Grist List

Election 2012

What environmental policy could we expect from President Colbert?

Stephen Colbert has officially thrown his hat in the ring for definitely possibly considering a run for president. He's already out-polling Jon Huntsman! So what kind of environmental policy platform could we expect from a President Colbert?

Climate Change

Don’t believe the hype about the ‘molecule that could solve climate change’

Some chemists came up with a really clever way to observe the intermediate stage of an atmospheric chemical reaction, and then some PR flack got a hold of it and suddenly science has invented a brand-new molecule that will solve all our climate change woes! As usual, things that seem too good to be true probably are.


Congressional staffers will stop betting on wildfire destruction

We here at Grist mock a lot of people. But we don't always manage to mock some sense into them. Which is why we're pretty psyched about the response to Sarah Laskow's feature story revealing that congressional staffers were making deadly wildfires into a fun office pool:  McKie Campbell, the [Senate Energy and Natural Resources] committee’s Republican staff director, said the contest has been stopped. “It will never happen again,” he said in an interview Wednesday. “It was in no way indicative of disrespect for any of the folks who put their lives on the line to battle the fires.”

Africa’s first green, locavore, gluten-free beer

In Mozambique, home brewing is big -- not because the country is full of mustachioed, fixie-riding expats from Portlandia, but just because it's less expensive. So when brewing giant SABMiller wanted to figure out how to sell beer to people who are already making their own, they had to do it on the cheap.

Climate & Energy

Scientists discover color of galaxy, can only describe it in poetry

We went back and forth on whether this would be relevant to your interests, but it's about the universe and the Earth is in the universe, right? I think that's a non-controversial scientific statement even Rick Santorum would agree with. (Maybe. Does Rick Santorum believe in the galaxy?) Anyway, astronomers have found the exact color the Milky Way galaxy would appear if you were standing outside it, and it turns out it is a color that can only be expressed in poetry.

Scientist blames James Bond for lack of nuclear support

Anti-nuclear campaigners, why do you dislike nuclear power? Is it because of the risk of massive meltdowns? The unsolved issue of what to do with waste? The lack of realistic evacuation plans? Or is it the influence of a James Bond movie you probably watched at least a couple times as a bored child -- Dr. No?

Critical List: Shale gas could squash renewables; scientists fiddle with photosynthesis

New York City promises to double the percentage of waste diverted from landfills within the next five years. Increasing shale gas production could squash renewable energy development. The Obama administration released a draft plan for protecting the country's oceans. Scientists are fiddling with photosynthesis in order to make biofuel.

NPR has lots of ideas for what to do with Twinkies

The staff at NPR has been responding to the news of Hostess' bankruptcy by getting up to some Twinkie shenanigans. Forget that James O'Keefe stunt, this is NPR's real shame. (But seriously, how do we get in on this action? Call me!) First, Science Desk tried seeing if one would dissolve in Mountain Dew. (Verdict: Not after two hours, but that mouse carcass had a lot longer.) Then the food blog came up with 10 more things to do with Twinkies.  Science Desk also has a whole raft of other experiments they want to perform ("At what temperatures do Twinkies …

Let’s make fun of Rick Santorum talking about climate change

Is it getting boring to make fun of Rick Santorum? I don't really care, because frankly the dude is both a menace and an ignoramus and that is comedy gold even if he didn't look like the love child of Ryan Reynolds and a turtle. (Yes, I recycled that joke, but it's TRUE.) It's all very well to talk about frothy mixtures and whatnot, but opportunities to mock Santorum go well beyond his Google problem. Although seriously, does anyone else feel sort of dirty when they type his name, like they should be writing "Sant*rum" or something? Anyway, Treehugger found a doozy of a quote from Sir Mixture-a-lot about global warming. Let's mock it! (Note to Rick and adherents: We are not in the "then they laugh at you" stage of Gandhi's, or whoever's, hierarchy. We are just laughing at you.)

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