Name: Amarjyoti Borah
Organisation: Down to Earth
I had wanted to be a Journalist since my school days, and to full-fill my ambition I got involved as a full time reporter from the age of 21 for Pragjyoti Comunications, a news agency. Environmental reporting has always been of my interest and I had always wanted to specialise as an Environment Reporter. To exploit my energy to the maximum and report more on Environmental Issues, I have also been engaged as a stringer for Down to Earth since early 2005. Down to Earth (DTE) is currently India’s leading Environment Fortnightly; it is a part of the Center for Science and Environment (CSE), New Delhi. It was challenging for me as in India most media houses treats environmental reporting in a step motherly manner. To make my work as attractive as possible I started doing a lot of investigative reporting; this delivered some results and I could make a mark. I have experimented reporting on various issue through an environmental angle. In one sense I have reported on issues related to politics, insurgence, development through the eyes of an environmentalist. It delivered results and gave me the momentum to explore more issues.Over the years of my journalism career I have done many stories that have caused impacts and awareness. I have also brought out the views of militant on issues of environment before the public. It was an attempt to make people aware how issues of environment could give rise to militancy. I like to do research based stories; this gives me the opportunity to explore deeper on the issues and discover hidden angles. This also helps me do a follow-up story later on. I am based in the North Eastern part of India, a region which is ecoogically very fragile. I have reported extensively on the effects of climate change on the region. The region is also likely to suffer severely as a result of various ambitious industrial projects which are planned by the Indian govt. The problems in the regions are compunded by the effects of climate change, deforestation, haphazard planning and urbanisation. Over the last few years the region has suffered severely due to problems of flash flood, drought and dust storm, something that was unheard of in the region till a decade back. Regarding my career as a Journalist: I was adjudged the Youth Indian Environment Journalist (Print) of the Year 2007-08 by the Forum for Environmental Journalist in India (FEJI). According to the award jury my stories were comprehensive and well researched. In 2008 I was selected for a Scholarship to attend a two month training program on Environmental reporting in Berlin, Germany; the training and the scholarship was offered by InWent. We had many eminent Journalists as guest lecturers and it was an enriching experience. In October 2009 I had attended a training on Disaster reporting at New Delhi, the training was provided by Thomson Reuters foundation. I also attended a workshop on Environment and Climate Change reporting, to take place from October 28th – 31st, and organised by the Forum of Environment Journalists in India (FEJI). The Theme of the workshop was Bridging North-South Differences in Reporting Climate Change: Journalists’ Role in Reaching an Agreement at COP15 in Copenhagen” In 2010, I was selected as a Press fellow at Cambridge University, UK and I spent one term researching on my selected subject of interest, which is Climate Change and Environment Refugees.