Why I keep putting on hard hats

Reporting on the clean energy transition takes me to some surprising places.
By Maria Gallucci

  • Link copied to clipboard
four photos of woman in hardhat at factories and construction sites

Dear Canary Media reader,

My reporting for Canary Media can require me to wield more than a notebook and pen. Sometimes, it means donning a hard hat, too.

I’ve amassed a collection of photos of myself wearing protective headgear in noisy factories, at construction sites, and while test-riding novel forms of transportation. (I probably could’ve used one while scaling rooftops with solar panels in Puerto Rico.)

Harder to convey are the unusual smells I encounter in the field. Like the time I rode along with a tanker-truck driver who collects used cooking oil and greasy fat globs, which later become so-called sustainable aviation fuel.” I went home from my tour of New Jersey’s fast-food kitchens smelling like I’d stepped out of a deep fryer. And the time I visited an Ohio factory that recycles lithium-ion batteries, which invoked the scent of a giant Sharpie permanent marker.

Telling the stories of the clean energy transition often requires visiting sites where new technologies are being developed and new infrastructure is being built. It’s this kind of on-the-ground reporting that gives Canary Media reporters a firsthand understanding of the ongoing transformation of our energy systems — and enables us to explain both the nuanced challenges and the tangible progress that’s being made today.

If you appreciate Canary’s reporting from the front lines of the energy transition, can you make a donation to help us keep doing it?

Canary Media is a nonprofit, so we depend on contributions from readers like you to support our journalism — and help us report from the sites where a cleaner, better world is already being built. Please make a gift today!

Many thanks,

Maria Gallucci
Senior Reporter
Canary Media

Maria Gallucci is a senior reporter at Canary Media. She covers emerging clean energy technologies and efforts to electrify transportation and decarbonize heavy industry.