“Conservation Effectiveness” series wins award
Apr04

“Conservation Effectiveness” series wins award

  A feature on how conservation NGOs use evidence to guide their decisions, by staff writer Shreya Dasgupta, is the winner in the environment category of the 2018 Science Seeker Awards. Scientists have long urged conservation NGOs to make decisions based on scientific evidence, Shreya writes in the piece. However, big conservation NGOs run into many problems in trying to use the available science. So she sets out to explain what is known about the topic by looking at the published evidence: “Overall, there has been a rise in peer-reviewed studies looking into the effectiveness of conservation strategies. But NGOs don’t seem to be using them,” she writes in the piece. Read on for her full analysis of why this is and what can be done, here, Experience or evidence: How do big conservation NGOs make decisions? The feature was part 4 of “Conservation Effectiveness,” Mongabay’s multi-part series investigating the effectiveness of some of the most popular strategies to conserve tropical forests around the world. The series was the result of a collaboration between Mongabay staff reporters Shreya Dasgupta and Mike Gaworecki, their editor Rebecca Kessler, and a team of conservation scientists led by tropical forest ecologist Zuzana Burivalova of Princeton University. Wonderfully interactive infographics were created for most features in the series by GreenInfo Network, whose team was led by Tom Allnutt. Banner image: Crested black macaque. Photo by Rhett A. Butler /...

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Mongabay investigation makes “Best Nonprofit Journalism of 2017” list
Dec26

Mongabay investigation makes “Best Nonprofit Journalism of 2017” list

Congratulations to the reporting team of Sue Branford, Maurício Torres, and Thais Borges: the third feature in their multi-part investigation from the Tapajós River Basin in the heart of the Brazilian Amazon carried out in cooperation with The Intercept-Brasil was selected by the Institute for Nonprofit News for their ‘Best Nonprofit Journalism of 2017‘ list. The feature, “Day of Terror,” revealed how a raid by federal police on an indigenous Munduruku village resulted in one death and multiple injuries, and prompted a prosecutor to open a new investigation and recommend the award of $2.9 million (US) in compensation to the village. Read the feature and watch the harrowing video here. Banner image: Adenilson Krixi Mundurku’s family watches in solemn grief as Mongabay journalists are told how he was killed by Brazil’s Federal Police. Photo by Thais...

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Overcoming the fake news deluge: an opportunity to support Mongabay
Dec16

Overcoming the fake news deluge: an opportunity to support Mongabay

The “spirit of giving” has arrived at Mongabay’s doorstep this holiday season! With gratitude Mongabay is pleased to announce that another donor has offered $10,000 for an end-of-year matching gift opportunity. All donations will be matched one to one until we reach our $10,000 goal – this offer ends the first week of January. By supporting Mongabay, one can reassert the importance of real journalism and analysis as a methodology for tackling pressing environmental issues. Rhett Butler, founder and CEO of Mongabay, believes the organization’s accurate reporting results partly from its business model. “Because Mongabay is not for profit, we can focus on presenting the facts without bias or sensationalizing. We don’t need click bait to drive traffic for ad revenue. Our readers demand fact-based journalism, and they are the source of our income.” Over the years, Mongabay has garnered the respect of conservationists, policy makers, scientists and everyday citizens alike because of its reliable reporting. The rise and apparent ramifications of “fake news”, targeted misinformation campaigns, and an incoming US administration that is hostile to the media all threaten journalism as a primary mechanism that informs society. “It’s an alarming development”, says Dave Martin, director of partnerships for Mongabay. “It demonstrates that now, more than ever, is the time to support accuracy in reporting, science, and the predominance of factual information. I’m hoping that people who care about these issues really double down on supporting great organizations in order to counter balance such emerging threats”. Mongabay has years of experience offering high-quality reporting, and aims to continue to be a go-to resource for reliable conservation news and analysis. Take advantage of this opportunity by donating here Please contact Dave Martin (dave [at] mongabay.org) for all...

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Our achievements in 2015
Dec29

