Circle of Blue: In the News
On Tuesday, July 10, 2012, Michigan Senator Carl Levin recognized Circle of Blue founder and director J. Carl Ganter for his recent innovation award from the Rockefeller Foundation.
Mr. President, I extend a hearty congratulations to J. Carl Ganter, director and founder of Circle of Blue in Traverse City, Michigan, on receiving the 2012 Rockefeller Foundation Innovation Award. Innovation and collaboration are two components critical to solving the challenges we face as a state and as a nation. Organizations like Circle of Blue are leading the charge, helping to inform our discussions and to guide us on a path toward lasting, comprehensive solutions.
Circle of Blue has focused its efforts on the global freshwater crisis for more than a decade and has successfully united an international network of leading journalists, scientists, and data experts to shed light on this issue and to illuminate a better path forward. This work has spurred meaningful, dynamic, and workable processes and information that are helping to solve real and pressing problems for communities in need.
Read more of Levin’s letter here.
NEW YORK and GENEVA — (March 2012) The World Economic Forum‘s Network of Global Agenda Councils and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) called on global leaders, particularly organizers of the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development scheduled for June 2012, to integrate population in research, discussion and debate at the intersection of water, food and energy.
“We reaffirm the global commitment to poverty reduction and sustainability, and emphasize that we will not reach these objectives without addressing the nexus between water, food, energy and population dynamics; governments, the private sector and civil society need to take population dynamics into consideration,” the joint statement said.
J. Carl Ganter, Circle of Blue’s managing director and a co-author of the document, said, “These issues are intrinsically interlinked. Water, food, energy and population issues need to be viewed systemically, beyond traditional thinking, outside of traditional silos.” Ganter is a member of the Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Water Security.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Dr. Jennifer Turner, director of the China Environment Forum at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, presented findings from Choke Point: China to members of the U.S. China Economic and Security Review Commission in Washington, D.C., on January 26, 2012.
Choke Point: China — a joint project between the China Environment Forum and
“The water issue is their biggest environmental challenge,” Turner said at the Congressional hearing last month. “This could be a really fruitful area for U.S.-China cooperation.”
Turner’s testimony highlighted the global implications of the water-energy “nexus,” given that 20 percent of China’s water is being use to produce coal-fired energy. “Where are they going to get that water?”
Dr. Turner’s testimony begins at 91:30 in the video.
The U.S. China Economic and Security Review Commission, according to its website, “was created by the United States Congress in October 2000 with the legislative mandate to monitor, investigate, and submit to Congress an annual report on the national security implications of the bilateral trade and economic relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, and to provide recommendations, where appropriate, to Congress for legislative and administrative action.”
Dialogue — the Wilson Center’s award-winning television and radio program that explores the world of ideas through weekly, half-hour conversations with renowned public figures, scholars, journalists, and authors — featured “Choke Point: The World’s Looming Water Crisis.” …Read More…
On Monday, Toby Smith — who was on location with Circle of Blue’s senior editor, Keith Schneider, as part of the Choke Point: China reporting team last December — and some of his photos from China were featured in The New York Times.
Smith, an award-winning contemporary reportage photographer specializing in energy and environment matters, was a key player on the Circle of Blue team, documenting China’s water-energy nexus from his unique lens.
Smith’s time is divided between long-term personal, international, editorial, and contemporary works for exhibition. His feature stills and video work have been published by clients such as GEO, Sunday Telegraph, Sunday Times, The Guardian, Fortune, TIME, The New York Times, BBC, and Sky News. Recent projects have included an undercover expose on illegal logging in Madagascar, which snowballed into an international investigation, and his renewable-energy project from Scotland has been awarded an “Innovation in Storytelling” grant for publication by National Geographic online. Reach Smith at email@example.com
For more of Smith’s work from China, check out Circle of Blue’s Choke Point: China package, which traces the confrontation of water scarcity and energy demand in the world’s fastest-growing industrial economy.
Circle of Blue’s Brett Walton is one of 14 journalists awarded a fellowship to attend the Energy Country Institute, an expedition-style immersion program sponsored by the Institutes for Journalism & Natural Resources (IJNR). …Read More…
This week, Circle of Blue adds two distinguished professionals to our Advisory Board. …Read More…
Social innovation/entrepreneur expert David Wilcox writes for CSR Wire:
During 2011, Circle of Blue has collaborated with the China Environment Forum at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars to report on energy demand and water supply in China. Their extensive coverage and reporting included over a dozen presentations of the results in China. The context for this coverage—called Choke Point: China—is positioned as follows:
“Over the last decade alone, 70 million new jobs emerged from an economy that this year, according to the World Bank and other authorities, generated the world’s largest markets for cars, steel, cement, glass, housing, energy, power plants, wind turbines, solar panels, highways, high-speed rail systems, airports and other basic supplies and civic equipment to support a modern economy.
