Over the past decade, coverage of sustainability has matured and broadened. Where before the topic was a niche issue in select outlets, reporters on a wide variety of beats, such as travel and leisure, now include sustainability trends and news in their coverage. What sparked this shift?
Millennials made it clear that they considered corporate sustainability and responsibility in their employment and purchasing decisions — and they were willing to pay a premium on sustainable products. Now comes Generation Z, born between 1996 and 2015, which has the buying power of $140+ billion. Studies show that Gen Z wants companies to use their scale to push for environmental progress, human rights, inclusion and honesty and transparency.
Companies today must proactively communicate about their ESG and sustainability goals and achievements. How can PR pros help them get coverage for their efforts? Pro tip #1: Look to reporters covering sustainability in your industry to increase your odds of landing a good story. Pro tip #2: Large corporations push their sustainability news through (the pricey) subscription service 3BL. And pro tip #3: Follow these top reporters in five key beats.
Top 5 Sustainability Reporters — And Their Beats
Sustainability Solutions and Start-ups
Adele Peters, Fast Company, @adele_peters: While staff writer Adele Peters might not define her beat as sustainability, she does cover start-ups and companies bringing sustainability solutions to the market — in that highly engaging, Fast Company way. She focuses on new solutions to some of the world’s largest problems, from climate change to homelessness. Her stories are often tagged “IMPACT” by the outlet. A must read: This new tech pulls valuable metals directly from water.
Jim Giles, GreenBiz, @jimgiles: Giles is a food and carbon analyst at GreenBiz. He is responsible for developing VERGE Carbon, a conference dedicated to the business opportunities in the emerging carbon economy, and VERGE Food, focused on sustainable food systems. A must read: Chewing on Chipotle’s new food emissions labels.
Anne Marie Mohan, Packaging World and Greener Package, @packagingtrends: An experienced and thoughtful editor, Mohan is deeply knowledgeable about packaging and was instrumental in launching and shaping Greener Package coverage. A must read: Walmart Goes ‘Beyond Sustainability,’ Vowing to Become a Regenerative Company.
Sarah Borchersen-Keto, REIT, @REITs-Nariet: REIT is the monthly magazine produced by the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT). Editor Sarah Borchersen-Keto is deeply knowledgeable on the topics commercial real estate (CRE) and sustainability — and, particularly, capital flows. What’s more, she assigns stories to writers and freelancers. Most recently, as you would expect, REIT has been covering the impact of the pandemic on the CRE market and investment. A must read: REITs Named to CDP Climate Change A List of Environmental Leaders.
Mike Millikin, Green Car Congress, @mmillkin: More of a blog, Green Car Congress is considered a good outlet for companies in the transportation sector or those servicing that sector. Green Car Congress digs deep into technical details that traditional outlets may not be able to. The site also includes posts on clean energy. Millikin launched Green Car Congress in 2004. A must read: EC proposes modernizing EU legislation on batteries to enhance sustainability and safety
RH Strategic is a Seattle and D.C.-based communications firm with a nationwide presence and additional global reach via membership in the Worldcom Public Relations Group. We provide strategic public relations for innovators in the technology, government and healthcare markets.