Pulitzer winning climate news

Lisa Song

Lisa Song joined InsideClimate News in January 2011, where she reports on oil sands, pipeline safety and natural gas drilling. She helped write "The Dilbit Disaster" series, which won the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting, was a finalist in the 2012 Scripps Howard Awards for Environmental Reporting and won an honorable mention in the 2012 John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Journalism. She previously worked as a freelancer, contributing to High Country News, Scientific American and New Scientist. Song has degrees in environmental science and science writing from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

You can reach her by email at lisa.song@insideclimatenews.org.



Nebraska Landowners Hold Keystone XL at Bay With Lawsuit

TransCanada is forced to drop its eminent domain claims to run the controversial tar sands pipeline through private lands.

Oct 1, 2015

TransCanada, the company behind the Keystone XL pipeline, has pulled out of a lawsuit launched by Nebraska landowners who oppose the project. The move ensures another delay of seven to 12 months in the Nebraska review process as the company seeks a legally approved route through the state.

AP Styles 'Deniers' into 'Doubters,' Creating Newsroom Skeptics

As the Associated Press tries to create consensus on what to call those who question climate science, more disagreement ensues.

Sep 29, 2015

A week after the Associated Press changed its official style on how to describe people who do not accept climate change science, its attempt to clarify the issue has resulted in little clarity. There is little agreement among climate reporters on if and how they would follow the new recommendation, and whether it will make any difference.

The AP's official stylebook––a widely used guide on word choice, grammar and other elements of writing––advised reporters to stop using "skeptics" or "deniers" and adopt "climate change doubters" or "those who reject mainstream climate science."

Landmark Paper Underestimated Methane Leaks from Gas Production, Study Says

Since 2003, a commonly used methane detector has been underestimating leak rates that feed into the national greenhouse gas registry.

Aug 4, 2015

A dispute between two environmental scientists is creating a controversy over how much methane is leaking from natural gas production and is contributing to global warming.

Most Extreme Weather Has Climate Change Link, Study Says

Global warming has created a 'new normal,' scientists say, and the old hesitance to attribute extreme weather to climate change is outdated.

Jun 23, 2015

In the wake of major hurricanes, floods and heat waves, scientists are quick to say that no single weather event can be attributed to climate change until careful analysis draws that conclusion. Now, a new study argues that thinking is backwards, that all extreme weather has a link to climate change.

The default position has been holding science back in connecting weather and climate, concludes the authors of a peer-reviewed paper published Monday in Nature Climate Change.

Weeks After Texas Oil Well Explosion, Families Still Can't Go Home

Three weeks after well explosion, families are still waiting and worrying as Canadian oil company Encana decontaminates their homes in Karnes County.

Jun 9, 2015

Several families remain displaced three weeks after an oil well exploded in Karnes County, Texas, and the true extent of the contamination is unknown.

More than a dozen households were evacuated after the well blowout in mid-May. As of Monday, five families were unable to return home because their houses are being decontaminated, said Doug Hock, a spokesman for Encana, the Canadian company that owns the well.

Obama Picks Unknown Quantity to Head Pipeline Safety Agency

If confirmed, Dominguez would take over an underfunded, understaffed and beleaguered agency that has faced criticism of cozy ties with industry.

Jun 2, 2015

The nomination of Marie Therese Dominguez, President Obama's pick to lead the federal agency that oversees pipelines, was greeted with surprise and uncertainty by pipeline safety experts.

Carl Weimer, executive director of the watchdog group Pipeline Safety Trust, said he hadn't heard of Dominguez before the nomination, and knew nothing about her track record in the pipeline sector. Weimer said he would reserve judgement until after her confirmation, and said he hoped she would speed the passage of several pipeline safety rules currently lingering in regulatory limbo.

Did Texas Illegally Relax Rules on Coal Plants?

When Texas regulators bypassed the EPA to ease air pollution regulations on 19 coal plants, they violated the federal Clean Air Act, a new petition says.

May 27, 2015

Texas regulators quietly worked with the coal industry to illegally exempt 19 coal-fired power plants from parts of the Clean Air Act, environmental groups claimed in a petition filed today with the Environmental Protection Agency.

Well Explosion Douses Texas Neighborhood Already Weary of Fracking

Blowout in an oil and gas well owned by Encana Corp. in Karnes County prompts evacuations and heightens frustrations.

May 21, 2015

Jeanne Shepherd was on her way to a church gathering when an oil and gas well in Karnes County, Texas blew its top on Tuesday afternoon. A mixture of liquid petroleum products gushed high into the air. Some of it splashed onto Shepherd’s truck, coating her windshield in an opaque, milky film.

Shepherd said the well looked like the Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park. "It spewed and it spewed … It was all over everywhere, and I knew I wasn't going home that night," she said.