NPF, NPCJI award ,000 to four grantees for environmental justice journalism projects
NPF, NPCJI award ,000 to four grantees for environmental justice journalism projects

WASHINGTON, July 3, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The National Press Foundation (NPF) and the National Press Club Journalism Institute (NPCJI) have jointly awarded $45,000 to fund four reporting projects on environmental justice. This is the third year that the two leading journalism organizations have partnered to fund investigative environmental justice journalism.

Each of the following grantees will receive $11,250 to fund their project:

Jena Brooker, BridgeDetroit. Brooker’s project will explore the impacts of Michigan’s Air Pollution Control Exemption, which exempts some of the state’s worst violators of air and water quality laws from sales, use, and property taxes. Brooker seeks to identify how much this law has cost Detroit in lost taxes which would have otherwise been used to fund city services and the impact of excess emissions from the exempted facilities in question. After publication, she will create a physical fact sheet to distribute to Detroit residents, of which 300,000 lack broadband internet access.

Rob Chaney, Missoulian. Chaney’s project will examine the differences among Indigenous and other communities in transitioning from coal to renewable energy sources, with a focus on three neighboring communities: the Northern Cheyenne Reservation, Crow Nation, and the town of Colstrip. It will explore the different ways mainstream and Indigenous cultures respond to climate change and will compare the energy-economy transition plan of Colstrip to the proposals offered on the reservations. In addition to appearing in the Missoulian, the published work will be made available to Indian Country Today and its affiliates and Lee Enterprises outlets across the U.S.

Celeste Gracia and Aaron Sánchez Guerra, North Carolina Public Radio – WUNC. This three-part audio and digital project will focus on labor conditions for outdoor workers in North Carolina as climate change exposes them to higher temperatures. Gracia and Sánchez Guerra will explore the state’s current and historical political climate as it relates to labor and recent calls by labor advocates for a statewide heat standard. Among those affected are immigrant farm workers, construction workers and airport workers.

Lue Palmer, Freelance. Palmer will investigate the impact of noise pollution on the health of a community in Independence, Louisiana, where residents attribute a spate of recent deaths to relentless late-night noise from sixteen-wheel trucks travelling to and from a nearby dump and gravel pit, seven nights a week. Palmer plans to produce – in both print and longform audio – an investigation into the final months of the people who died and document what nights are like in the mostly Black homes that line the road to the gravel pit.

“Environmental racism is a critical issue that deserves the attention of these thoughtful and hardworking journalists,” said Anne Godlasky, President of the National Press Foundation. “We’re thrilled at the diversity of topics and communities covered in these projects. Each is a story that needs to be told and we’re grateful to support this work alongside NPCJI.”

“Each of these projects will investigate and bring context to serious issues impacting vulnerable communities,” said Beth Francesco, executive director of the National Press Club Journalism Institute. “We are proud to support this work and hope these stories will inspire others to closely examine environmental justice issues in their own backyards.”

The Kozik Grants are funded by a 1991 gift from the late Dr. Franklin Kozik in honor of his deceased son Robert Kozik. The four grantees were selected by judges Antonia JuhaszYanick Rice Lamb, Charles Self and Harriet Washington. This is the third round of grants awarded since 2021.

See more about the 2022 Kozik grant recipients’ projects and the 2021 Kozik grant recipients’ projects.

About The National Press Foundation
The National Press Foundation is a nonprofit whose mission is to “make good journalists better.” We educate journalists on the complex issues of the day and train them to use the latest reporting tools and techniques. The foundation recognizes and encourages excellence in journalism through its awards and fellowships.

About the National Press Club Journalism Institute
The National Press Club Journalism Institute promotes an engaged global citizenry through an independent and free press, and equips journalists with skills and standards to inform the public in ways that inspire a more representative democracy. As the non-profit affiliate of the National Press Club, the Institute powers journalism in the public interest.

Press contact: Beth Francesco, [email protected]

SOURCE National Press Club Journalism Institute

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