CPB will award $1.4 million to seven public radio and TV stations for the creation of a new Local Journalism Center covering energy policy, production, use and innovation.
The grant is for two years, and the LJC will hire seven new positions along with freelance multimedia reporters to cover the beat, according to CPB spokesperson Kelly Broadway.
Rocky Mountain PBS and KUVO-FM in Colorado are the lead stations on the initiative, which will focus on the West and Great Plains. The other participating stations, together covering six states and parts of Canada, are northern Colorado's KUNC-FM, Colorado Public Television, Wyoming Public Media, Wyoming PBS and Prairie Public.
The energy LJC, which will use data-based reporting to cover local and regional energy issues, is the second that CPB has committed to funding this year. The first, a Pennsylvania-based project studying urban decline, was announced in November.
CPB gave more than $8 million to launch seven LJCs in 2010 and 2011 but will phase out funding for those hubs even as it helps launch the two new ones, according to a July Nieman Lab article.