Jess Zimmerman

Jess Zimmerman was the editor of Grist List.

Billionaire carves his name on island

Hamad bin Hamdan al Ahyan is a real-life Chairface Chippendale. He owns a private island near Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, but what fun is that if everyone doesn't know it's yours? So he wrote his name on it, in letters a third of a mile long that are visible from space.

Critical List: DeChristopher gets two years; cities are screwed by climate change

A Utah judge sentenced climate activist Tim DeChristopher to two years in prison. A few people were a bit pissed off by this, and 26 protesters were arrested. A new NRDC report concludes that cities are going to be screwed by climate change. The Department of Energy is funding a $85 million project to study carbon sequestration in an underground rock formation called Kevin's Dome. Injecting CO2 into the porous rock could be a way to store it harmlessly.

Floating hydroponic farm makes food with zero waste

Here's an urban farm we'll still be able to use when rising sea levels flood all our cities! Science Barge is a floating organic farm set aboard a barge in the Hudson river.

Here's what an hour's worth of ocean trash looks like

This artwork by Chris Jordan is made up of 2.4 million pieces of plastic, all collected from the Pacific Ocean. (You can see details here.) This is already staggering, but it's actually only a fraction of what gets pumped into the ocean every hour. If every one of these pieces were a pound of plastic, and it looked more like a garbage slurry and less like a classic Japanese print, that would be an hour's worth of plastic pollution.

Lawns are evil

The $50,000 playhouse that oil built

Ever wonder what oil executives do with all the money they make from wrecking the planet? Well, take a tour with me through the playhouse that oil exec John Schiller ($7.7 million in compensation in 2010, including a $2.6 million bonus) had built for his 4-year-old. That's an artist's conception above, not the actual blueprint, but all the features -- air conditioning, running water, fireplace, 32-inch flat-screen TV -- are for real. (The New York Times has pictures, too.)

The EPA does not want you feeding arsenic to your baby

It's only 16 months until the next election, and you know what that means: We are in the thick of political ad season. Mostly that makes everybody want to crawl under a sofa, but sometimes you get arresting ads like this one from American Family Voices.

Paper antennas pull electricity from the air

The air is full of energy -- not in a woo-woo crystal-gazing way, but in a scientific electromagnetic-radiation-from-TV-stations-and-phone-networks kind of way. That ambient energy is just being wasted. But a team from Georgia Tech is developing inkjet-printed paper antennas that could generate enough energy to power a small gadget, right out of thin air.

Painting roofs white could save a year's worth of emissions

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