Grist List

Politics

Six empty chairs that say more about the environment than Barack Obama

Last night, Clint Eastwood had a lively conversation with an empty chair that he apparently thought was Barack Obama. Grist List does not endorse candidates, but we know a lot about chairs for some reason, and frankly some of the chairs we’ve met have an environmental record that rivals the president’s. Obama should pick one of these babies as his running mate, or at least his sustainability czar.

Hurricane Katrina caused a baby dolphin boom

Hurricane Katrina was irredeemably terrible for everyone involved — except, it turns out, baby dolphins. (And presumably adult dolphins, who got to enjoy making baby dolphins.) In the years after the hurricane hit the Gulf Coast, these cuties multiplied like excuses at a BP press conference, Scientific American reports: Around two years after the hurricane struck, there was a massive increase in the number of dolphin calves observed. In other words, bottlenose dolphins living in the Mississippi sound experienced a reproductive increase during the two years following the storm. Either, they made more baby dolphins, or more baby dolphins were …

One-fifth of creepy spineless animals could disappear forever

Most species are spineless piles of goo. That’s not a value judgment: About 80 percent of the world’s species are invertebrates, which actually do lack spines. Metaphorically, though, it is we who are the spineless piles of goo, for standing by while these creatures disappear. A new report from the Zoological Society of London found that one-fifth of invertebrates “could be at risk of extinction,” the BBC reports.