2016 Biodiversity Story Grants
Out of Balance
The Earth is home to millions of species whose interactions keep our ecosystems and our planet in balance. This biodiversity provides the clean air we breathe and the food we eat, as well as a wide variety of other goods and services that enable us to thrive.
Despite the important roles these species play in our daily lives, human activity poses the gravest threat to biodiversity at local to global scales. Forests are being cleared to make room for agricultural production, oceans are overfished and wildlife is in decline due to poaching and lost habitat.
Some experts estimate that the rapid species loss seen today is 1,000 to 10,000 times higher than the natural extinction rate, or what would occur in the absence of human intervention. As habitats shrink and species disappear, so do the many important benefits they provide us, from providing natural regulation of infectious diseases and being an important source of pharmaceuticals, to reducing the impact of natural disasters such as floods.
The Earth Journalism Network is looking to capture the importance of these losses by commissioning a series of stories that investigate new threats to species diversity around the world, as well as innovative, potentially-scalable conservation solutions.
Funding for this series is being provided by the Arcadia Fund.
Expected story lengths:*
Investigative piece: 2,500 to 5,000 words (can be combined with video, photos, graphics, and/or maps)
News article: 500 to 1,200 words
Multimedia package: Video piece 2-6 minutes in length that can be accompanied by possible graphics, photos, text, maps
*NOTE: Proposals for long-form narratives and news articles should include plans for accompanying multimedia elements such as photos and video.
Who should apply?
Journalists (online, print, television) and other expert media practitioners with a track record of reporting on environmental issues are welcome to apply. We encourage freelancers and staff from all types of media outlets—both large and small—to submit applications.
Publication of funded stories
It is a condition of the grant that Internews and the Arcadia Foundation can publish and distribute the funded stories. However, the writers / producers of funded stories will also be free to publish or broadcast their stories in other media outlets, and indeed are encouraged to do so.