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Grist List: Look what we found.


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Mexico City’s giant landfill will power 35,000 homes

Mexico City just shut down its enormous Bordo Poniente landfill, which has received 79 million tons of garbage on its 927 acres since 1994. But they’re not just leaving all that rotting organic matter to, well, rot. Instead, the city open a landfill gas power plant, which should be able to power 35,000 homes at its peak, reports Elizabeth Malkin in the New York Times.

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Peter Gleick: Hero or moral moron?

Yesterday evening, water researcher and Pacific Institute Director Peter Gleick came forward to say that it was he who had first obtained the documents revealing the inner workings of the climate-denying Heartland Institute. Gleick admitted that he had obtained most of the documents using a false identity. This morning, the climate community has exploded with judgments, positive and negative, of Gleick's actions. Was he Goofus or Gallant? Here's a sampling of arguments on either side.

First, Gleick's own assessment of his decision. In his post, he called it "a serious lapse of my own and professional judgment and ethics." He also apologized "to all those affected."

Heartland, of course, isn't about to praise his actions. The institute's president wrote to reporters that "Gleick’s crime was a serious one … A mere apology is not enough to undo the damage.” (We know political hypocrisy is getting so commonplace as to be boring, so we’ll just say “cough cough Climategate.”)

Plenty of climate thinkers jumped to Gleick's defense, though.

Read more: Politics

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Santorum campaign can’t tell the difference between environmentalism and Islam

Rick Santorum said this weekend that President Obama believed in a "phony theology," sparking concerns that he was publicly denying that the president is a Christian. Of course we're talking about the guy who thinks mainline Protestants aren't really Christian, so this would hardly be a surprise, but there's been so much ugliness surrounding the subject of Obama's religion that these would clearly be fightin' words. Which explains why Santorum press secretary Alice Stewart snapped into action, clarifying on MSNBC that Santorum was merely referring to the president's "radical Islamic policies." Oh, well. OK then.

An hour later she called back to say that she meant radical environmental policies. Man, I always get those two confused! 

Read more: Election 2012

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Critical List: Heartland documents obtained using deception; killer whales OK with climate change

Peter Gleick, a water expert and climate scientist, says he obtained documents that revealed the inner workings of the Heartland Institute by soliciting them from the group under someone else's name.

A new study says that exploiting Canada's tar sands might not exacerbate climate change as much as environmental groups fear.

Mexico and the U.S. are going to work together on offshore oil drilling.

Read more: Uncategorized

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Newest anti-Keystone activists: Tea Partiers

If there's anything the Tea Party hates, it's whatever the government is doing right now. Which means greens have picked up some unusual allies in the fight against the Keystone XL pipeline: Texas Tea Partiers who think the project violates property rights.

“Crippling someone’s water supply knows no party line,” said Rita Beving, consultant to the bipartisan East Texas Sub-Regional Planning Commission. A Republican mayor and a Democratic city secretary lead the group’s fight against the pipeline.

Read more: Oil

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100-year-old sets cycling record

French centenarian Robert Marchand (that's not him above, we just didn't have permission to use the Reuters photo) has set a new cycling record: The furthest distance ridden in an hour in the 100-and-over category. Also, the smallest distance. Also, the first hour ride. There's not a lot of competition in this age bracket.

Read more: Biking

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Climate change threatens traditional [bird] marriage

Photo by Niklas Morberg.

Here's a reason for Republicans to finally care about climate change: It threatens straight monogamous bird marriage. According to a new study, unpredictable climates cause birds to Gingrich it up, making them more likely to play the field rather than sticking with one partner.

Read more: Animals, Climate Change

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Damien Hirst to build eco-homes, possibly full of formaldehyde

Non-artist's rendering of artist's rendering of houses in a tank

World's richest artist Damien Hirst, best known for preserved sharks and diamond-encrusted skulls and having his assistants make all his artwork, apparently owns an obscene amount of land in Ilfracombe parish, Devon, England. And he wants to use it to build a development of 500 "eco-homes." 

Read more: Green Home

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Stand by for baby eagles on webcam!

Hey, remember the Decorah Eagle Cam? If you don't, you probably never saw a baby eagle hatch on live streaming video, you poor fool. But now you have another chance! The mom eagle at the Decorah, Iowa fish hatchery is ... pregnant? Do birds get "pregnant"? Anyway, let's say she has a frittata in the oven. And she's going to lay those eggs any day now, at which point you can begin obsessively monitoring them for signs of wee tiny eaglets.

Read more: Animals

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One weird old trick for population control: Aspirin

You may have heard that Rick Santorum financial backer Foster Friess proposed one weird old trick for birth control: an aspirin between the knees. (If you don't get it, try holding an aspirin between your knees, and then imagine that you only knew one sex position and it was missionary.) We found some file photos of Friess explaining his theory, which he put forth on MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Reports.

Read more: Politics, Population, Sex