Business & Technology

Industrial Agriculture

Big Ag doesn’t want you to care about pesticides

Power to the people pesticide industry!The produce lobby is livid that consumers might be concerned about pesticides. They are taking their fury out on the USDA for its annual report on pesticide use (via The Washington Post): In a recent …

Biofuel

Some biofuels worse than dirtiest fossil fuels

If you fuel your truck with biodiesel made from palm oil grown on a patch of cleared rainforest, you could be putting into the atmosphere 10 times more greenhouse gasses than if you’d used conventional fossil fuels. It's a scenario …

Green Jobs

The untimely death of a green-collar job trainee — and one graduate’s triumph

Family photo: Lawrence Albert “Jahon” Craig Gadlin with his partner, Latina Cash, and son, Jahon Jr.Lawrence Albert “Jahon” Craig Gadlin, a 23-year-old father in Richmond, Calif., was outside repairing a car with friends on May 13, 2010, when a red …

Climate & Energy

Today in ‘you should pay more attention to utilities’ news

This woman is paying attention. Are you?For decades, electric utilities in the U.S. have mostly been barriers to progress on clean air and clean energy. This mainly has to do with the perverse way they are regulated, which ties their …

Oil

Keystone pipeline spilled tar-sands oil 11 times in past year. Do we really want to supersize it?

The routes of the existing and proposed Keystone pipelines. Image: RL MillerThe State Department is currently weighing whether to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry tar-sands oil some 2,000 miles southward, from Alberta, Canada, to Houston and Port …

Sustainable Farming

Factory farms the only way to ‘feed the world’? Not so, argues Science paper

To “feed the world” by 2050, we’ll need a massive, global ramp-up of industrial-scale, corporate-led agriculture. At least that’s the conventional wisdom. Even progressive journalists trumpet the idea (see here, here, and here, plus my ripostes here and here). The …

Climate & Energy

Bill Gates’ blind spots

So right, and yet so not-quite-rightPhoto: Suzie KatzWhen Bill Gates first jumped into the energy discussion with a big TED talk, I wrote a post called “Why Bill Gates is wrong.” In retrospect, I should have been a bit more …

Business & Technology

Charge your phone by yelling at it

As if cell phones don't already encourage enough annoying, disruptive public noise, researchers at Sungkyunkwan University in Seoul have developed a phone battery that you charge by yelling at it. The battery has zinc oxide wires running between two electrodes; …

Animals

Critical List: Biofuels kinda suck, biomass kinda sucks, Toys ‘R’ Us embraces solar

The Fish and Wildlife Service has promised to evaluate the endangered status of 251 species in the next six years, if only so those pesky enviros will be quiet for a bit. The country's largest rooftop solar-energy field will be …