Skip to content Skip to site navigation

Christopher Mims' Posts

Comments

Why less arctic ice means more mercury in your babies

Here is a thing I definitely would not have understood without this animation.

Comments

Why climate change is irrelevant to clean energy

Maggie Koerth-Baker, science editor at BoingBoing, has written a book, and the introduction is available free online now. Here’s the basic idea: In America at least, if we want to get anything done on clean energy, we have to divorce it from conversations about climate change.

Comments

‘Ag-gag’ rules choke off supply of livestock snuff films

Rather than deal with the inhumane, superbug-spawning conditions in factory farms, the Iowa state legislature would prefer to stifle one of activists' primary weapons of dissent, reports NPR.

Just this week, the Iowa legislature passed a bill that would make it a crime to use false pretenses to gain access to a livestock operation to engage in activities not authorized by the owner.

Comments

Frank Lloyd Wright goes solar, posthumously

Taliesin West. (Photo by Artotem.)

Taliesin West, the iconic desert home created by Frank Lloyd Wright, is about to go net-zero, which means it will produce as much energy as it consumes. It's a fitting update for a structure that was way ahead of its time.

Comments

Pro hockey player loves organic food and worms

Andrew Ference plays defense for the 2011 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins, so you'd think he'd be a meathead who mostly drinks beer and scratches his balls. But it turns out he shops with his kids at Whole Foods like all the other bobos -- not just because he likes fancy cheeses, but because he thinks eating organic gives him a performance edge on the ice. Plus, he's a vermicomposter!

Comments

New Center for PostNatural History is a museum of human influence on nature

One of the cool things about natural history museums is that they show you how nature has changed over time, adapting to volatile conditions and extreme challenges. And nothing is more volatile, extreme, or challenging than the human race, so it makes sense that there would be a museum to chronicle just how much we’ve messed with plants, animals, the climate, and in general the world around us. The Center for PostNatural History, opening this week in Pittsburgh, is that museum.

Comments

Mexico City’s urbanization threatens ancient ‘floating gardens’

A man works his plot in the chinampas of Mexico City. (Photo by Eneas De Troya.)

Chinampas, or floating gardens -- small artificial islands full of crops, built up on shallow lake beds -- once sustained the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan, producing multiple harvests every year. They still exist in Mexico City, feeding its rural citizens -- for now.

Comments

Liquid battery electric vehicle could charge in three minutes

“Flow” batteries, i.e. batteries filled with a liquid electrolyte that can be pumped out and replenished, have the potential to transform the process of charging an electric vehicle into something that more closely resembles filling it up with gas. This research is still at its earliest stages, but a battery from startup Eos Energy Storage could be drained and refilled with charged electrolyte in three minutes, the company's CEO told Katie Fehrenbacher of GigaOm.

Comments

New revelations about how Fukushima almost forced the evacuation of Tokyo

During the most dire period in the Fukushima meltdown, the president of Japanese utility company Tepco tried to evacuate all workers at the stricken reactor. If that order went through, it would have precipitated a worst-case scenario and ultimately the evacuation of Tokyo.

Comments

Peel-off solar panels could make solar competitive with coal

Ultra-thin solar cells that can be "peeled off" from larger pieces of silicon like delicious fruit roll-ups could be the key to making solar competitive with coal, say researchers at MIT.