Living

Screw it

We screwed Earth Day — get over it

Another Earth Day has come and gone. In most cities, the green, biodegradable streamers have come down, and the free eco-swag already has been shoved under the bed. What now? Terry Hart via FlickrWell, if you’ve been hanging around Grist lately, you would know that that’s the question we’ve been asking all along. What now? What happens the day after Earth Day? How do we extend our green commitment all year long? For a few weeks now, we have been simultaneously celebrating and scrutinizing Earth Day. We launched a special series investigating the question: Does Earth Day still matter? We …

Guitar Hero?

Taking Neil Young’s latest album out for a spin

In 2006, Neil Young released a powerful political album, “Living With War” — an 11-track screed against the Iraq misadventure and the folly of sending young people off to die in faraway lands. It felt immediate, like Young had recorded it in a hurry, harkening back to CSNY’s rapid-fire release of “Ohio” within a few weeks of the shootings at Kent State. Its polemical lyrics, bashing everything from George W. Bush to the mind-dead consumerism of America, were great, but they were icing on the cake. It was the music — angry, raw, full of the powerful guitar that defines …

Are You Being Servered?

Umbra advises on web hosting

Q. Greetings Umbra, To save energy and limit greenhouse gas emissions, I’ve so far resisted establishing my own website. However, because I’m an author and these days almost all authors use websites to further their careers, I’m now thinking of setting one up. How much energy do websites actually consume? Are there ways to make them less energy consumptive? Do any web hosts use renewable power, and if so, which ones use the highest percentage? (BTW, a few years back after the release of my book Divorce Your Car! several people suggested my next book should be Divorce Your Computer!) …

Breaking through the gas ceiling

Eco driving tips for Earth Day

In advance of Earth Day, PR reps flooded Grist with "save the planet: green your driving" tips and press releases. In keeping with our "Screw Earth Day" theme, we just want to stress the need to drive like every day is Earth Day -- TAKE THE BUS! No, seriously, if you're going to drive, then you gotta know how to drive in an eco-friendly manner.

We'll drink to that

Raise a glass to sustainability at Seattle Carrotmob event

Photo: Scott Beale / Laughing SquidToday is Earth Day. (Whoopee?) And there’s no better way to celebrate than with a nice, cold pint of beer. No, really! To make it truly Earth-Day-worthy, however, make sure you’re chugging buying it at Seattle’s Pike Pub & Brewery today. Why there and why today? Seattle Greendrinks has partnered with Carrotmob to create a consumer-powered event in which 25 percent of all sales at Pike Pub today will go toward efficiency retrofits, waste reduction, and other sustainability efforts. It’s a way to vote with your dollars, to make change by spending a little of …

History of the Greens, Part I

The secret history of Earth Day

If 40 years of Earth Days have taught us anything, um … While the Earth Day movement has had undeniable successes, critics charge that, uh … Whatever, screw it. Here’s the “real” story (with jokes!): 1970: Twenty million Americans celebrate the first Earth Day, but bloggers opine that it’s just a fad and will be quickly forgotten by those “stoned-out hippies.” 1971: Nixon White House looks forward to second annual celebration, which it refers to internally as “Pay Less Attention to Vietnam Day.” 1972:  Green ring added to official Olympics logo in attempt to “green up” the upcoming Montreal summer …

Gestalt of the Earth

Our fourth annual Earth Day list of the year’s goodies, oddities, and inanities

The hottest eco-activist in the White House, the awesomest surprise benefit of eating locally, the manliest organic body product on the market, and more!

Paying it forward

The band Lady Antebellum adopts green habits to last beyond Earth Day

My band — Lady Antebellum — is doing something different this year. We want to practice realistic green habits that we know we can do year-round, not just on Earth Day. We just released our latest video for a song called “I Run to You,” which is all about paying it forward. The idea of making small lifestyle changes now as a way to “pay it forward” so future generations have a better planet is such a simple and obvious way we can help. One of our first steps was taking the FilterForGood pledge to reduce bottled water waste. Like …

We Soaked In It

A test of green(er) dishwasher detergents

Like the thorn under the rosebud, big piles of dirty dishes symbolize the tragedy of existence: pleasure (e.g., the pleasure of eating and cooking) invites pain. But dishes are more than just a symbol; they also (unfortunately) need to be done, day in and day out. The question becomes: how to do them as painlessly — and harmlessly — as possible? Thankfully, Grist’s own Umbra Fisk has signed off on the automatic dishwasher as the greenest option. “Dishwashers have been proven, again and again, to be more efficient than the typical hand-washer,” Umbra writes.  The choice of detergent matters, Umbra …

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