ICN’s Exxon Series Honored With Scripps Howard Award for Outstanding Environmental Journalism

The Edward J. Meeman Award recognizes the best environmental journalism each year.

Credit: Paul Horn/InsideClimate News

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Updated 4/29/2016: Here’s the Scripps Howard video explaining the Exxon series and why the judges selected it:

The Scripps Howard Foundation has honored InsideClimate News with its award for outstanding environmental journalism in 2015 for ICN’s “Exxon: The Road Not Taken” series.

Scripps Howard honors journalism and journalism education in 15 awards categories every year. ICN was awarded $10,000 for its work exposing Exxon’s history of climate research stretching back to the 1970s, contrasting its depth of understanding of the science with its decades of work publicly discrediting that science.

The judges wrote: “For the past 20 years Exxon has worked to discredit climate science. But, as we learn from InsideClimate News’ compelling series, the company had evidence suggesting the opposite was true. From its own scientists. For years.”

The judges honored the series team of Neela Banerjee, John H. Cushman Jr., David Hasemyer and Lisa Song.

The award is the third received so far by ICN for its work on the series. The series was named a finalist for the Goldsmith Award for Investigative Journalism given by the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. ICN also won the Izzy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Independent Media.

Scripps Howard’s prize is named the Edward J. Meeman Award, given yearly to recognize journalism focusing on environmental issues. Meeman was a newspaper editor in The E.W. Scripps Company with a particular passion for conservation and the environment.

Recipients of the awards will be honored in a ceremony Scottsdale, Ariz., on April 28.

“Journalism is alive and well and making a tremendous impact on people’s lives. We can certainly say that with confidence after reviewing all of the outstanding entries and deciding on the winners this year,” said Liz Carter, president and CEO of the Scripps Howard Foundation. “The commitment to excellence in their craft exhibited by these professionals is overwhelming and inspiring.”

Two finalists were recognized in the environmental reporting category: MSNBC Longform and Peg Leg Films for “Just Eat It,” an investigation tracing food waste from the farm through retail and all the way to the back of the reporters’ own refrigerators; and Patricia Callahan of the Chicago Tribune for “Chemical Harvest,” examining the increased use of a World War II-era herbicide linked to cancer and other health problems.