SINGAPORE—David Fogarty, the former Asia climate change correspondent at Reuters, has rolled out a new consultancy that focuses on environmental communications.
Fogarty launched the firm, Falling Apples, after ending his 19-year career with Reuters. For much of that time, the Australian was based in Singapore, focusing on science and climate change.
He told the Holmes Report that his firm will advise companies on environmental issues and policies that might affect them, and "build stories around issues and products that have a strong environmental elements."
For example, Falling Apples has begun working for Double Helix Tracking Technologies, a Singapore company that uses DNA testing to verify the authenticity of timber supply chains.
In addition, Falling Apples is also helping to develop a global media strategy for the Climate and Land Use Alliance, an co-operative effort of four US foundations that is focused on fighting deforestation and improving the rights of indigenous peoples and rural communities in Indonesia, Brazil, Mexico and Central America.
Fogarty's decision to leave Reuters, he said, was because the media organisation began to "downgrade climate change coverage." During his time at Reuters, he led a number of investigative reports into palm oil corruption in Indonesia, including a firm that illegally cleared a large area of peat swamp, as well as timber concession kickbacks in Sabah involving senior officials, timber barons and international banks UBS and HSBC.
He also noted that he would not specifically pursue work for private sector commodities players that may be aiming to improve their sustainability efforts. "The biggest issue has always been that these companies have made a lot of sweeping statements about good intentions but they’ve never really followed through."