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A Narwhal reader in the world

In our latest newsletter, we're all about celebrating our readers, especially the ones that bring us the scoops

I know, I know, you hear it from us all the time: When I think back to where we were just three years ago … just two years ago … just last year… 

But as one of the founders of The Narwhal, I can’t help but reflect on how much we’ve grown over the last little while and what that growth has allowed us to accomplish.

Over the last year we have added 14 new staff positions at ye ol’ Narwhal. FOURTEEN! (Four of those are special new reveals coming up soon so keep your eyes peeled.)

As I write this, two of our four OG Narwhals are on leave: one writing a book (we miss you Sarah!) and one with a two-day-old baby (congrats Sharon!!). And yet, back at homebase we still have an absolutely bustling pod of Narwhals working their tusks off to cover important stories.

We’ve got in-depth explanatory coverage of Canada’s recent decision to approve Newfoundland’s first-ever deepwater oil and gas drilling project; the B.C. story of a small mining-turned-arts town facing the prospect of another gold-mining boom; an in-the-forest look at what it means to spray pesticides from the sky; a profile on Ontario Liberal Party Leader Steven Del Duca, Doug Ford’s number one challenger in the upcoming election; a peek under the hood of the Ontario NDP’s climate plans and even a primer on what Ontario’s pending decision to open 10,000 acres of farmland to development means for growers and carbon sinks across the Peel Region.

But as you’ve likely noticed, our growing Narwhal pod means more than just great stories. It means we’re able to support programs like our 2022 BIPOC photojournalism fellowship, launch beeeeaaautiful print products like this year’s print edition and join as guests on podcasts and radio programs around the country like CANADALANDThe Big Story and even On Point with Alex Pierson

It means other things too: in a couple of weeks I’ll be heading off for a few months to welcome my own brand-new little soul into the world. Knowing the team we’ve assembled will keep The Narwhal swimming while I’m away means a lot more than I can easily express here. But I can tell you in this special moment, the gratitude I feel toward our readers, our newsletter subscribers and especially our members runs so incredibly deep.

It feels important to give that thanks, because we hear so much gratitude from you! And that also gives me great comfort and hope, because I depart knowing our newest members are sending in messages like these to the team:

“Best source of news available.”

“I am committed to true reconciliation with Indigenous People and The Narwhal is leading the way.”

“I want more independent media helping communities come together to solve problems.”

“I believe your work is the most important work of our times.”

“I want to support climate reporting as an essential piece of responding to our climate emergency.”

“I want to support the unbiased reporting especially by a bunch of interesting women!”

Thank you and remember: a gathering of Narwhals is actually called a blessing,

Carol Linnitt
Executive editor

A man with long reddish-brown hair and a beard smiling widely
Eddie Petryshen. Photo: Supplied

A Narwhal reader in the world

You may already know this but readers of The Narwhal are pretty rad.

In addition to being our grand, beloved audience, our readers are also backcountry expeditioners, intrepid researchers, nerdy scientists and experts of all varieties. Many of you are also highly valuable sources and givers of great scoops. 

Right now we’re feeling grateful to Narwhal reader Eddie Petryshen, a conservation specialist with the environmental advocacy organization Wildsight. A few months ago Eddie reached out to The Narwhal after poring over detailed satellite imagery that showed B.C. approved new cutblocks in the critical habitat of the endangered Columbia North caribou herd. It was a shock for Eddie to see because, amidst caribou herds that are blinking out across the province, this herd is widely considered to be the Kootenay-area population with the highest chance of persisting in the long term. But it’s anyone’s guess how long that will be the case if new logging is being allowed to destroy the herd’s winter range that is supposed to be protected. 

Eddie’s tip led to an in-depth feature from journalist Judith Lavoie that looks at the loopholes allowing logging companies to nibble away at the remaining habitat of once-abundant caribou now teetering on the brink of extinction.

Thanks for the great scoop, Eddie! 

This week in The Narwhal

Steven Del Duca once halted Highway 413. But is the Ontario Liberal leader a climate visionary?

Steven Del Duca leans on a log in a brightly lit forest, smiling slightly.

By Emma McIntosh

Del Duca is Doug Ford’s main challenger in the upcoming election. While his supporters say he stands up to industry, he still doesn’t have an environment plan — or a seat. Read more.

Canada in deepwater: behind the Trudeau government’s approval of the Bay du Nord offshore oil development

Offshore supply vessel leaves St. John's harbour; Bay du Nord

By Elaine Anselmi

Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault greenlit Newfoundland’s first deepwater oil and gas development project. Questions remain about how that decision was made. Read more.

Spraying herbicides from helicopters? Concerns mount over plans for southern B.C. forests

Angelina Hopkins Rose looks at a salmonberry bush at Mundy Lake Park in Coquitlam, B.C.

By Ainslie Cruickshank

To the forestry industry these plants are pests, but for berry pickers they are important foods and medicine. Read more.

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The Narwhal’s Ontario bureau is telling stories you won’t find anywhere else. Keep up with the latest scoops by signing up for a weekly dose of our independent journalism.