Investigation into Exxon’s Secretive Climate Change Research

The National Press Foundation has awarded its Thomas L. Stokes Award for Best Energy Writing to InsideClimate News for an investigation into Exxon and its climate change research.

NPF judges selected InsideClimate News’ extraordinary work that revealed Exxon’s secretive scientific research into the impact of fossil fuels on the environment. A team of four reporters produced an exhaustive project titled “Exxon: The Road Not Taken.”

The NPF judges said: “The InsideClimate News project was one of the most significant journalism efforts of 2015. It disclosed stunning information: Exxon knew and decided to hide its scientific findings on the impact of fossil fuels on the environment. How could this stay secret for 30 years? The ground-breaking investigation by InsideClimate News represents a cherished tenet of journalism: to hold people with power accountable.”

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The InsideClimate News team included Neela Banerjee, John H. Cushman Jr., David Hasemyer and Lisa Song.

Judges for the Stokes award were Rod Kuckro, a reporter for Energy & Environment Publishing; Ronnie Greene, Washington enterprise editor for Reuters; and John Walcott, NPF past chairman and adjunct professor at Georgetown University. The judges noted the strong field of 39 entries for the Stokes award this year.

The Thomas L. Stokes Award was established in 1959 by friends and admirers of the late Thomas L. Stokes, the syndicated Washington columnist on national affairs. It was to be given annually for the best writing “in the independent spirit of Tom Stokes” on subjects of interest to him, including energy and natural resources.

The primary mission of the National Press Foundation is to increase journalists’ knowledge of complex issues in order to improve public understanding. The nonprofit foundation recognizes and encourages excellence in journalism through its awards and programs.

A complete list NPF’s journalism awards is here. More information about NPF programs is on our website. To support NPF’s work, contact President Sandy K. Johnson at sjohnson@nationalpress.org, or make a donation online.