Yet, like a tectonic fault line, underlying China’s new standing in the world is an increasingly fierce competition between energy and water that threatens to upend China’s progress.”
Last week in Stockholm, the 23rd World Water Week convened and could have featured the tag line, Choke Point: World.
Read the full report by Wilcox here.
Ball State University reports on the ongoing collaboration with Circle of Blue:
Kelly Shea, ’11, strives to make hope visible. The journalism graphics major led a team of Ball State students to develop information graphics for global news organization Circle of Blue, a consortium of leading journalists, design experts, and scientists dedicated to chronicling the murky intricacies of the global water crisis.
In fall 2010, Shea and a handful of her peers—mentored by multimedia journalism professor Jennifer Palilonis—created interactive graphics that visually convey the elaborate statistics and complex stories Circle of Blue has been reporting since its inception in 2002. The immersive learning experience exposed impassioned students to the demands of professional journalism and the significance of water scarcity on the sweeping political, social, and economic issues of our time.
Read the full story on the Ball State University website here.
J. Carl Ganter is director of Circle of Blue, a global water research organization at the heart of the Great Lakes.
TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan — The World Economic Forum, the Geneva-based organization best known for convening global leaders through its annual conference in Davos, Switzerland, has appointed J. Carl Ganter, co-founder and director for Circle of Blue, to its Global Agenda Council on Water Security.
According to the Forum, the Global Agenda Councils represent “the world’s foremost interdisciplinary brain trust of innovative thinking and idea exchange on global issues.”
“The availability and management of clean water is the most important challenge we face today for our health, economy, energy, food, and our future,” Ganter said. “The position on the Council offers a rare opportunity to work with some of the world’s most passionate, talented people who are coming together to help solve very complex problems.”
Established four years ago, the Global Agenda Councils act as a catalyst to monitor and address key issues, including water, energy, food, climate, trade, and nuclear security. Each council has between 15 and 20 members, providing insights and recommendations for world leaders in business, technology, and government.
Ganter is an award-winning photojournalist, reporter, and broadcaster who is widely credited with helping to shape the multimedia era. He co-founded Circle of Blue 10 years ago when he first saw the need for a trusted, central source of information on the global water crisis.
More than five million people die each year due to a lack of safe drinking water, and the United Nations estimates that 5.5 billion people will lack adequate access to fresh water in the next 20 years. Water scarcity and pollution have emerged as serious threats to peoples and businesses around the world. Agriculture and energy production are the leading users of water worldwide.
Over the past year, Circle of Blue has completed unprecedented, in-depth reporting about the struggles between water and energy, which have profound global implications on everything from food prices to adaptation to climate change. From the coal mines of West Virginia to hydraulic fracturing of natural gas wells in Michigan, Circle of Blue began exploring the “choke points” in U.S. energy production in June 2010.
In December 2010, the choke point coverage expanded to the northern coal fields of Inner Mongolia and the rivers of southern China’s hydropower region. In both countries, Circle of Blue documented striking similarities between the increasing demand for energy and the decreasing supplies of freshwater sources that are crucial for energy production.
“Water security needs to be defined in the broadest sense,” Ganter said. “It means healthy Great Lakes, which supply water to 30 million people. It means access to safe drinking water in fragile states like Yemen and the Middle East. It means water to grow food in famine-stricken East Africa. We all have to roll up our sleeves — these aren’t easy challenges.”
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences wrote in 2010, “Circle of Blue is filling a niche by providing specialized content that is considered essential by an audience of shared interests but that can’t be found in such detail anywhere else. In many ways, it is reflective of a shift in how we define journalism, or at the very least, in how we go about producing and sharing it.”
Circle of Blue, a nonprofit organization and affiliate of the California-based Pacific Institute, is funded by donations from individuals and foundations that believe informed policy makers and the public make better decisions. Click here to support Circle of Blue’s reporting.
About Circle of Blue
Circle of Blue is the international, nonpartisan network of leading journalists, scientists, and designers that reports and presents the information necessary to respond to the global freshwater crisis. It is a nonprofit affiliate of the Pacific Institute, an international water, climate, and policy think tank, and it publishes WaterNews, the daily go-to source for global water news and data. www.circleofblue.org
About the World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization, committed to improving the state of the world by engaging leaders in partnerships to shape global, regional, and industrial agendas. Incorporated as a foundation in 1971 and based in Geneva, Switzerland, the World Economic Forum is impartial and not-for-profit; it is tied to no political, partisan, or national interests. www.weforum.org