Jess Zimmerman

Jess Zimmerman was the editor of Grist List.

How to explain climate change to Joe Sixpack

(click to embiggen) Look, not everyone's motivated by the threat of extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and threatened habitats. But nobody likes warm beer. Use this chart to put climate change in perspective for the beer guzzler in your life. (Note: Will not work in Britain.)

Top 10 greenest states — how does yours stack up?

Vermont New York Washington Oregon Minnesota California Nevada New Hampshire Massachusetts Maine Hmm … based on this, we're going to go ahead and say that if you want a green state, the best possible location is the middle of the alphabet. Beyond that, any surprises here? Vermont has "green" right in the name (albeit in French), so that hardly seems fair. But Nevada? If you're going to have one city built on the concept of spectacular waste, I guess it really helps to have low population density outside of that. Check out the rest of the rankings at Greenopia — …

Half-naked college students protest coal

Oh, college students.They'll use just about anything as an excuse to take off their clothes. We'll give them this one, though, because this bunch of barely-legals is stripping down for a good cause: Raising awareness about the harm coal mining — and coal-powered universities — can do to the environment. The anti-coal undies were designed by organic-clothing designer PACT, and 10 percent of the proceeds goes to helping the Sierra Club find coal-free solutions. The boys and girls gone wild were provided by the Sierra Club Student Coalition. Hey, it works for PETA.

Lobster golf balls: Possibly the most bourgeois green solution ever

Finally, researchers have come up with a biodegradable golf ball for use on cruise ships! So when you knock your ball off your GIANT ENERGY HOG FLOATING CITY, it will only brain a dolphin, not collect on the bottom of the ocean. Earth: saved! The balls are made out of lobster shells, so that after you take off your linen bib and leave the captain’s table, you can put on your plus-fours and repair to the Lido Deck to hit the remains of your meal into the sea. Other upcoming recycling projects include an all-natural massage chair for your island …

Are the Kochs to blame for gas prices?

Remember when we said that, despite an upcoming Republican onslaught of not-intended-to-be-factual statements, Obama is not to blame for high gas prices? Well, guess who is? Maybe Koch Industries, according to ThinkProgress. Koch Industries has openly speculated in "contango" oil market manipulation, buying up crude oil and storing it offshore to artificially drive down supply. In 2008, Fortune magazine wrote that this sneaky business could be raising gas prices by "by anywhere from 20 to 40 cents a gallon." Classic Koch. ThinkProgress doesn't offer any evidence that a Koch binge is the reason behind our current oil prices. There's so …

Modernist urban farm makes veggies sexy

Not what you think of when you hear "cube farm," is it? This awesome urban farm is the vegetable equivalent of lobster tanks in a seafood place. It's set up outside a restaurant in Tokyo's Roppongi district, and the veggies grown here are served inside. Another view below the fold: This one solves the mystery of how you get up to the second level — it looks like there are pull-down ladders on top of the cubes.

Even Osama bin Laden thinks we need to do something about climate change

You’d think people who are willing to blow themselves up any day now wouldn’t worry too hard about the future of the planet. But as it turns out, it really isn’t possible to get MORE cynical about the future than a congressional Republican — even if you’re an Islamic militant. Last October, Hezbollah guerilla chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah told reporters that "the climate threat today is among the biggest threats faced by mankind in (terms of) its peace, security, stability and existence," Reuters reported after Nasrallah attended a tree-planting event in Lebanon. When massive floods inundated Pakistan last year, Osama …

Quote of the day: Obama on America’s future

"A 70% cut to clean energy. A 25% cut in education. A 30% cut in transportation. Cuts in college Pell Grants that will grow to more than $1,000 per year. That's what they're proposing. These aren't the kind of cuts you make when you're trying to get rid of some waste or find extra savings in the budget. These aren't the kind of cuts that Republicans and Democrats on the Fiscal Commission proposed. These are the kind of cuts that tell us we can't afford the America we believe in. And they paint a vision of our future that's deeply …

Military miracle turns fuel exhaust into water

Man, if there's two things you don't have enough of when you're deployed in the desert and insurgents keep blowing up your fuel runs, it's beer and Wii. Wait no, it's diesel and water. Luckily researchers have devised a way for soldiers to turn one into the other. Membranes full of tiny tubes condense vehicle and generator exhaust, turning the vapor into liquid water and stripping contaminants along the way. The average soldier needs about seven gallons of water a day — for drinking, but also for cooking and bathing and so forth. This new tech could make that amount …

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