Alex Lamb
February 20, 2024

A win for climate journalism

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I have great news to share: The Walkley Foundation has announced a new journalism award category for ‘Coverage of Science and the Environment’, which will include reporting on climate change.

Thank you so much for supporting the campaign to make this happen.

1,200 of you voted for your favourite climate cartoon in our online competition, and signed our open letter calling on the Walkley Foundation to abandon their fossil fuel sponsorship and introduce a new standalone climate reporting category.

According to the Walkley Foundation’s statement, they have ‘listened to the many journalists who have asked the foundation for a more specific category award to recognise journalists covering important issues like medical and advanced science, innovation, climate change; environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, deforestation, and air, earth and water pollution, across all forms of media.’

The campaign was spearheaded by cartoonist Jon Kudelka who organised a mass withdrawal of Walkley Award applicants because of Ampol’s sponsorship of the award.

An open letter organised by Comms Declare and signed by 43 journalists called on the Walkley Foundation to:

  • establish a climate reporting award
  • agree to not renew its sponsorship arrangement with Ampol
  • commit to declining any new sponsorship arrangement with a coal, oil or gas company.

The Walkley Foundation has not responded to the calls to drop sponsorship from fossil fuel companies.

However, this recent announcement is a step in the right direction and demonstrates the power of collective action. Journalism covering the climate crisis and spotlighting the failure of governments to adequately address global warming deserve recognition and acknowledgement. 

Thank you so much for participating in our Climate Cartoon competition to help amplify this campaign, and share the powerful work of climate cartoonists.

Head of Strategic Communications

Alex has worked in media, parliament, and the international development sector. Before joining Climate 200 she worked for Transparency International Australia, helping to coordinate a global campaign against corruption in the mining sector, and campaign for a national anti-corruption commission in Australia. Prior to that, she advocated for greater support for gender equality and reproductive rights in the Australian aid program