Joel Bourne Jr.
Joel K. Bourne Jr. is an award-winning journalist who has covered national and international environmental issues for the past 20 years. A former senior editor for the environment for National Geographic, he has reported on numerous controversial issues, including oil exploration in Alaska, the future of New Orleans, the global food crisis, and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Bourne seems to have a pulse on breaking news. His 2004 National Geographic feature on Louisiana’s wetland loss reported the hurricane threat to New Orleans ten months before Hurricane Katrina devastated the city. His October 2007 article on biofuels was part of a suite of stories that won the magazine top honors for Outstanding Explanatory Reporting from the Society of Environmental Journalists in 2008, and his ongoing coverage of food sourcing and sustainability echo the wave of pop culture films and books about this increasingly important topic.
A powerful and trusted voice in the media, Bourne, who holds a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy from NC State and a Master’s in Journalism from Columbia University, has appeared on numerous television and radio programs, including CNN‘s American Morning, CNN International, the National Geographic Channel and NPR. Prior to his tenure at National Geographic, Bourne’s work appeared in National Geographic Adventure, National Geographic Traveler, Audubon, Science, Outside and many other publications.
His first book, The End of Plenty: The Race to Feed a Crowded World was released in the summer of 2015.
There are more than a billion people on the planet today that do not have enough to eat—more than at any other time in human history. Join Bourne as he explores some of the brightest ideas being considered in response to this crisis.
In the future experts believe wars will fought not over oil or ideologies, but over something much more critical to human life: water. For more than a decade Bourne has reported on the increasingly dire quest for fresh water, from the parched soils of subSaharan Africa, to China’s Pearl River Delta, to California's Central Valley.