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Grist List: Look what we found.


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Farmers to use spider venom to protect crops

Farmers and bugs typically have a hate-hate relationship. Insects eat up valuable wheat, barley, and soybeans, and farmers slay them dead using an arsenal of chemical weapons (a.k.a. pesticides). But no longer. Australian growers may soon form an alliance with their new best buggy friends: spiders.

Researchers at the University of Queensland’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience found that tarantula, orb spider, and funnel web spider venom actually makes a super-effective, all-natural pesticide. Not only that, but scientists envision using the earth-friendly spider venom to control agricultural pests and wipe out disease vectors like mosquitoes.

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Critical List: Obama to expedite portion of Keystone XL; World Water Day

It's World Water Day: How much do you use? (The average American household uses 350 gallons. I KNOW.)

Obama is set to expedite the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline.

The Supreme Court decided that the couple who wants to fight the EPA over whether their property counts as a wetland can go ahead and fight the EPA.

Is that climate change in your Hunger Games?

Read more: Uncategorized

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Plane commutes on the rise

An increasing number of people are commuting to New York jobs from hundreds of miles away or even the other side of the country, according to WNYC's Transportation Nation. There are about 4,000 regular plane commuters, accounting for more than 1,000 tons of carbon every week. Has nobody told these people about the internet?

Read more: Sprawl

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A science experiment run by gnomes

A company that makes scales for scientific use has demonstrated slight variations in Earth's gravitational pull at the surface, in what may the first science experiment to use garden gnomes as instrumentation.

Read more: Living

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EPA: ‘This water is fine, apart from all the methane’

A press release from the Environmental Protection Agency said that Dimock, Pa., had safe drinking water in spite of fracking. But independent testing found dangerous levels of methane. What gives?

Read more: Natural Gas

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Earth Day too committed for you? Celebrate Earth Hour instead


Budget cuts are hitting everybody hard these days. Earth Day used to get a whole damn day, and now it's getting cut back to Earth Hour? What's next, Earth Nanosecond? I know the news cycle is getting faster each day, but this is ri-goddamn-diculous.

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Robot jellyfish will use water for fuel, spy on you

A team working out of Virginia Tech and the University of Texas at Dallas is building a robotic jellyfish that mimics the real thing. Here it is in action:

The robot gets its power from hydrogen and oxygenate, which reacts with platinum to create heat, driving the jellyfish's "muscles." One day, the jellyfish won't even need to come with a separate fuel source, Discovery News reports:

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Behold H&M’s new green collection

H&M's business model -- selling cheap clothes that either disintegrate or fall out of fashion quickly -- doesn't exactly fit into the "buy less stuff" model of sustainability. But they're still trying to sell eco-consciousness, in the form of "bonded recycled polyester," which usually serves as jacket lining, apparently.


This one's probably the cutest of the bunch, but we are afraid of what "bonded recycled polyester" feels like up close.

Thanks to pressure from groups like Greenpeace, the company is working to pollute less and recycle more. Check out a few of the dresses from the 2012 H&M Conscious "Glamour" collection but before you click buy, ask yourself is "Would I buy this nonsense at all if it didn't have an eco-friendly halo around it?"

Read more: Living

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Human wings: The green answer to air travel

Forget subways, trains, and bikes -- those are old hat compared to what we’re about to tell you. Meet the new green form of transportation: strapping on human bird wings and flying through the air with the greatest of ease.

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Critical List: Tariffs for imported Chinese solar panels; Obama to visit solar facility

The Department of Commerce announced that China was selling solar panels at unfairly low prices in the U.S. and that it would slap tariffs on them.

Obama's on an "all-of-the-above" energy tour today: He'll stop at a solar facility and at oil and gas fields.

The New York Times reported Sunday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture would require environmental reviews of properties with oil and gas leases before issuing mortgages to them, but now the secretary of ag is saying that the department will do nothing of the sort.

The National Bike Summit is underway. Go with other bikers to harangue your congressperson about public transportation funding!

Read more: Uncategorized