and Canadian provinces, like British Columbia, have a database to see what companies are lobbying on a local level.
If you’re interested in following where Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funds go, start with announcements from the federal government and the agencies distributing it. You can find many of those announcements on this U.S. Chamber of Commerce page and in press releases from agencies like the United States Departments of Agriculture and Transportation.
Once you have those, identify what programs and funds your state or other local government entities are eligible for, and follow up with the relevant departments or organizations that would apply for and manage this money. I’ve found many great sources in local economic development offices.
As it rolls out, you can also check on individual grants with USASpending.gov’s database.
There are also several organizations that provide experts, research and toolkits on local government spending, like the National Association of Counties, the National League of Cities, the National Association of State Budget Officers and the Brookings Institution.
The ESG Initiative at the Wharton School
This institute at the University of Pennsylvania provides research and experts on ESG topics and development.
Nasdaq ESG Data Hub
Nasdaq has a collection of datasets that provide ESG metrics on various categories of companies.
World Bank ESG Data Portal
This World Bank tool sorts ESG-related data across countries and provides articles that touch on both environmental and financial topics.
Public Plans Data
This database from Boston College, the MissionSquare Research Institute, the National Association of State Retirement Administrators and the Government Finance Officers Association can help you navigate state pension funds and track down investment managers.
You can also look up your state’s investment council for information it’s made public and possible sources.
Carbon Offsets and Net-Zero Targets
Carbon Market Watch
This nonprofit with funding from the EU provides explainers, experts and research on net-zero and zero-carbon efforts from companies.
SCS Global Services
This company serves as a third-party verifier for companies interested in using carbon offsets.
Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero
This organization provides guidance to financial institutions on reaching net-zero goals and has research, experts and resources to that end.;
These resources were compiled for this special report by Megan Myscofski, environmental reporter at the Albuquerque Journal. Myscofski previously worked as a business and economics reporter at Arizona Public Media in Tucson, where she reported, produced and hosted a podcast on the economic side of water issues called Tapped. She also formerly worked at Montana Public Radio as a reporter and Morning Edition host, and received a master's degree from the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY. Her work has run on NPR, Marketplace and KUNC, among other outlets.