Middlebury

New York Times science and environment reporter Andrew Revkin to discuss media coverage of climate change May 4

April 19, 2006

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. ? Andrew Revkin, an award-winning science and environment reporter at The New York Times, will deliver a lecture titled "The Daily Planet: Why the Media Stumble When Covering Climate Change and Other 21st-century Environmental Issues," on Thursday, May 4, at 4:30 p.m. The lecture, part of Middlebury College's "Meet the Press" series, will take place in Room 220 of McCardell Bicentennial Hall and is free and open to the public.

Andrew Revkin

According to Revkin, news is typically described as an immediate happening that is relevant to the lives or concerns of a media outlet's readers or viewers. Global warming is the antithesis of that, with its impact spread out over time and geography - and laden with uncertainty. Yet many earth scientists and biologists believe global warming will be the most important environmental issue of this century and this disparity is just one of many hurdles, both in and out of the newsroom, that impede effective coverage of the subject.

In his talk, Revkin, author of books and articles on the Amazon, the Arctic, and global warming, will explore the challenges of environmental reporting and offer some solutions. He will discuss his ongoing coverage of peak oil, endangered species and other pressing issues.

Revkin has written about the global environment for two decades and has received more than half a dozen national journalism prizes, including an Investigative Reporters & Editors Award and the inaugural 2003 National Academies Communication Award. For The New York Times, Revkin contributed to "The Big Melt," a 2005 three-part series on the transforming Arctic. He is the author of "The Burning Season," published in 2004 by Island Press, which is an acclaimed investigation of the murder of the Brazilian environmental activist Chico Mendes. His new book, "The North Pole Was Here: Puzzles and Perils at the Top of the World," is due for release this month and describes his 2003 Arctic expedition as the first New York Times reporter ever to file stories from the top of the world. The book includes reporting on the history of Arctic exploration, climate modeling and the future fate of the North Pole.

Revkin has been a reporter at The New York Times since 1995. Previously he was senior editor at Discover magazine, staff writer at the Los Angeles Times, and senior writer at Science Digest. He has written for the New Yorker, Condé Nast Traveler and many other magazines.

Revkin's talk is part of Middlebury College's "Meet the Press" lecture series and is co-sponsored by the Middlebury College English Department and Atwater Commons. "Meet the Press" was established in 2004 by author and Scholar in Residence in English Sue Halpern. According to Halpern, the lectures are presented under the auspices of the Middlebury College Institute on Working Journalism, a program designed to bring newsmakers - reporters, editors, critics, photojournalists, bloggers and editorialists - to the Middlebury campus.

McCardell Bicentennial Hall is located on Bicentennial Way off College Street (Route 125). For more information, contact Sue Halpern at shalpern@middlebury.edu.