Staff Writer, Environmental Investigations

  • Full-time

Company Description

Grist is a nonprofit, independent media organization dedicated to highlighting climate solutions and uncovering environmental injustices. Since 1999, we have engaged and informed the public about the perils of the most existential threat we face. Now that three-quarters of Americans recognize that climate change is happening, we’ve shifted our focus in part to demonstrate the ways that a just and sustainable future is within reach. 

Over the past four years, Grist has scaled from a Seattle based team of 20-25 to a nationally distributed organization of ~60 with a growing budget. Grist’s strategy centers on climate, justice, and solutions, and we implement our mission through three areas of work: Our award-winning Editorial Program; Fix, our newly launched Solutions Lab; and our work to transform talent and representation within environmental storytelling. 

Job Description

We are seeking a staff writer to contribute to our enterprise coverage. We’re looking for someone with stellar news judgment, a passion for storytelling, a drive to develop their craft, and a deep commitment to accountability journalism.

The reporter will pitch, report, and write stories on topics at the intersection of the environment, climate, policy, and social justice. The right person for this job will be interested in approaching this beat from an investigative and accountability lens -- and produce rich stories that go well beyond the public statements of advocates and officials. We're looking for someone who can take an expansive view of environmental justice and keep people at the center of their investigative work. A reporter with a nose for document digging and a FOIA template (or two or three) would thrive on this beat.

What does this role look like in practice? You’ll generally write 4 to 5 stories per month -- ranging from roughly 600 words to a few thousand --  and land a handful of enterprise or investigative projects per year. Grist is a small team, so you may also be asked to contribute to newsletters, collaborate on larger projects, appear in the occasional video, and represent Grist at conferences and workshops. 

Grist is based in Seattle, but the job doesn’t have to be. We have staff around the country.   This position is a member of Grist’s collective bargaining unit.


  • Conceive of, report, write, and produce stories of varying lengths on subjects at the intersection of climate, environment, social justice, and policy

  • Pitch, report, and write at least one multi-month investigation per year 

  • Contribute to Grist’s newsletters, special packages, and projects, as requested

  • Help mentor Grist fellows and reporters; be excited about sharing your methods and talents with your colleagues and learning about theirs 

  • Other duties as assigned


  • At least 2-4 years of reporting experience

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience

  • Professional reporting experience, knowledge, and interest in climate and environmental justice

  • Professional experience with investigative reporting techniques

  • A track record of covering stories of national importance and impact

  • Comfort with magazine-style journalism

  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment, juggling multiple priorities and deadlines

  • Comfort with technology, social media, and digital tools for journalism

  • Proficiency  with desktop writing tools and web technologies for news gathering and publishing

  • Superior organizational skills and obsessive attention to details

  • Experience finding sharp, provocative angles on the news of the day

  • Ability to work independently, demonstrate good personal judgment, and exercise a commitment to ethical conduct toward sources, story subjects, and readers

  • Excellent communication, interpersonal, and writing skills

  • Demonstrated poise, tact, diplomacy, and the ability to interact with individuals at all levels of the organization

And it sure would be nice if you also had:

  • Excitement about exploring innovative and creative ways to tell stories in a fast-moving environment, specifically for mobile devices

  • Comfort with data sets or experience with data reporting

  • A passion for helping Grist attract new, more diverse audiences for environmental stories

  • A strong voice and no qualms about using it, but an aversion to preaching to the choir

  • The ability to identify stories that will resonate online

Additional Information


Applicants must submit a resume and cover letter explaining why you’re a great fit for this position. Applications without both a resume and cover letter will not be considered. 

Total compensation package includes a competitive benefits package, including medical, dental and vision insurance. No phone calls, please.

Cultivating an inclusive staff is central to Grist’s focus on advancing equity. We’re interested in hearing from people who can work with diverse colleagues of varied experience. Candidates of all backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. Grist is an equal-opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status.