The Kickstarter video for The WATT? An Energy 101 Primer does a good job of explaining why, exactly, people should care about energy: Energy is everything. It’s a part of pretty much every aspect of modern life. wherever you live, whatever you do, however you do it. Unfortunately, most people know next to nothing about how this stuff actually works. The makers of the The WATT? — Focus the Nation, a clean energy youth organization, and Friend of Grist List Ben Jervey — aim to change that by publishing an “users’ manual for energy in the 21st century.” They’re going …
Since the 1970s, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch -- an area of the ocean clotted with plastic microparticles -- has grown 100-fold. And this is very bad news, not only because of the creatures it harms but because of the ones it helps.
In the Netherlands, there are more than 30 "Repair Cafes" -- groups that meet once or twice a month to repair clothes and gizmos and tools that might otherwise be discarded.
Props to Canada for setting an actual carbon emissions goal. Too bad there’s almost no way they’re going to meet it. The World Bank is pushing countries to put a monetary value on the resources their ecosystems provide. A new study shows that monkeys who were exposed to BPA in utero developed unusually dense mammary tissue — in humans, a risk for breast cancer. Those dead pelicans that washed up on the shores of Peru likely starved to death.
OK, I had always understood that Canadians build tree forts with little tiny fridges in them if, and only if, they have a million dollars. But Vancouver-area software developer Joel Allen built his insanely beautiful HemLoft when he went financially bust. And because he was broke, he built it by hand, illegally, on government-owned land.
Woe betide you if you decide to drive your ironic vintage Yugo in Brooklyn instead of your fixed-gear bike with detachable mustache. Park Slope residents have had enough of those bullshit half-spaces that show up in front of cars when someone moves an SUV and it gets replaced by a compact. They’re so pissed off, they’re hauling out their letterpresses and feverishly hand-pulling artisanal parking tickets.
This allergy season has been terrible. It seems like everyone I know has been running around with leaky eyes, even those of us who aren’t typically pollen-sensitive. Granted, there was an unusual amount of tree sperm in the air this year, but it seemed strange that everybody — really, everybody! — was afflicted. But a new study by Finnish researchers explains everything: The reason we’re all so sick is that we live in the city. According to this study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and based on research done in Finland, people who live in cities …
More than a quarter of the world’s human-related methane emissions come from livestock burps and farts, which is bad enough — but imagine what the climate would look like if cows weighed 25 tons. Back in dinosaur days, we had some seriously outsize herbivores roaming the planet, making some seriously outsize butt music. A team of British researchers has now calculated how much gas those giant asses would have passed, and concluded that dinosaur emissions contributed significantly to Mesozoic global warming.
Pelicans and dolphins are dying in droves in Peru — 1,200 birds and 800 dolphins have washed up dead on the coast — and the government is warning people away from the beaches until it figures out why. Dinosaurs might have passed enough gas (i.e. methane) to match current levels of greenhouse-gas emissions. The Crawford family of Texas held out against TransCanada reps who want to route Keystone XL through their land, and now the company’s trying to force them to give that land up.