Jonathan Hiskes

Jonathan Hiskes is a writer in Seattle and a former Grist staff reporter. Find him at and on Twitter.

The best fest? Yest.

Free local cheese, a win-win-win

Jeff Maurone via Flickr.If you were anywhere near Seattle this weekend and you didn’t make it to the Seattle Cheese Festival, oh man, I’m sorry. Oh man. Pike Place Market, a sample-lover’s paradise on any day, played host to more than 200 artisanal cheesemakers for the weekend. Each brought some fine creations and each offered samples with extreme generosity. There were goat cheeses, sheep cheeses, and dairy cheeses, of just about every form imaginable. There were farmers from around the Northwest, and around the world, willing to talk about their methods and the diet of their animals. As an enthusiastic …

cop a flight

Tips for flying to the Copenhagen climate conference

Cop a ride to COP-15…Photo illustration by Tom Twigg / GristSo you’re going to Copenhagen to help save the planet. Splendid! This December the city will host the United Nations Climate Change Conference, where international delegates will negotiate a post-Kyoto Protocol global climate plan. That’s the hope, anyway. Earlier we posted some tips and ideas for finding lodging the in Danish capital, but what about getting there? Jet travel emits a tremendous amount of carbon dioxide, of course. And for non-European attendees, it’s pretty much the only option. So what’s a delegate/activist/NGO rep/journalist/gadfly to do? Erik Nelson of environmental travel …

Class, president

Obama addresses sustainability grads and others at Arizona State

Not everyone had a close-up viewdr. coop via FlickrOn Wednesday night, President Barack Obama gave a commencement address to graduates of Arizona State University, the first school in the nation to offer degrees from a dedicated sustainability program. One student from the School of Sustainability graduated last fall, but the first real class of 13 graduated this week. Here’s what Obama had to say about the nation’s challenges: It is clear that we need to build a new foundation — a stronger foundation — for our economy and our prosperity, rethinking how we educate our children, and care for our …

It's not easy dating green

Meet your eco-mate with Planet Earth Singles

Three weeks, max.planetearthsingles.comAt last, there is a green-friendly dating site for environmentally, socially and spiritually conscious singles! Not making this up: Types of Dating: • Earth Dating• Eco-Friendly Dating• Conscious Dating• Vegetarian Dating• Vegan Dating• Raw Foods Dating• Environmentally Conscious Dating• Eco Conscious Dating• Yoga Dating• Animal Rights Dating• Conscious Single Dating• Planet Earth Dating If you can tell us what the hell any of these mean, we should, you know, maybe get coffee or something sometime.

Gloom and/or Doom

Report: Climate change will bring big problems for small number of countries

Here’s one way to break down the effects of fiercer storm surges that will be wrought by climate change: Most land lost: Latin America Most people displaced: Middle East and North Africa Most economic losses: East Asia World Bank economists reached these conclusions in a new draft report [PDF] that assesses the effects sea-level rise and more intense storms are likely to have if climate change continues unchecked. The report, by the researchers on the World Bank’s Energy and Environment team, combined climate prediction models with information on coastal population, coastal GDP, wetlands, agricultural lands, and other factors. Like other …

A Moranic Idea

Memo: Climate change denier wants to give you instant on-air ‘balance’

Marc Morano: Willing to help you out.Heartland Institute Say you’re a harried cable news producer with 24 gaping hours to fill with finished material every day of the week. Say you’re constantly in need of articulate guests to offer a diversity of viewpoints. How do you do it? One way is to take up offers like this one from the PR folks representing Marc Morano. Refresher: Morano was formerly an aid to climate-change-denier-in-chief James Inhofe (GOP senator from Oklahoma), now heads misinformation clearinghouse, and is still the chief supplier of talking points to the climate-denial camp. Here’s the PR …

Tax away, eh?

Carbon tax gets big nod from voters in B.C. election

British Columbia held its provincial election yesterday, with the province’s carbon tax playing a big role–and coming out a big winner. Aside from the economy, probably no issue was more important than the ruling Liberal Party’s climate plan, passed last summer and subsequently the opposition New Democratic Party’s (NDP) centerpiece campaign issue. A carbon tax backlash failed to unseat British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell in the province’s May 12 elections.Image courtesy Liberal Party of British ColumbiaThe Liberals won, leading in some 48 district races and giving Premier Gordon Campbell a third consecutive majority government. That should ensure the survival of …

Swim for it!

Selling out the polar bears … or smart climate politics?

In upholding the Bush-era decision on polar bears, is Obama shrewdly pushing a larger climate agenda?iStock PhotoThe Obama administration will uphold a controversial Bush-era decision that limits protection for polar bears under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced today. Polar bears will continue to be considered a threatened species because their arctic habitat is melting due to climate change. The decision essentially means ESA protections cannot apply to oil exploration and greenhouse gas emissions originating outside of the Arctic-—the main threats to the bears’ habitat. For environmentalists, the decision means another disappointment from Salazar, a Coloradan …

Save us from our emissions

New religious coalition seeks climate ‘redemption’ via carbon plan

Joel Hunter, important pastor.Dr. Joel Hunter, reputedly one of President Obama’s five favorit-est pastors, might have just gotten even more favorit-er. The Florida megachurch pastor stars in a blitz of new ads on Christian radio stations intended to raise support for a climate bill like the one under consideration in the U.S. House. Hunter, a registered Republican, draws squarely on religious language in the 60-second spots (listen here): As our seas rise, crops wither, and rivers run dry, God’s creation cries out for relief. The failure to answer the calling to be good stewards has consequences. The destabilizing effect of …

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