I am currently living about 5 miles from a coal-fired power plant. The smoke plume is obvious and seems somewhat ominous. Should I be worried about adverse health impacts? [more inside]
Does it make ecological sense to return glass bottles from Switzerland to Belgium for re-use? [more inside]
I'm will be looking for a car soon. A USED car, as I simply can not afford a new hybrid or anything like that. I have heard of TDI Jettas being as few efficient as Prius's. I am aware that diesel is not so awesome environmentally. But I want to know if it evens out. I'm looking for links to reputable information on the topic. NOT - opinion of hear say. If you know enough to talk my ear off about it then you know where to find the information, then do so and send me a well resourced link to back it up. [more inside]
I have a can of old art fixative. Is it better for the environment if I use it or dispose of it? [more inside]
We'd like to at least consider cloth diapering twins, mainly for environmental reasons (which, by the way, Is it totally settled that cloth diapering is greener? We live in SoCal so water is more of an issue than in most areas). Has anyone tried it, either with singletons and multiples, and would you recommend it for twins? If so, any specifics on brands/methods/tips would be great.
I have £150 spare this month and would like to spend it in a way that benefits the environment (climate change related). I'd love your suggestions about how I can use this money to have the most impact, whether that's donating to a top notch environmental charity or investing it in a green tech (renewables, insulation etc.) company that is doing particularly good work.
Mom wants a fuel-efficient car . . . what should she get? [more inside]
Surely when people try to be more "green", some efforts are significant and some are mere rounding error. What are some examples I could use, with an emphasis on the quantifiable and counterintuitive? [more inside]
I think the EnergyStar program could do more good, and may actually be doing harm in its current form. In what ways could I try to impact it? [more inside]
What does it mean for palm oil and soya to be 'organically farmed'? Is it ethical to buy products with organic palm oil in? (I know that in general palm oil is bad news and I try to avoid it.) [more inside]
Canadian politics question. Screwing the environment and shutting down science - what's in it for Harper? [more inside]
Any National Park Service or other closely affiliated agency (BLM, Army Corps of Engineers, etc) able to speak about their experience with said agency? [more inside]
So, what is the most oil-dependent thing that most people do / western lifestyle choice? How do we discourage that thing / encourage an alternative? [more inside]
Some friends of mine live in a brilliant location in downtown DC, and one of them is leaving, giving me an opening to move in. This is far and away the best apartment I've ever had a shot at. Just one possible catch: the building's ground floor is a dry-cleaning business, so I'm concerned about exposure to PERC. Should I be? Does DC have any more stringent regulations than those enforced by the EPA? Can I request a test of air quality in the building before I move in (as appears to be available in NYC)?
I would like to hunt wild pigs. Only problem? I'm a liberal Democrat, I live in San Francisco, and I've never been hunting before. [more inside]
I'm looking for stories about hydrofracking. Specifically, for stories about how a drilling company obtains leases and commences operation, and how it manages its relationships with the locals. Ideally I'd like stories from the perspective of neighbors and people in the local community where they have operated, but stories from the drilling company side would be interesting, too. [more inside]
I have an ongoing (friendly) disagreement with a guy I know. He drives a Toyota Prius because it's "better for the environment" than buying, say, a new Subaru Outback. Fine. I get that. But my argument is that it would be even better for the environment if he were to buy a used Subaru Outbook. I've never run the numbers, but it seems to me that if you were to buy the most gas-guzzling of used cars, the fact that you're not causing a new vehicle to be produced would make up for the lack of fuel efficiency. Can you help support my position? Or, alternatively, give me solid numbers as to why I'm wrong? Are there websites that have run analyses on this sort of thing already?
Should I take the flyer/free newspaper offered to me in the street? I am torn between helping the guy get home sooner, and not supporting an environmentally harmful practice.
