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Clean energy journalism for a cooler tomorrow

Celebrate Canary Media’s first year of reporting on climate solutions

We’ve come a long way, but we’re just getting started.
By Eric Wesoff

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An image that says Canary Media is turning one with a birthday cake with one candle

Canary Media is celebrating its first birthday today. What a ride it’s been — a ride in an EV charged up by 24/7 clean energy, of course.

When we launched a year ago, we committed to producing in-depth news coverage of the clean energy transition — the story of our times. We formed as a nonprofit, an independent affiliate of the preeminent think tank RMI, so we could focus on reporting about the most critical developments and getting our work out to as many people as possible, not on making money via paywalls or clickbait. (Speaking of, did you know that nonprofits rely on donations? Could you make one to Canary? It’s tax-deductible, and the best birthday gift you could give us.)

From the start, Canary’s goal has been to fill a gap in climate coverage by delivering insightful journalism on clean energy, electrifying everything, modernizing the grid, and reducing the climate impact of transportation, buildings and heavy industry.

Our timing couldn’t have been better. The past year has seen unprecedented attention on climate solutions and a surge of activity across all these sectors. Our little team of writers and editors has been in a flat-out sprint to cover as much of it as we can.

The climate crisis is accelerating — just take a look at the latest U.N. climate report — but so are a number of positive trends:

  • Investors are waking up. Financiers are more aligned and committed to real climate action than ever before. In fact, there’s never been a better time to launch a climatetech startup or be a venture capital investor in the sector. U.S. startups in the space raised a total of $39.2 billion across 605 venture deals in 2021, and that momentum shows little sign of slowing down. 
  • Corporations are waking up. Major players such as Google and Microsoft are accelerating the market for clean energy; 20 percent of new utility-scale renewable power capacity from 2021 to 2030 could come from corporate power-purchase agreements, according to IHS Markit. Tech giants are also spurring the innovations that will make it possible for us to get to 24/7 clean energy, while major manufacturers have started pledging to use green steel and take other critical steps.
  • Political leaders are waking up. Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine has the potential to catalyze the global market and political appetite for clean energy. Governments are being forced to make immediate decisions about transitioning away from fossil fuels. As RMI’s Kingsmill Bond recently said, The supply-side shock of Putin’s war will galvanize the same dramatic response as the 1970s oil shocks did. The difference, however, is this time we’re prepared. We’ve got the renewable solutions. We have the political will.”
  • Citizens are waking up. Some of the most popular articles at Canary Media are in the how-to” category, serving homeowners hungry for tips on how to electrify, solarize and decarbonize in 2022, the year of the heat pump.
  • Even the mainstream media is beginning to wake up. Media Matters’ most recent annual study found a more than threefold increase from 2020 to 2021 in the amount of time climate change was discussed on morning, evening and Sunday TV news shows on ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox Broadcasting Co. 

Yet while many media outlets are reporting on climate change more frequently, they’re often focused more on the problem than on the solutions. At Canary, we stand apart with our deep-dive coverage of the companies, technologies, policies and people driving the shift to clean energy, today. If you’re looking for hope in what can seem like dark times, we’ve got you covered.

We’re proud of the progress we’ve made over the past year. We’ve published more than 650 articles, produced videos on topics like Hawaii’s energy transition, and put on live online events, including a heated debate on California solar policy. We host wildly popular and informative podcasts from Shayle Kann, Stephen Lacey and Julia Pyper. We’re cited and read by politicians, major news organizations, celebrities and the energy nerd community.

And we’re just getting started. We have ambitious plans to expand our journalism, host in-person events, and develop resources for people who want to learn more about clean energy and incorporate it into their own homes and lives.

But in order to keep our momentum going and cover the energy transition with the depth it warrants, our small nonprofit newsroom needs your help. On this one-year anniversary, we’re asking you to make a gift to keep Canary Media up and running. Please, if you appreciate our work, donate today!

And let us know what you think of Canary’s work so far and what you’d like to see in 2022 and beyond. Comment below, tweet at us or post a message on Facebook or LinkedIn. We’re incredibly grateful for you, our community of dedicated readers. We couldn’t have made it this far without you. Thanks for your support!

Eric Wesoff is editorial director at Canary Media.