Energy reporter

Industrial safety and LA transport issues win 100% Journalism Challenge

100% Journalism WinnersEnergy reporter Joan Gralla and environmental writer Richard Risemberg will split $35,000 in prize money for their innovative total-coverage journalism projects as part of the E&P/Ebyline 100% Journalism Challenge. Gralla, a former Reuters correspondent, will use the funds to commission freelance reporters to investigate industrial accidents in oil refineries. Her experience covering the energy sector indicates that many potentially lethal incidents go under-reported, so the sector is ripe for coverage.
“I discovered that there were many smaller accidents [at refineries] that were going on all the time,” says Gralla, “and if you started looking for patterns you could see that some refineries were more dangerous than others. It would be really helpful to start reporting all of these incidents because they’re a matter of public safety.”

Risemberg, an environmental journalist and advocate, has reported extensively on sustainable development for publications like the L.A. Business Journal. His project focuses on the Port of Los Angeles, the nation’s busiest, and the effects on nearby communities of current plans to expand the port and its transportation infrastructure through which 40% of the nation’s freight moves.

“In a globalized world, the movement of goods is a foundation of prosperity, yet it can have devastating effects on communities and businesses,” said Risemberg. “How this particular region develops will set patterns for a generation to come.”

The winners were chosen from nine qualified finalists by judges Leo Wolinsky, Robert Wallace, and Melanie Sill.

The prize money will be used as a credit on Ebyline to commission original reporting from our database of 2,300 vetted, experienced freelance writers and professionals. We’ll be tracking Joan and Rick’s stories right here on the blog.

About Ebyline Staff

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