Brendan Rivers

Reporter

Credit Bonnie Zerr / WJCT

Reporter Brendan Rivers joined WJCT News in August of 2018 after several years as a reporter and then News Director at Southern Stone Communications, which owns and operates several radio stations in the Daytona Beach area.

Originally from Clifton Park, New York, Brendan moved to Florida in high school. He has a bachelor's degree in music from New College of Florida and an associate's degree in music production and technology from Daytona State College.

Brendan originally planned to pursue a career as a composer, arranger, music producer and recording engineer, but an internship at WGCU, the NPR and PBS member station in Fort Myers, convinced him he belongs in broadcasting and public media.

Brendan is the lead reporter for ADAPT, WJCT’s digital magazine exploring how Northeast Florida is adapting to sea level rise and other effects of climate change. He also hosts the ADAPT podcast.

Brendan's bylines include NPR, The Guardian, InsideClimate News, Living On Earth, The Miami Herald, The Florida Times-Union and Folio Weekly. He is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists and a former fellow with InsideClimate News and Climate Matters in the Newsroom.

Brendan Rivers can be reached at brivers@wjct.org, 904-358-6396 or on Twitter at @BrendanRivers.

JEA's downtown Jacksonville headquarters.
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News


A new report from the Sierra Club on utility climate pledges gives JEA an F grade for its climate goal.

School Board building exterior
Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

The Duval County Public Schools (DCPS) board chair is calling on Gov. Ron DeSantis to make teachers and other school workers a priority in the next phase of COVID-19 vaccine distribution.

Residents make their way across a flooded street after Hurricane Irma brought floodwaters to Jacksonville on Monday, Sept. 11, 2017.
John Raoux / Associated Press

The Jacksonville City Council’s Special Committee on Resiliency is getting close to wrapping up its work as members are scheduled to vote on and finalize recommendations during their next meeting.

John Raoux / Associated Press


The Northeast Florida Regional Council, along with five other regional planning councils from across Florida, are getting $1.49 million to develop a statewide approach to flood planning.

A man wades through flood water as he check out damage from Hurricane Matthew Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, in St. Augustine , Fla.
John Bazemore / Associated Press

The city of St. Augustine has named Jessica Beach as its Chief Resilience Officer.

A man vaping
Lindsay Fox / Wikimedia Commons

The city of Jacksonville is partnering with the convenience store chain Daily’s on a new public awareness campaign that aims to keep teenagers from vaping.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody
Steve Cannon / Associated Press

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody is warning residents to be on the lookout for COVID-19 vaccination scams.

Wetland Preserve
North Florida Land Trust

A coalition of environmental groups, including the St. Johns Riverkeeper, has filed a federal lawsuit challenging a potentially far-reaching move by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to shift permitting authority to Florida for projects that affect wetlands.

Flagler Hospital
Flagler Health+

St. Johns County School District employees who are 65 or older can now get the COVID-19 vaccine through a new program at Flagler Health+ in St. Augustine.

Brendan Rivers / WJCT News


Jacksonville City Councilman Matt Carlucci announced Thursday that he will be running for mayor in 2023 and he tells WJCT News that addressing climate change and sea level rise would be a priority for his administration.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaking in front of the Sawgrass Village Publix in Ponte Vedra Beach.
The Office of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis


Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ announcement this month that the state is partnering with Publix Supermarkets to establish COVID-19 vaccination sites across the state follows the grocer donating $100,000 to the governor’s political committee.

File photo of a Publix store
Scott Iskowitz / Associated Press

Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the state is partnering with Publix to establish COVID-19 vaccination sites at select locations throughout Florida and on Wednesday he said that several would be in St. Johns and Flagler Counties.

The Lot J bill fails to get the 13 vote majority needed to pass.
Mike Mendenhall / The Jacksonville Daily Record

A $245.3 million taxpayer funded incentive package for Jaguars owner Shad Khan’s proposed Lot J development failed to get the support it needed from the Jacksonville City Council during Tuesday night’s meeting.

