The Knight-Risser Prize
for Western Environmental Journalism
The Knight-Risser Prize and Symposium are being reimagined to better encourage coverage of important environmental issues affecting the West. Please follow @JSKstanford on Twitter for more information and announcements.

2017 Knight-Risser Prize Symposium
When the Well Runs Dry:
Facing a Groundwater Crisis in the West

Read a summary of the January 2017 Knight Risser Prize Symposium with photos and complete audio and video here.

Please join us on January 25th as we celebrate the 2016 Knight-Risser Prize winner Ian James and his colleagues at the Desert Sun and USA Today. Their report,“Pumped Dry” explored groundwater overdraft in the American West and worldwide, revealing a looming crisis.

A hidden reservoir, groundwater sustains Californians through otherwise crippling droughts, and enables a way of life on the Great Plains. After a century of heavy use enabled by deep wells and powerful pumps, western aquifers are being drawn perilously low. As groundwater reform takes hold in California and other communities grapple with shortages, will we be able to save this resource?

At the symposium, Ian James will joined by a distinguished panel of western water experts and journalists for a conversation about the future of groundwater in the West. The event will be followed by a reception with light refreshments.

Panel Discussion, Award Presentation and Q&A Session

Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2017
Paul Brest Hall West
555 Salvatierra Walk
Stanford University
(View map: Stanford | Google)


Dawn E. Garcia, Moderator
Director, JSK Journalism Fellowships
Stanford University

Ian James
Reporter, The Desert Sun
Winner, 2016 Knight-Risser Prize for "Pumped Dry"

Felicity Barringer
Writer in Residence
Bill Lane Center for the American West
Stanford University

Leon Szeptycki
Executive Director
Water in the West Project
Stanford University

The discussion will be followed by a public reception. Please RSVP using the form below. by Wednesday, January 18.

Parking on campus is free after 4pm. View a map of walking directions from Wilbur Field Garage.


Read a summary of the January 2017 Knight Risser Prize Symposium with photos and complete audio and video here.

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Hell and High Water
Texas Tribune, ProPublica
Pumped Dry
The Desert Sun and USA Today
Big Oil, Bad Air
CPI, InsideClimate News, The Weather Channel
Sea Change
The Seattle Times
The Killing Agency
The Sacramento Bee
Perilous Passages
High Country News
Dry Times
5280 Magazine
Chain Saw Scouting
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Logging and Landslides:
What Went Wrong?
The Seattle Times
Climate Change Hits Home
San Antonio Express-News
Blighted Homeland
The Los Angeles Times
Squeezing Water from a Stone
High Country News