SEJ conference and new blog post

I just returned from Chattanooga, Tennessee, where 100s (10s?) of like-minded journalists gathered in the early fall humidity to talk about the state of our industry, share story ideas and tour coal plants, farms and bat caves. There were test drives of all kinds of hybrid and highly efficient cars, a freelance pitch slam and one of the most thought-provoking discussions on biodiversity I’ve heard in a long time (thanks to M. Sanjayan, lead scientist at The Nature Conservancy, for his excellent moderating). I received a fellowship from SEJ to attend–thank you, thank you, thank you

Right before I left I wrote this post for High Country News about chronic wasting disease, which despite being 100% fatal and infecting more and more elk, deer and moose every year, gets very little attention. Why? It moves too damn slowly. “I’ve heard it called an epidemic in slow motion,” says Christopher Johnson, a research biologist at the National Wildlife Health Center in Wisconsin.

Moose shot by hunters in Maine (where there is no chronic wasting disease).

Moose shot by hunters in Maine (where there is no chronic wasting disease).