The Columbia Journalism Review has formally launched a department dedicated to science and environmental reporting. Curtis Brainard, who has been covering the beat at CJR, will be chief reporter. His first online article details the problems and challenges ScienceDebate 2008 faces in gaining news coverage and public attention.

From the announcement about the new CJR dept:

The Observatory will monitor science journalism-covering the coverage-with an eye toward improving the journalism and thereby improving the discourse. It will be a guide to the best and worst of science and environmental journalism; it will tell you where the press excels and makes bold innovations. And it will point out where it falls victim to spin, engages in alarmism, perpetrates false balance, misrepresents the science in peer-reviewed literature, or displays questionable priorities in news judgment.