Our achievements in 2015

2015 was a monumental year for Mongabay in terms of the organization’s growth, reach, and impact. Here are some brief highlights from 2015: MONGABAY Mongabay has been completely redesigned — you can see the new site at mongabay.com. Our full-time global team has grown from 4 to 11 since the beginning of the year, including an editor for our Spanish-language initiative – Mongabay Latin-America – which will formally launch in early 2016. By the end of next year, we hope to have daily Spanish news reporting in a dozen countries in Central and South America. Our global network of journalists has grown from 12 at this time last year to more than 70. Our translator network involves more than 100 people. We've launched several new reporting initiatives, including palm oil, endangered environmentalists, Indonesian community forests, Latin American wildlife trafficking, Indonesian haze beat, and "almost famous", a series of little-known charismatic species. Traffic to Mongabay’s environmental content amounted to 10.5 million unique visitors, 14.5 million visits, and 24 million pageviews in 2015. The reach of this content was extended via social media and third party sites that republished our stories. Dozens of stories produced under our reporting program have been published by third party outlets including The New York Times, ScientificAmerican, TakePart, Deutsche Welle, and The Guardian, among others. We've launched wildtech.mongabay.com, a new initiative that looks at how technology can be better leveraged to support conservation, including monitoring, law enforcement, and anti-poaching. We produced nearly 1,300 stories in English, almost 300 in Spanish, over 80 in both Portuguese and French, more than 40 in Italian, Chinese, and German; and more than 25 in Japanese. Tropical Conservation Science published more than 70 peer-reviewed papers and saw its impact factor rise to 1.329 from 1.092. Our kids section on rainforests averaged 150,000 visits a month. We launched early childhood e-readers for iPads and established a news section for kids. Mongabay reporting sparked an investigation into a cacao plantation in Peru, a crackdown on poaching in Sumatra’s Leuser Ecosystem by the Ministry of Forestry and Environment, raids against illegal loggers operating in South Sumatra’s Sembilang National Park, and interest from a major studio in producing a documentary series on “endangered environmentalists.” Mongabay stories also catalyzed broader reporting by mainstream media outlets. Nearly 18,000 new staff photos were added to the site. MONGABAY-INDONESIA Mongabay-Indonesia’s team grew from five to six full-time staff, while our contributor network across nearly three dozen cities and towns expanded to 40. Readership grew over 300 percent to 7.5 million pageviews and 3.8 million unique visitors. Top ministers publicly referenced Mongabay-Indonesia on several occasions. A Mongabay-Indonesia story covering of...

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Success stories: supporting mainstream media coverage of environmental concerns
Oct04

Success stories: supporting mainstream media coverage of environmental concerns

Quality journalism fuels dialogue between government, NGOs, communities, and lobbying groups as well as concerned citizens in an effort to find solutions to the environmental challenges we face now and in the years ahead. The process of educating these groups about the importance of conserving natural resources plays a major role in promoting advocacy and facilitating cooperation. However, the nuanced field of long-form environmental journalism is on the decline. In April 2013 a story in the Columbia Journalism Review described a “meltdown” in long-form reporting at major U.S. newspapers. The piece cited an 86 percent drop at the Los Angeles Times, a 50 percent decline at the Washington Post, a 35 percent dip at the Wall Street Journal, and a 25 percent fall at the New York Times. This deterioration has been accompanied by waning interest in environmental issues in the United States as measured by Google Trends, including a gradual but steady decline in search traffic for water management-and pollution-related keywords. The combination is especially troubling for environmental journalism, which requires nuanced reporting. Boiling down an inevitably complex environmental story to a simple black-and-white issue risks introducing inaccuracies that provide fuel for environmental naysayers and critics. Mongabay.org was founded, in part, to facilitate detailed reporting on key issues affecting the environment and the communities that depend on it. Our Special Reporting Initiatives (SRI) and Mongabay Reporting Network (MRN) programs enable professional journalists to conduct in-depth reporting on a specific issue over a three-month period. Some of the resulting articles are published on Mongabay under a Creative Commons license that allows for, and encourages, re-publishing elsewhere. Others are published in external media outlets, reaching as wide an audience as possible. Since the launch of these programs, stories supported by Mongabay have been published in dozens of publications, include Environmental Health Perspectives, The New York Times, The Guardian, Yale e360, Scientific American, BBC, SmartPlanet, Ensia, Deutsche Welle, AnimalPlanet, Slate, Tempo Magazine, Publica, TakePart, , The Jakarta Post, and Lucky Peach, among others. Additionally Mongabay stories have been disseminated via our syndication partners, including Yahoo News, The Guardian, BusinessInsider, Eco-Business, The Epoch Times, and Environmental News Network. Help us do more...

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Success stories: exposing Borneo’s energy boondoggle
Oct04

Success stories: exposing Borneo’s energy boondoggle

In 2009, Cynthia Ong, the Founder and Executive Director of LEAP, a Malaysian NGO, contacted Mongabay about a plan to build a coal plant in Sabah, on the tip of Malaysian Borneo. Ong had just started to mobilize local opposition to the plant, which put rainforests and mangroves, the livelihoods of local farmers and fishermen, and the coral reefs of the Coral Triangle at risk. Through a series of in-depth articles, Mongabay raised the international profile of the issue, attracting the attention of Daniel Kammen, who was then a renewable energy expert at the World Bank and a professor at UC Berkeley. Kammen and his team went on to develop a comprehensive energy plan that showed Sabah had no need for the coal plant, raising questions about the true motives for the project. Mongabay’s reporting revealed conflicts of interests among the plant’s backers and detailed severe ecological threats, spurring articles by Time Magazine and other news outlets, which strengthened campaigners’ resolve and ratcheted up pressure on Malaysian officials to cancel the project. In 2011, the Malaysian government formally canceled the project, noted it would “pursue other alternative sources of energy.” That victory would help catalyze a broader movement to shift Southeast Asia cleaner energy sources. As a result, neighboring Sarawak in 2015 announced a major change to how it would pursue energy development. “Mongabay’s very existence as an ally for all our work, as a platform for issues, stories, wins, struggles, conversations, voices … is deeply needed and relevant,” said Ong. “Mongabay is a game changer in the world.” Help us do more...

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