John Upton

John Upton is a former Grist news blogger. He tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology.

Not just bad for bees: Neonic pesticides could damage babies’ brains

Two neonicotinoid pesticides that are frequently found on American produce could cause learning and memory problems in humans, European scientists warn.

Maine city gives tar-sands oil the finger

South Portland has imposed a six-month moratorium on shipping tar-sands oil through its port, and is now looking at a permanent ban.

NOAA: November was “record warm”

Combined land and sea temperatures broke through to new highs last month. We can't even blame an El Niño.

Greenpeace 30, Pussy Riot get Russian amnesty

The 28 activists and two journalists who were arrested at an offshore oil platform in the Arctic have been freed by an act of parliament, as have the two jailed members of the band Pussy Riot.

Sand-mine-happy Wisconsin mayor survives recall attempt

Frac sand, ho! The result of a recall election in a small Wisconsin town favors a Texan company that wants to mine for frac sand.

Rice seeds could save the day for Filipino typhoon victims

Another way Typhoon Haiyan sucked: it hit at rice-planting time. NGOs are now trying to help Filipino farmers avoid famine.

Pesticide makers have found a new way to kill bees

The EPA recently approved a new neonicotinoid insecticide that's toxic to pollinators. Green groups and beekeepers are suing to get that decision reversed.

Plants will reach point where they couldn’t possibly take another bite of our CO2

Vegetation sucks up some of the carbon dioxide we pump into the atmosphere, but that process could reverse as global temperatures rise.

Is the coal industry about to wreck the Great Barrier Reef?

Australia has OK'd a coal-export plan that will dredge part of the reef area and then run thousands of coal-laden ships through it.