chapter  3
18 Pages

The rise of environmental journalism in Asia, Africa, and Latin America

WithBill Kovarik

The story of environmental journalism tends to focus on North America and Europe. Nevertheless, reporters in Asia, Africa, and Latin America have a long history of responding to their own environmental issues. This chapter disproves the myth that the developing world is “too poor to be green.” The author takes us from Brazilian journalist Euclides da Cunha in 1902, to the Philippines in 1908, to India in 1950, and then to the newspaper coverage, extraordinary photographs, and television documentary about Minamata disease in Japan from 1954 to 1971. He describes the coverage of the Green Revolution in India, the rise of environmental journalism in China, and the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant disaster in Japan. He notes that “environmental beats have turned out to be among the most dangerous in journalism, especially in the global South where the news media of most countries is either partly free or not free,” and reports that “the space for environmental journalism is shrinking” in India, as it is in the West.