Through a series of workshops and trainings, the Fellows had opportunities to collaborate with each other, while developing sources and story ideas.
Journalists from the US and developing countries found each others’ perspectives valuable. “It is very important to allow media from undeveloped countries to cover these kinds of events from their own interests and perspectives. I also found it wonderful to show journalists of developed countries our point of view of the negotiations and projects like REDD,” said Pablo Fonesca, a journalist from Costa Rica.
The Fellows plan to continue their collaborations, formally and informally. Bruce Gellerman, the host of Public Radio International’s Living on Earth, and an EJN Fellow, offered an internship to CCMP Fellow Ugochi Anyaka, host of a climate change radio program called ‘Green Angle’ in Abuja, Nigeria. Freelance photographer Mark Malijan produced a slide show with LA Times reporter Margot Roosevelt.
During the conference, all Fellows participated in a field trips and workshops designed to build reporting skills and introduce new angles to climate reporting. The field trips took the Fellows deep into the Yucatan where they visited local Mayan villages that are operating their own community forestry projects which are embarking on new REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) activities aimed at helping prevent climate change. Forestry was a major focus of the summit, and the field trips were organized with the help of the Consejo Civil Mexicano para la Silvicultura Sostenible.
New York Times Dot Earth blogger Andrew Revkin spoke to the Fellows and other journalists covering the summit at a conference organized by EJN and CCMP on December 2. Revkin offered tips for covering the negotiations and using social media tools. Along with other Fellows from the US and developing countries, he also participated on a panel responding to the recent Oxford study which found climate science was under-reported in coverage of the 2009 Copenhagen negotiations.