The Guardian’s green progress: what are we doing to practice what we preach on climate?

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The Guardian’s green progress: what are we doing to practice what we preach on climate?

A brief rundown of the steps we are taking to help bring the climate crisis to the fore of our journalism and our wider work as an organisation

Guardian newspaper and supplements

Guardian staff

Last modified on Sun 31 Oct 2021 04.02 EDT

‘We’re all climate journalists now’

A quote oft repeated by our Environment editor Damian Carrington, and one that is highly relevant amid our push to ensure the climate crisis is considered in all our journalism, by all our editors, and isn’t just siloed to the dedicated Environment pages. This means, you will see it explored, discussed and addressed in sections ranging from News, Sport and Business, to Food, Fashion and Tech – and beyond. Importantly, we believe this is a moment for hope, not fear, and will endeavour to provide journalism that offers clarity on the situation, updates on our progress, and ideas and solutions for what more can be done.

Climate Justice Reporting in the US

All over the world, the climate emergency is hitting poor people and communities of colour hardest. They suffer more from the pollution emitted by petrochemical facilities, from the sweltering heat making swaths of the globe unlivable, and from the intensifying fires, hurricanes and floods destroying homes and communities. Guardian US is dedicating growing resources to make sure issues of climate justice are given the attention they have long lacked from much of the press. In the US alone, we currently have three journalists dedicated full-time to the environmental justice beat. They report and commission sweeping examinations of America’s broken water system, the disproportionate effects of global heating on farmworkers and children of colour, whether the Biden administration’s stated commitment to environmental justice will meet the urgency required, and more. They are joined by dozens of editors, reporters and freelancers around the world who ensure the people and communities shouldering the burden of the crisis are at the centre of our day-to-day coverage.

Australia v The Climate

A five-part investigative podcast series has been launched, as part of Guardian Australia’s Full Story podcast. It takes listeners inside the special deals, bullying, and brief moments of hope that have marked Australia’s role in international efforts to address global heating. You can access every episode here.

Recently, we have published several standout exclusives on the government’s lobbying to keep the coral reef off Australia’s danger list, produced in-depth reporting on bushfires, toxic air, the nation’s coal industry and much more.

Saturday

  • Our recently relaunched magazine features lots of in-depth environmental content and will continue to have a strong sustainability focus throughout and long after Cop26.

  • Our new magazine is printed on paper with a much lower carbon footprint than its predecessor, and there is no wrapping – all moves designed to reduce our carbon footprint

  • We have brought in a weekly quiz where you can test your knowledge of the climate crisis – in an attempt to engage readers both young and old in different ways.

  • A special 20-page supplement is available for Cop26, featuring a statement of intent from our editor-in-chief Katharine Viner. On the 6th November, a digital climate supplement will also be available for digital subscriber – and if you don’t already subscribe, we are currently offering a free 14-day trial.

  • Feast has started a new column from Thomasina Miers, The New Flexitarian, designed to help people eat less meat. We continue with our policy of sustainable-fish only, we avoid running beef recipes, and where we do run them, we suggest substitutions wherever possible.

  • We have a weekly Waste Not column by eco chef Tom Hunt, which suggests ways of using up ingredients – this month, mushrooms, stale bread, pumpkins, and leftover leeks.

  • … and we have started a new three-page Environment section in the paper, to ensure we have dedicated space for the latest climate news.

Navigation bar on theguardian.com

  • ‘Climate crisis’ is now the fourth tab that readers can click on when they access our website, preceded only by national and international breaking news, and the coronavirus latest.

  • The Environment news tab remains in place, for fast access to stories on wider environmental issues.

New dashboard on our homepage

… displaying daily updated atmospheric CO2 and arctic sea ice levels as well as renewable electricity production in the UK

Guardian Live events

Newsletters

  • We have relaunched our longstanding environment newsletter, with a new name – Down to Earth – as well as a new format and new design. It will run twice weekly during COP, before returning to its usual weekly schedule. You can sign up to receive it here.

  • Throughout COP, we will run a special series of newsletters for Guardian supporters.

As an organisation , how are we progressing on our path to net zero?

Climate Pledge

  • Two years since we made our original pledge announcement, lots has been happening behind the scenes to ensure we reach our climate targets. We were 30% down on our carbon footprint by the end of 2021 business year, and we are on track to meet a 2/3 reduction in carbon footprint by 2030.

  • We continue to reject advertising from companies which divest in fossil fuel.

  • As the first major media organisation to achieve B Corp status, we are one of a collection of companies which values purpose as much as profit. We are acting on things like our working practices, how we recruit, our environmental performance and how we support local communities.

Print wrapping

  • We have gone from three supplements to one, a move that has reduced the number of print runs.

  • We have removed the wrapping process, and gone from polythene wrapping, to compostable wrapping, to no wrapping at all. We found that readers and local authorities often didn’t know/have the facilities to dispose of it properly, and it often ended up being burnt. So now, we have what our environment columnist George Monbiot suggested was the best wrapper of all – NOTHING – for all our print products bar Guardian Weekly, which requires a paper wrapping because it is posted out to its readers.

  • The paper we use for our daily newspaper is 100% recycled – placing us well ahead of the rest of the UK market.

  • Our print supplier is increasingly making the move towards 100% renewable electricity.

Green jobs project

  • Jobs that have a direct, positive impact on the planet traditionally involve renewable energy, electric transport, energy efficiency or nature conservation. But right now, as more sectors transition to low-carbon models, every job has the potential to become “green”. Guardian Jobs is committed to making jobs like these accessible for everyone, whatever their background.

Transparency

  • We are committed to keeping readers fully up-to-date on all the green progress we’re making as an organisation, as we make it. For a detailed look at our 19/20 carbon audit results, do read our in-depth Positive Impact and Sustainability Report.

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