Report Local—Issue No. 13

Report for America corps members are publishing new stories across the U.S. every day. Report Local is a weekly round-up of some of those stories and new developments in our program. 

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Rafael René Díaz Torres, a geography professor turned journalist, leverages his research skills to investigate the doings of the Puerto Rico federal and local government. 

As a corps member and a reporter for Puerto Rico’s Centro de Periodismo Investigativo, Rafael walks us through a local beach inundated with sargassum, a type of seaweed that has blanketed coasts around the Atlantic this summer. 

Seaweed supports life under the waves, but when it makes landfall—and begins to rot—the over-abundant and water-borne plant becomes a health risk to life on land and sea, Rafael writes. He was kind enough to join us for a Q&A to discuss his experience so far as a watchdog reporter holding the government accountable for the recovery effort in the wake of Hurricane Maria.