From time to time, an industry or subject inspires us to create a best-of list. These are sites that produce out-of-this-world coverage in a crowded arena. In case you’ve missed some of these, you can find them here. If you think your site should be considered, give us a holler and tell us why.
Two years ago, we started something.
We asked award-winning TV reporter Jeff Burnside to break down environmental journalism. He’s the past president of the Society of Environmental Journalists, so he’s an expert in this arena. What came of that conversation turned out to be the most popular post in the history of the Beyond Bylines blog — our 11 favorite news sites for out-of-this-world environmental coverage.
The following year, in the golden age of climate denial, we came up with another list: 11 more top environmental news sites to watch. And, last summer, while the White House was embroiled in drama around the Paris climate agreement, we sat down and drew up an update on our environmental coverage.
Now, as Earth Day approaches, we’ve got even more.
Earthsight is a non-profit organization that harnesses the power of investigative reporting to bring attention to pressing environmental issues. “We aim to get to the core of an issue, using a range of investigative research methods to obtain first-hand, documented evidence of crimes against both people and the planet,” it says, on the site.
Earthsight has tackled a wide range of issues — from electronic waste smuggling and conflict timber to sweatshops and the ivory trade. The team’s research and reporting has led to changes in the policies by governments, corporations, and financial institutions.
Story to read right now: The Coming Storm
You know Bloomberg. It’s a titan of financial and business journalism. While its journalists have always covered environmental news, Bloomberg last year renewed its commitment to the beat with the launch of the Climate Changed site.
According to HuffPost, the site is “a hub for coverage of how rising global temperatures are changing the planet and moving financial markets.” It collects stories on climate change from Bloomberg reporters at more than 150 bureaus around the world and puts them neatly in one location.
(Note: This beat was relaunched in 2020 as Bloomberg Green.)
Stories to read right now: How a Melting Arctic Changes Everything (series) and Want to Use the Earth to Heat Your Home? Investors Try to Help
Earther is a destination for news and analysis about our ever-changing planet, the people who live on it, and what the future holds. The site is part of the Gizmodo Media Group, which owns The Onion, The Root, and Jalopnik — among others.
“We love geeking out over the weather, sharing the latest conservation success stories, and reminding you that climate change is very real,” it says on the Earther site.
Stories to read right now: Antarctica’s Ice Is Becoming Unhinged and This Rusty Old Shipyard Might Be the Greenest Place in Europe
The Texas Tribune is a nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues. It launched in 2009, and is dedicated to bringing greater transparency and accountability to public policy.
Its environment section sheds light on a range of problems impacting the state. Stories cover everything from the government’s response to Hurricane Harvey to illegal water pollution and the environmental impact of building a border wall.
Stories to read right now: Large portions of West Texas sinking at alarming rate, new report finds and Audit: Company behind Texas “clean coal” project used federal funds for liquor, limousines and lobbying
According to Society of Environmental Journalists, The Guardian does more environmental coverage than almost any newspaper on the planet. “They send reporters to international climate events even when most other newspapers stay home,” writes SEJ.
The site is broken down into news categories on climate change, wildlife, energy, and pollution. It also features more niche sections, like investigating the threats facing America’s public lands and the Keystone XL pipeline. But, as SEJ said, “Being Brits, they do not suck up to the U.S. government” in any news coverage.
The Gecko Project is an investigative journalism initiative established by Earthsight, in collaboration with environmental news site Mongabay. It aims to to shine a light on the corruption driving land grabs and the destruction of tropical rainforests.
Topics include climate change, the collapse of biodiversity, food security, and the rights of indigenous peoples and other rural communities. This sort of reporting might, in the past, have been “locked up in a PDF report [where it] wouldn’t reach a broader audience,” said Tom Johnson, the head of research at Earthsight, in a Nieman Lab article on the project.
Stories to read right now: The making of a palm oil fiefdom and The ‘provocateur’ who was jailed over a dispute with a palm oil firm
Climate Feedback is a global network of scientists who assess the credibility of influential climate change media coverage.
Its first mission essentially is to fact-check, and it’s pretty fascinating.
The group aims to help folks — “from the general public to influential decision-makers—distinguish inaccurate climate change narratives from scientifically sound and trustworthy information in the media.”
Stories to read right now: Washington Post accurately covers permafrost study, albeit under a somewhat sensational headline and New satellite measurements show sea level rise is accelerating, as CNN accurately reports
The New Food Economy is an award-winning non-profit news site that uses independent, deep, and unbiased reporting to investigate the forces shaping how and what we eat. We recently featured the site in our five questions series.
In its environment section, NFE journalists dish on the impacts of the food industry on the planet. Here you’ll learn about everything from improperly disposed food waste to how cow poop could power an emissions-free car of the future.
Stories to read right now: Oysters could clean up the New York harbor. But regulators worry people will eat them and As the organic movement fractures, farmers and food companies are redefining the standard they built
InsideClimate News is an independent, not-for-profit news agency that covers clean energy, carbon energy, nuclear energy, and environmental science. It also takes a closer look at the “territory in between where law, policy and public opinion are shaped.”
“We are staffed by professional journalists, many of whom bring decades of experience from leading media organizations in the nation, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, ProPublica, Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg News and Frontline,” the site says. “We have earned national recognition for our work and many of the most prestigious awards in journalism, including the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting.”
Thomson Reuters’s news coverage is well known.
Its global editorial team features 46 journalists and 150 freelancers, covering the world’s “under-reported stories at the heart of aid, development, women’s rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change.”
The climate section of the site covers a host of topics, ranging from farming and Amazon forest protection to solar power and food waste. There’s something for everyone here.
Earthfix is “news fixed on the environment.”
EarthFix itself is a public media partnership of several news organizations, including Oregon Public Broadcasting, Idaho Public Television, KCTS9 Seattle, KUOW Puget Sound Public Radio, Northwest Public Radio and Television, Jefferson Public Radio, KLCC, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Stories to read right now: Conservation Groups Call For a Ban on Trapping Rare Martens and Washington, Oregon Sue EPA Head Over Alleged Clean Air Act Violations
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Authors Christine Cube and Anna Jasinski work in audience relations at PR Newswire. You can catch them sharing journalism and blogging news on @BeyondBylines, or you can follow them on their personal handles at @cpcube and @annamjasinski.