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Move Beyond Natural Science To Include Social, Political Research

By ROBERT BRULLE with MIRANDA SPENCER

One core tenet of environmental journalism is the inclusion and explanation of complex physical and natural scientific facts into coverage of environmental issues, and it is expected that reporters invest a considerable effort into understanding the science behind these topics. The journals Scienceand Natureare virtually required background reading, and physical and natural scientists typically serve as the sources for interviews.

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SEJ 2008 Annual Conference: Phenomenal, Memorable, Practical, Not To Be Missed

By BILL KOVARIK AND KEN WARD

The 18th annual SEJ conference in Roanoke, Va., Oct. 15- 19, hosted by Virginia Tech, is shaping up to be one of the most memorable and practical yet.

• Memorable, because of the extraordinary speakers, the beautiful location, and the easy access to fun networking events.

• Practical, for you as a journalist, because of the wide variety of craft sessions in fully equipped computer labs focused on helping you survive and thrive in a changing news business.

 Here are some of the details:

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Budget Knives Don't Cut Creativity, Content In The Blogging World

By BILL DAWSON

 "Doing more with less."

The phrase is now often lampooned as a preposterous cliché, but newspaper executives must have thought at first that it was an artful way to spin the bad news of escalating staff cuts.

Publisher Joe Pepe of The Commercial Appeal, for example, used the words when he announced in late 2005 that the Memphis newspaper would slash its workforce of 774 by 170 employees.

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Journalists As Prophets: From the Climate Change Story to the Great Flood

By MARK NEUZIL

Editor's note: We are fortunate to be able to excerpt a small bit of The Environment and the Press: From Adventure Writing to Advocacy, by Mark Neuzil, that many SEJ members will find interesting, a history of environmental journalism and its roots. We have removed the footnotes from this section, taken from Chapter Two, "Journalism's Prophetic Voice." 

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Magic Number: a Sketchy "Fact" About Polar Bears Keeps Going...And Going... And Going

By PETER DYKSTRA

When Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne announced the listing of the polar bear as a threatened species in May, the political trench warfare over global warming flared up anew. Environmental groups professed surprise that a reluctant Bush Administration acted at all. Global warming deniers said the decision was ludicrous. They cited a polar bear population — a five-fold increase since the 1970s, a doubling since the 1950s, a quadrupling since the 1960s.

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