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Grist List: Look what we found.


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Activists get Amazon to stop selling whale meat

Photo by cfdls.

Weird things available on Amazon.com in the U.S. include wolf urine, fresh rabbit, canned unicorndeer butt, and (fake) horse heads. But until yesterday, the company's Japanese subsidiary was selling something a lot more grisly: whale bacon, whale stew, whale jerky, and canned whale meat. Now, only a day after the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) put out a call to action to boycott Amazon, whale meat products have disappeared from the site. 

Read more: Animals, Food

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Here’s what a crowdsourced bicycle looks like

This combination bike and scooter is nominally the work of fancypants designer Philippe Starck, but that's partly because "everyone in Bordeaux, France" doesn't have as much label cachet. (More than "everyone in Normal, Illinois" or something, but still.) Before Starck got his hands on the brief for the bike, which will be part of Bordeaux's bikeshare system, the city government solicited comments from more than 300 citizens on how their ideal bike would look and function.

Read more: Biking, Cities

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Test tube burger will cost more than $331,000 to produce

Sometime later this year, a yet-to-be-named guinea pig very lucky culinary pioneer will take the first bite of the first hamburger grown in a lab. At that point, the cost of making that burger will have totaled more than $331,000 (an estimated 250,000 euros). The meat will be grown from bovine stem cells that produce muscle and fat -- and if that sounds less than appetizing, keep in mind that the burger will be prepared by famed chef Heston Blumenthal.

Read more: Food

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Ultimate tiny house is suspended 40 feet in the air

Via the Dish, this art installation in downtown San Francisco is the ultimate tiny house. It's seven by eight by 11 feet, and it's suspended 40 feet in the air. Plus, it’s recycled AND green: It's made of 100-year-old reclaimed barn wood, and powered by off-grid solar.

Among other ideas, the project is meant to communicate "a new home front in the remaining voids of San Francisco" and "the arrogance of westward expansion," according to designboom. While we now think it's awesome and perhaps necessary to inhabit tiny spaces, for pioneers, it was just practical.

Read more: Cities

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Critical List: Court upholds local fracking ban; New York could ban shark fin sales

A New York state court upheld the town of Dryden's ban on fracking.

Republicans are trying to pin rising gas prices on President Obama.

Apple could allow independent environmental reviews of two factories in China.

Chinese air pollution is visible from space.

Read more: Uncategorized

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Scientists resurrect 30,000-year-old plants — and they can still bear fruit

Man, I can barely raise a plant from a seedling without killing it, and scientists have managed to grow viable plants out of seeds from 29,000 B.C.? So unfair.

Read more: Living

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Rick Santorum rewrites the history of clean air in America

Here is a video of Rick Santorum lying about the history of clean air in America and specifically Pittsburgh.

The entire clip is full of howlers, including an applause line in which Santorum, who denies the science of climate change, says that environmentalism is "anti-science." But here's the one that grabbed me:

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Attention drunkards: Please dispose of your Mardi Gras beads in a responsible manner

Photo by Neil Cooler.

DRUNK PEOPLE OF NEW ORLEANS! We know you need that plastic flotsam in order to see some boobs, because of I guess longstanding tradition dating back to before you could see boobs on the internet without even trying. But it's basically an ecological nightmare, so if you can't find some ladies who are willing to take their tops off in exchange for tofu or offset credits or something else environmentally responsible, at least be mindful about how you dispose of your extra beads.

Read more: Living

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Smallest legal apartment in California is prefab, adorbs

If you're like me, you watch this video and think "my house is 10 times as big as this apartment and only slightly more functional," and then curse the day you moved to the suburbs.

This is the smallest studio apartment you can build in California, by law -- 160 square feet -- and it includes a bevy of space-saving measures.

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Texas lost half a billion trees in current drought

This is what long-term desertification looks like: The state of Texas lost 5.6 million urban trees -- and as many as 500 million forest trees -- in the drought that’s been going on since last year. That’s 10 percent of the city trees and 10 percent of the forest trees in the state. The urban trees alone provided an estimated $280 million in annual services (shading buildings, controlling stormwater runoff) and will cost $560 million to remove.

Read more: Cities, Climate & Energy