A line forms outside the Mandarin Senior Center after Jacksonville announces it will be used as a COVID-19 vaccination site.
Michelle Corum / WJCT News

The two new COVID-19 vaccination sites run by the city of Jacksonville will operate on a first-come, first-serve basis starting Monday.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry
City of Jacksonville

Two of Jacksonville’s COVID-19 testing sites are being converted into vaccination centers, Mayor Lenny Curry announced Thursday.

Ted S. Warren / Associated Press

A healthcare company with its state headquarters in Jacksonville Beach is hoping to start helping administer COVID-19 vaccines by the end of March.

Cars lined up for COVID-19 testing.
Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press


The seven-day average of new coronavirus cases is currently the highest it has ever been in both the state of Florida and Duval County.

University of North Florida sign
UNF Admissions Facebook page


The University of North Florida is planning to offer an Africana Studies program as part of its effort to meet the rising demand for courses and majors that focus on race.

Registered nurse Cynthia Banada holds a vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at Miami Jewish Health, a senior healthcare facility, Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, in Miami.
Lynne Sladky / Associated Press

The city of Jacksonville is asking for patience as the hotline to set an appointment for COVID-19 vaccinations in Duval County has been frustrating callers since it went live at 8 a.m. on Wednesday.

In this Jan. 8, 2019 file photo, former felon Desmond Meade and president of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, left, fills out a voter registration form as his wife Sheena looks on at the Supervisor of Elections office in Orlando, Fla.
John Raoux / Associated Press


Ahead of the holidays, a Florida nonprofit has paid $327,000 to clear the fines and fees of 181 ex-felons in 17 counties throughout the state.

Blue Jay Listening Room
Blue Jay Listening Room

After months of struggling to make ends meet, the owner of the Blue Jay Listening Room in Jacksonville Beach is starting to feel hopeful as a GoFundMe page launched to keep the business alive nears its $30,000 goal and Congress agrees on a stimulus package that includes $15 billion to support independent music venues like hers. 

Regency Mall coronavirus testing site
Nomi Health

As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise in Jacksonville and across the state of Florida, residents are being encouraged to take advantage of free testing, especially before exposing themselves to family or friends outside their household. 

Wetland Preserve
North Florida Land Trust


The Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday it is handing over at least some of its oversight of Florida’s wetlands to the state.

Downtown Jacksonville
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News


People who live or work in Downtown Jacksonville are being asked to take a survey on what the experience is like.

COVID-19 vaccine arrives at Naval Hospital Jacksonville on Dec. 15.
Yan Kennon / Naval Hospital Jacksonville

Naval Hospital Jacksonville has received an initial supply of COVID-19 vaccines.

Mayor Lenny Curry adjusting his mask, someone to his left staring at him, signs in the background, courthouse also in the background.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

In a letter sent Thursday, Resilient Jax simultaneously thanked Mayor Lenny Curry for supporting the hiring of a chief resilience officer and criticized him for opposing the establishment of a resiliency division within the city’s Planning and Development Department.

Welaka Forest
North Florida Land Trust

A 716 acre conservation easement in Putnam County has been donated to the North Florida Land Trust, the largest conservation easement donation the nonprofit has received within the Ocala to Osceola Wildlife Corridor.

This rendering illustrates a portion of the proposed Lot J Live! entertainment complex.
Jacksonville Jaguars / Via Jacksonville Daily Record

Jacksonville City Council President Tommy Hazouri has decided to temporarily stall Jaguars owner Shad Khan’s proposed $457 million Lot J development, despite pressure from the developer and Mayor Lenny Curry’s administration.

That comes after the city’s Downtown Investment Authority voted unanimously on Wednesday night to recommend that the City Council approve the deal — which includes more than $230 million in city investments — with some changes.

Lot J rendering
The Cordish Companies / Via Jacksonville Jaguars

The DIA board voted Wednesday night to recommend that the City Council approve Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan’s proposed Lot J development with some recommended changes to the deal. The developer also agreed to some concessions." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

This rendering illustrates a portion of the proposed Lot J Live! entertainment complex.
Jacksonville Jaguars / Via Jacksonville Daily Record

Jacksonville’s Downtown Investment Authority has released its final staff report on Jaguars owner Shad Khan’s proposed $450 Lot J development project, which recommends approval with certain conditions.

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