Climate change was the centre of discussion during a week-long visit by distinguished journalists from the Pulitzer Centre on Crisis Reporting to Northwestern University in Qatar (NU-Q).
As part of an annual visit to NU-Q to raise awareness of journalism campaigns that focus on global issues, three international reporters who specialise in reporting on climate change shared their experiences and discussed the future of the environmental issue.
As part of a presentation to the NU-Q community, Eli Kintisch, a contributing correspondent for Science magazine and author of Hack the Planet: Science's Best Hope — or Worst Nightmare — for Averting Climate Catastrophe, shared his personal experiences covering the Arctic, where glaciers are melting, temperature is drastically increasing and wildlife is being severely affected.
“Antarctica is different from the Arctic because Antarctica is land surrounded by water, whereas the Arctic is water surrounded by land, which makes for a very interesting climate,” said Kinitsch. “The temperature in the Arctic has increased by two degrees, twice as much as the rest of the earth, and as the temperature has gone up, the sea ice, which usually reflects solar energy back into the atmosphere, has plummeted, and that is contributing to global warming, rising sea levels and even hotter summer days in Qatar.”
NU-Q is one of 30 international universities that partner with the Pulitzer Centre to foster greater discussions around prevalent global issues and involve students in projects and fellowships at analysing worldwide areas of concern.
“The Pulitzer Centre’s mission is to support journalists who are covering urgent issues and to improve coverage on global issues. NU-Q is committed to educating our students on the importance of accurate and objective reporting, as well as exposing them to the realities of crisis reporting,” said Everette E Dennis, dean and CEO of NU-Q.
This year’s visiting journalists included Ako Salemi, an award-winning photojournalist from Iran who documents the impact of climate change on Iran’s desert landscape and the region surrounding it, and Janice Cantieri, a Northwestern alumna and Fulbright-National Geographic digital storytelling fellow who most recently reported on the impact of rising sea levels in Kiribati, an island in the South Pacific.
Accompanying the journalists was Tom Hundley, Pulitzer Centre senior editor, who has almost four decades of experience as a foreign correspondent for the Chicago Tribune. He served as the Tribune’s bureau chief in Jerusalem, Warsaw, Rome, and London, and reported from more than 60 countries, including three wars in the Arabian Gulf, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the rise of Iran’s post-revolutionary theocracy.
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