Introducing Our New ‘Food & Water’ Climate Reporting Guide

Check out the guide for story ideas, coverage tips and more.

Agricultural laborers pick lemons inside the orchards of Samag Services Inc. in the US. (Photo by Brent Stirton via Getty Images.)

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As we discussed in last week’s ‘Climate Beat’ newsletter, CCNow’s next joint coverage week will focus on the climate connections with food and water. The week kicks off Monday, June 27, with a topic that’s sure to engage audiences; after all, we all need to eat and drink. Sadly, the worsening global food crisis — driven by Russia’s war on Ukraine, rising food prices, and climate-fueled extreme weather — adds urgency to the theme.

To help get journalists and newsrooms up to speed, last week’s newsletter highlighted some exemplary coverage and background reading. This week, we’re following up with our new food, water, and climate reporting guide, which contains story ideas, recommended sources, coverage tips, and more. We will continue to update this guide. We invite our fellow journalists to let us know what questions you’d like to see addressed, as well as any resources and story angles you’d like to share. Check it out here.

When generating story ideas it’s helpful to remember that food, water, and climate are relevant for just about every media outlet, everywhere. And while there are plenty of problems to cover, there are lots of solutions as well.

In particular, we recommend the solutions-oriented reporting found in the book Regeneration: Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation, by Paul Hawken. Hawken edited the best-seller Drawdown, which in 2017 summarized peer-reviewed studies to identify the 100 most effective climate solutions; ending food waste and shifting to more plant-based diets ranked third and fourth. Regeneration contains scores of real-world accounts of practical, far-reaching alternative ways to grow food, conserve water, and even “create” rainfall.

CCNow has arranged free access to Regeneration’s “Land” and “Food” chapters, which are studded with story ideas, solely for journalists and newsrooms that are CCNow partners. Thank you to Paul Hawken and the book’s publisher, Penguin Random House for sharing. You can find access information in our food and water Slack channel. Or email us at and we’ll send you the password.

More food for thought (sorry!) comes from Guardian columnist George Monbiot’s provocative new op-ed warning of a potential collapse of the global food system. (You might remember Monbiot’s and activist Greta Thunberg’s related video on natural climate solutions.) In the same way that reckless profiteering by the world’s banks triggered a collapse of the financial system in 2008, argues Monbiot, so does today’s highly monopolized corporate control of food production and distribution threaten to drive millions more people into hunger and beyond. “Just four corporations control 90 percent of the global grain trade,” he writes, even as grain “production is now highly concentrated in a handful of nations, including Russia and Ukraine.”

Monbiot reminds us that, as with so many parts of the climate crisis, the challenge of feeding humanity on an overheating planet is not only to choose the right technologies and policies; it is also to overcome the incumbent industries and other special interests that seek to thwart such solutions.

From us

“Carbon Bomb” recording. Today CCNow held a Twitter space co-hosted by the Guardian. We discussed the Guardian’s expose of “carbon bomb” oil and gas projects that would kill any chance of keeping the 1.5C temperature target alive, and how journalists everywhere can advance the story. We were joined by Damian Carrington, Mark Hertsgaard, Matthew Taylor, and Amy Westervelt. Listen to the recording.

Bienvenida. CCNow’s website is now available in 16 additional languages via Google translate. Check out the top right hand corner of our website here to see them.

Noteworthy stories

“A Persistent Drag.” The Bank of England has warned that financial institutions that don’t intelligently manage climate risks will face “a persistent drag on profitability.” The bank warned of loss rates on annual profits of 10 to 15% following stress tests of how British banks will cope with a shift to a net-zero carbon economy. By Huw Jones and Andy Bruce for Reuters…

30 Times More Likely. The heatwave scorching India and Pakistan was made 30 times more likely by climate change, according to a new study by the World Weather Attribution group. The heat has caused widespread suffering, especially for those who work outside, and slashed crop yields, leading Indian prime minister Narendra Modi to retract his earlier offer to boost wheat exports to offset global shortages. By Damian Carrington for the Guardian…

Calling Out B.S. A safety consultant for Shell Oil has severed her longtime relationship with the oil giant, charging that the company knows that oil and gas causes “extreme harms to our climate” but continues expanding production anyway. “Whatever they say, Shell is simply not winding down on fossil fuels,” Caroline Dennett said. By Frank Jordans for AP News…

Climate election. Public concerns about climate change played a major role in ousting Australian prime minister Scott Morrison in elections last week. Most voters wanted “much more” action on climate change, according to a national opinion survey, whereas Morrison championed Australia’s coal industry, despite horrific wildfires that ravaged the country in 2019. By Richard Glover for The Washington Post…

Necessary Cuts. A new study finds that cutting methane and other “short lived climate pollutants” — including by plugging leaks from oil and gas operations — is an essential climate solution. Cutting methane can buy us time for the larger task of halting carbon emissions. By Fiona Harvey for the Guardian… Check out the Texas-take on this story, which serves as a helpful explainer on the methane problem, with WFAA’s David Schechter here.

Commencement Address. UN Secretary-General António Guterres delivered powerful remarks to the graduates of Seton Hall University, urging them to not “work for the climate wreckers” and encouraging them to take lifepaths that move toward a renewable future. Rachel Koning Beals for Marketwatch…


The following stories deserve special consideration for republication by CCNow partners:

For partner outlets: To submit stories for sharing, please use this form. As always, instructions for republishing and the full list of stories available for republication can be found in our Sharing Library.

Odds & Ends

Jobs. The Wall Street Journal is looking to launch a climate newsletter and is in need of an editor. The Environment Reporting Collective is looking for an operations manager in Jakarta and a community manager remote from Asia. Details about applying here. Sitka Conservation Society is hiring a storytelling and engagement specialist. Inside Climate News is looking for a Midwest climate and justice reporter and a Texas based reporter.

If you have any feedback on this newsletter, or know of information that should be included here, shoot us a note at