My employer is NOT green, Help! [more inside]
In 2009, 91.2% of Seattle's electricity was from hydroelectric sources, and in 2010, 87.9% was hydro. Is the hydro capacity maxed out, or will it scale up to meet additional demand and maintain that ratio? Here's what I'm getting at: If I were to use more electricity than now, will that incremental power effectively come from non-renewable sources rather than ~90% hydro?
At present, what is the most environmentally friendly way to deal with a human body after they die? [more inside]
What are some examples in fantastic and speculative fiction of characters struggling to survive in a beautiful but alien and dangerous natural environment? All media acceptable. [more inside]
I'm highly skeptical of a lot of brands that trumpet their environmental friendliness. I know "greenwashing" is rampant. What are some green brands/products that walk the walk? [more inside]
How do you deal with fears about global warming? [more inside]
What to do with 30-50 trees' worth of large branches in Orange County, NC? Burn, shred, give away for bird thicket, other ideas? [more inside]
Asking for a friend: Any recommendations on books about social or environmental justice for a high school junior? [more inside]
The Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal has just been named to the National Register of Historic Places. Will this complicate efforts to keep Asian carp out of Lake Michigan? [more inside]
I can recall a text-book case of introducing a species (deer) into a new environment, where a lack of natural predators caused a population boom, followed by local extinction. I remember most of the details but I can't find the actual cite. Please help! [more inside]
Best way to paint a floor that gets a lot of traffic? [more inside]
What are other clothing manufacturers with clearly stated ethics? I'm thinking of Patagonia as an example. Who else? [more inside]
I usually use the New Year for a small environmental resolution. Can you help me find a good one for this year? [more inside]
Can you help me Metafilter? The Bureau of Land Management in Colorado is trying to lease 30,000 acres of farmland and wilderness for fracking, including land completely surrounding the farm I live on! [more inside]
The air is usually very dry in the winter. Why are my car windows always frosted over without exception? [more inside]
I vaguely remember reading an argument that in some situations, giving birth to a kid or two rather than adopting is not particularly worse (perhaps environmentally, or in terms of effects on population growth, or resource consumption, or something along those lines--the big picture/the global future.) Yes, I realize this sounds counterintuitive, but can anyone point me to such an argument? [more inside]
Please help me find a job that I can do with my environmental/renewable energy degree. [more inside]
I would like to become a professional writer, and possibly someday be a freelance writer. My background is in the humanities, but I’m wondering if seeking an advanced degree in science might help me in my endeavors. Or are there other options that I’m overlooking? [more inside]
Please help me find some specialist renewable/environmental recruitment agencies in the south west of England.
Please help me find some specialist renewable/environmental recruitment agencies in the south west of England. [more inside]
I'm designing a university course on the grand ol' theme of humanity's place in nature. What are some readings on this topic, from any discipline, that have fascinated/moved/influenced you? [more inside]
What copper salt is left behind in this neutralized etchant solution? Also, how can I safely dispose of spent etchant in general? [more inside]
How important is context to getting work done? What are effective ways to manipulate context to get more done? [more inside]
Should I got to HR about a hostile work environment? [more inside]
Resources for green business initiatives? [more inside]
Does a water filter filter plastics like BPA? Is there a way to test my tap water for them? Are there water filters that do not contain plastic? Does Aquafina or any other filter plastics? [more inside]
Does anyone out there use a kick scooter to commute? What are the benefits and challenges? [more inside]
You recently completed a diploma in environmental site remediation. What intangible gift should I give you? [more inside]
Are there any programs that reward people for moving to within walking distance of their work place? [more inside]
[PythonFilter] How can I create a location-based web application using Python? Or, what are some good resources to help me get started with this specific task? [more inside]
I'm thinking of doing a major career change, and I'm interested in up-and-coming environmental technologies. I'm having a hard time separating the facts from the hype. Help me figure out what the next great field of green technology is! [more inside]
What interview questions should I ask Bill McKibben? I'm interviewing him for our community blog, and would like to do this well. [more inside]
Does a bomb calorimeter give a value of heat energy per gram of material or electricity? [more inside]