2013 was a big year for climate news. In May, atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide passed the 400 parts per million threshold for the first time in millions of years. In June, President Obama announced his Climate Action Plan, and in November, the monster typhoon, Haiyan slammed into the Philippines.

2013 was also the year that the New York Times decided to close its environment desk and conclude coverage of energy and environment issues on its Green Blog. The seven reporters and two editors dedicated to environment coverage were assigned elsewhere, and a dozen Green Blog contributors were bid farewell.

The decision was met with disbelief and consternation by many, although readers were promised that The Times’s environmental coverage would be as aggressive as ever, and that the decision was purely structural.

In the Columbia Journalism Review, Curtis Brainard wrote that ‘They’ve made a horrible decision that ensures the deterioration of The Times’s environmental coverage at a time when debates about climate change, energy, natural resources and sustainability have never been more important to public welfare.

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