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Thanks a ton! Plus, more mortifying Grist staff photos

Click to embiggen (and embarrass).
Click to embiggen (and embarrass).

Dearest readers,

Thanks for making this the best quinceañera a green news organization could ask for.

With your help, Grist celebrated our 15th birthday by raising $70,000 in just 15 days.

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It’s not too late to support Grist

Amelia Bates Your gift in support of our 15th birthday will help us continue Grist’s indispensable green news and commentary for years to come. That’s something we can all celebrate. Amelia Bates

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Watch our live chat with Ernest Moniz and Gina McCarthy

Ernesto Moniz and Gina McCarthy
Reuters

[Editor's note: The chat's over, but you can watch a replay of the conversation below.]

Starting at 10:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m. ET, Grist will be hosting a discussion with Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy about President Obama's climate change initiatives. Grist reporter Ben Adler will be moderating and asking the best questions from readers. Submit your questions in comments below or via Twitter with the hashtag #WHClimateChat.

And then watch the White House Google+ Hangout right here:

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The big ask

What are your climate questions for Ernest Moniz and Gina McCarthy?

Ernest Moniz and Gina McCarthy
Reuters

President Obama is talking more and more about climate change these days -- and he's sending two top administration officials to answer your questions about it.

Grist will be moderating a live video chat with Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy on Monday, May 19, at 10:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m. ET. Submit your questions ahead of time in the comments below, or via Twitter with the hashtag #WHClimateChat. Then tune in on Monday to watch the live chat right here at Grist or on the White House Google+ page.

What has Obama been saying and doing on climate change lately? 

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It’s Getting Ha in Here: A Grist happy hour with Eugene Mirman

eugene-mirman-and-chip-giller-1600x900

Join us for a drink, a joke, and happy hour snacks with comedian Eugene Mirman. You’ll have a chance to mingle with Eugene, Grist staff, and submit any questions you have for a live exchange on sustainability — featuring Eugene and Grist founder, Chip Giller. But remember, climate change isn’t funny, except when it is.

Stop by the Palace Ballroom at 2100 Fifth Avenue in Downtown Seattle on Thursday, May 22 from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Space is limited. Registration is free. Reserve your spot today!

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Grist Test Kitchen

We drank a pitcher of green sludge so you don’t have to

mr-burns-simpsons-ambro.jpg
FOX/Eve Andrews

Welcome to the first edition of Grist Test Kitchen, where we taste green, wacky, and (hopefully) edible foodstuffs and share our flavor insights in a short video recorded on an improperly held iPhone.

The inaugural selection is Ambronite, an organic, vegan, gluten-free supermeal supplement. Hate eating? Wish you lived in a dystopian nightmare where an all-in-one slurry fed you in between battles with The Machines? Ambro's got your back, bro. Why partake in one of life's greatest pleasures when you could slurp a tall glass of almost-flavorless liquid instead for the rest of your natural life?

Similar product Soylent has been getting plenty of attention recently, but there's still a hunger for the new and improved in the sustenance-for-people-who-don't-make-time-to-eat scene. Ambronite is $7,500 away from its $50,000 Indiegogo goal with plenty of time to go. If they succeed, early backers get their packets of delicious Ambronite by September 2014.

Read more: Food, Living

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Make Me Care: If you like to eat, this carbon study is terrible news

Welcome back to Make Me Care, Grist's low-fi foray into video blogging, in which we get our writers and editors to explain why their story of the week is worth your attention. This time, casual host and editorial intern Amelia Urry welcomes Grist food writer Nathanael Johnson to talk about his article on growing food in our high-carbon future. Forget all those skeptics claiming that CO2 will keep pumping up crop yields -- new research from Harvard biologists suggests that these crops will be much lower in zinc and iron, which are essential for, er, human life.

Why should you care? Well, with not enough multivitamins to go around, we'll need more food to feed the world -- and with increased heat and droughts, it will probably be harder to grow. This should be a study even climate change deniers have a hard time turning down -- have we defeated the Flat Earth Society once and for all? Watch the video to hear more!

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Grist wants to give you this bike

grist-faraday

Some 15-year olds dream about their first car, but we’re drooling over a different set of wheels.

Donate to Grist before May 20 and you won’t just be supporting our crucial green news and advice — you could soon find yourself cruising on this Faraday Porteur electric bicycle.

If you donate now to help celebrate 15 years of Grist, you’ll automatically be entered to win!

No matter what, your donation will go toward the intelligent, irreverent green news you count on. May we suggest a gift of $15 in celebration of our birthday?

Over the years, we’ve helped change the bike conversation from mere recreation to climate solutions, with an in-depth look at how cycling helps the economy, a charming video on city-biking for beginners, and well-kept tabs on bikesharing programs across the country.

So saddle up and help us kick this fundraiser into high gear. And possibly win the most stylish electric bike on the road.

Donate now.

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Make Me Care: What’s so great about tiny houses, anyway?

Welcome to Make Me Care, a new and experimental vlog in which we try to get our writers and editors to explain why their topic du jour is worthy of your attention. In this episode, host and editorial intern Amelia Urry invites Grist fellow Eve Andrews into her (occasionally glitchy) Skype room. For the past couple of months, Eve has been writing about tiny houses by themselves, tiny houses in groups, tiny houses in love, and now tiny houses in cities.

There’s a lot to say on the topic -- but why should you care? And for all of the thousands of words on tiny houses to which Eve’s subjected us, would she actually live in one herself? Watch the video above to find out!

And if, after all that, you’re still wondering if you could or should go tiny, check out our tiny house flowchart!

Read more: Cities, Living

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Take that!

Supreme Court slaps down Big Coal

"smack!"
Shutterstock

Take that, filthy old power plants. The Supreme Court says you can't just send your pollution willy-nilly over state borders.

The New York Times reports:

In a major environmental victory for the Obama administration, the Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate the smog-causing pollution from coal-fired power plants that wafts across state lines from 27 Midwestern and Appalachian states to the East Coast.

The 6-to-2 ruling upholds a centerpiece of what has become a signature of President Obama’s environmental agenda: a series of new Clean Air Act regulations aimed at cutting pollution from coal-fired power plants. Republicans and the coal industry have criticized the effort as a “war on coal.”

More from the Associated Press: