In Rolling Stone, Jeff Goodell looks at “the scam behind the gas boom.” What really makes money for a natural gas company? “Buying and flipping the land that contains the gas,” Goodell reports. A team of scientists has discovered how to use wastewater’s bacteria to create electricity. For his 18th birthday Justin Bieber received (among many other gifts, we’re sure) an electric vehicle — a $100,000 Fisker Karma. The Senate transportation bill could include dedicated funding for walking and biking. Nestlé’s products no longer have artificial ingredients in them.
What do you do when orphaned baby sloths are afflicted with mange? Shave them, rub them with lard, and wrap them in sloth pajamas.
A Japanese company called Air Danshin Systems can make houses fly. Not all the time, and not for particularly long. But when it counts — during an earthquake — the company’s technology can levitate a house more than an inch off its foundation. That means that while the earth shakes, the house stays safe.
The Giving Tree should be ashamed of herself. Oh, sure, she let herself be made into a boat and a house and an uncomfortable metaphor for maternal martyrdom, but did she ever turn into a completely sweet-ass bike? Not a chance. That’s reserved for the lucky urban trees that fall into the hands of Masterworks Wood and Design.
Taliesin West, the iconic desert home created by Frank Lloyd Wright, is about to go net-zero, which means it will produce as much energy as it consumes.
Andrew Ference plays defense for the 2011 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins, so you'd think he'd be a meathead who mostly drinks beer and scratches his balls. But it turns out he shops with his kids at Whole Foods like all the other bobos.
Tornadoes tore through the Midwest, killing 12 people. North Korea will stop testing nuclear weapons in exchange for food aid. The Sierra Club’s ripping it up. One of two Chicago coal-fired power plants that are now slated to close marks “the 100th coal plant retirement announced since January 2010.” That’s about four every month!
Activists have succeeded in getting Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to shut down the city’s two coal plants — one of them by the end of the year. That doesn’t mean the city is off coal power entirely, of course, but banishing coal plants from within the city limits will have a massive effect on urban health. As Philip Radford wrote here on Grist last year, pollution from the Windy City’s coal plants costs tens of thousands of lives: Every year, the toxic pollution that spews from the smokestacks of America’s coal-fired power plants kills between 13,000 and 34,000 people, according …
It makes sense that there would be a museum to chronicle just how much we’ve messed with plants, animals, the climate, and in general the world around us. The Center for PostNatural History, opening this week in Pittsburgh, is that museum.