The recent clashes may be drawing the attention of more reporters, however. Now that her piece about wilderness protection is done, Eilperin is working on a piece for the Post about Obama’s record on offshore conservation. “I’ve been tracking how National Ocean Policy has gone from a wonky issue to a political flash point for several months,” she said in an interview, “and it speaks to how polarized national environmental policy has become.”

As Eilperin wrote in her piece earlier this week, the president’s “record remains largely unwritten,” but that’s not only because he might have four years left in office. It also has a more literal meaning—one which journalists need to correct.

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Curtis Brainard is the editor of The Observatory, CJR's online critique of science and environment reporting. Follow him on Twitter @cbrainard.