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About the Program

Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) aims to empower young people to take a stand on environmental issues they feel strongly about and to give them a platform to articulate these issues through the media of writing, photography, or video. 

YRE International, Magui


Witnessing the global change of the environment, Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) originated in France in 1991, during an international youth mission to Kiruna (Sweden). The mission was to understand ozone layer depletion and explain the problem to a larger public audience. The ozone layer problem revealed complexity of environmental issues and how essential it is to explain that basic local behavior can be responsible for global problems. To deal with this issue, a program using journalistic investigation and reportage was identified as a powerful tool to motivate global youth: tomorrow’s leaders. Since 1997, the program has been managed by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). Today we have 70,000+ students and 7,500+ teachers in 31 countries (and counting) involved in the program.


Why participate in Young Reporters for the Environment? 
In communities across the nation, you'll find countless issues that impact the natural environment and, along with it, human health and well-being. By telling these stories, you can help people understand what is at stake and what solutions are available.


By participating in YRE-USA, students will gain valuable academic and career skills in the following areas:

  • Experience in analyzing and understanding environmental issues from different perspectives.
  • A chance to explore your interests and talents. You may find that environmental journalism is something you'd like to pursue beyond the competition, perhaps in college or even as a career.
  • By entering their work in the competition, students will be in the running for national and even international recognition.
  • Most importantly, they will have a chance to make a real difference in your community. The work will shed light on an important issue and provoke discussion around it, possibly leading to community-based action.


YRE-USA can be utilized in many different settings, from journalism class to after-school clubs, to:

  • Increase literacy and communication skills.
  • Develop deeper understanding within the academic core subjects: the language arts, math, science, and social studies.
  • Empower students to make informed decisions and take actions on real-life sustainability issues.
  • Encourage students to actively collaborate and involve their communities in finding solutions.
  • Challenge students to examine their assumptions, knowledge, and experiences in order to develop critical systems thinking, and be open to change and mindful of cultural practices.

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