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Grist List: Look what we found.



Chair-dance-worthy indie rock video explains why plastics don’t have to suck

It's like Threadless and the Arcade Fire teamed up with BASF to talk about green chemistry and the threat of peak oil.


People sitting in warm rooms are more likely to believe in global warming

All this time we’ve been trying to make the public understand climate change using science and logic, and it turns out we could have just made everyone wear sweaters. People's beliefs about climate change are closely tied to the temperature they've recently experienced -- so much so that, as Justin Gillis of the New York Times explains, people sitting in warmer rooms are more likely to say that global warming is a problem:

Some people answered the questions in a cubicle at a normal room temperature, and some in a cubicle that had been heated up 10 degrees with a space heater. Amazingly, the experience of being hot caused people to be more likely to say that global warming was a problem, even when logic should have told them the temperature inside a building has nothing whatsoever to do with the climate.

Read more: Climate Change


Critical List: New rules for fracking’s air pollution; prehistoric microbes live

Natural gas companies have to work on sending less methane and other hazardous compounds into the air, according to new EPA rules.

The House passed that new Keystone XL provision.

Oregon towns on the coast are toying with the idea of becoming major coal export ports. But it's maaaaybe not the best idea.

Read more: Uncategorized


Kangaroo genitals are weirder than you ever thought possible

Photo by Pierre Pouliquin.

Animal lovers, listen up: I know critters are cute and everything, but you should know that nature is fucking weird. And nothing fucks weirder than kangaroos.

Science blogger to the stars Ed Yong watched a documentary about 'roo junk so you don't have to, and here's what you need to know:

  • Kangaroos have three vaginas. The outside two are for sperm and lead to two uteruses. The middle one is for giving birth.
Read more: Animals


Forest service to explode frozen cows

Last fall, cows that were grazing on federal land in Colorado took refuge in a cabin, then froze to death or were trapped by cows' general inability to figure out how to exit things, reports the AP. Now their carcasses are 1,000-pound blocks of frozen meat, and rangers aren't sure how to dislodge them.

So they’re going to blow them up.

Read more: Animals


America could power a city on all the small-scale hydroelectric power we’re not harvesting

Every year, America misses out on 1.2 million megawatt-hours of electricity, enough to power a small city. Where's it all going? Literally, it's being flushed down the drain.

With the right kind of technology, we could harvest the energy of water running downhill through America's infrastructure, including canals, tunnels, pipelines, and existing dams, reports Susan Kraemer at Earth Techling.

The key is "micro-hydropower" devices, which can harvest small amounts of water power. For human-made waterways, there's Hydrovolts "Big Canal Turbine."


Badass enclosed, untippable electric motorcycle is the ultimate green transport

It goes 200 miles on a third as much battery power as an electric car. It has airbags and an enclosed cockpit. It's gyroscopically stabilized, like a Segway.

It could be the future of transportation.


Biker uses GPS to turn city into an Etch-a-Sketch

Michael J. Wallace may start his bike rides in Baltimore, but he ends them on the moon, on a basketball court, or in the mouth of a dragon. He uses the streets of the city as a canvas, sketching out surprisingly detailed images by recording his progress with his phone's GPS and a tracking program.

Read more: Biking, Cities


Cleantech spending drops 75 percent in five years

A new paper from Brookings, the World Resources Institute, and the Breakthrough Institute shows exactly how much trouble cleantech is in:

Depressing, no? Some of that rapid decline comes from the end of stimulus spending. But the researchers found that even discounting those funds, federal support for cleantech dropped 47 percent between 2011 and 2012.

Read more: Cleantech