The Times-Picayune, New Orleans' only daily newspaper, has justly been praised for the determination of its publisher and staff to keep publishing in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, which occurred one year ago. Despite having to evacuate its building, which sustained serious damage, and despite the fact that many staff members lost their own homes to Katrina's storm surge and levee breaks, the paper never missed an issue—although for the first few days, it produced only its electronic edition. The paper demonstrated the highest standards of community service.
At the 2006 Joint Assembly, AGU presented a special certificate of merit to The Times-Picayune, but it was not for the paper's post-Katrina tour de force. Rather, AGU stepped back and took note of all the paper had done to inform readers of crucial scientific and environmental issues that affect the well-being of residents of New Orleans and southern Louisiana.