Tag Archives: carbon footprints

beaded lizards, carbon cafes, and sex advice at the academy of sciences

i just got back from the super radtastic nightlife event at the phenomenal new california academy of sciences museum in golden gate park. every thursday night, they open up the museum at night for people to drink wine, poke starfish, drink beer, ogle anacondas, drink cocktails, stare at jellyfish, dance awkwardly a bit while a dj spins, and generally do their best not to fall into a tank full of rare white alligators.  this is pretty much my idea of the perfect evening, assuming no alligator incidents. i’m kind of a nerd. science museums rock.

bar-and-aquarium

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bittman and colbert: cheeseburgers, SUVs, and the environment.

i’m busy planning the go game event for sxsw interactive in austin next week, but here are some entertaining/educational tidbits for your day. first off, other people joining michael pollan on my list of intellectually crush-worthy public figures are mark  bittman (kickass cookbook writer and food blogger) and steven colbert (i know you know who he is). i just read and loved bittman’s newest book, the smart and straightforward food matters, which he discusses in this clip from yesterday’s episode of the colbert report:

i am a dumbass when attempting to embed things, so you can watch here via serious eats.

one of the most interesting topics covered by food matters and mentioned in this clip concerns the impact of industrial food systems, especially meat production, on the environment.  i find it interesting that this isn’t discussed much in terms of what the public can do to help affect climate change, an idea that i’d like to talk about in more detail at some point. if you’re interested in learning more, here’s an article that bittman wrote for the new york times back in january.

to distill some sound bites from the video and article,  in case you don’t have a six minute attention span, know how to read,  or you’re actually ‘working’ right now…

‘serving a family of four a steak dinner for four is the equivalent of driving around in your SUV for 3 hours with all the lights on at home [in terms of energy consumption].’

‘if Americans were to reduce meat consumption by just 20 percent it would be as if we all switched from a standard sedan — a Camry, say — to the ultra-efficient Prius.’

oof. pretty fascinating stuff.  we all know about driving less and turning lights off, but not many people connect meat consumption to climate change. does he mean we should stop eating meat? not at all – that’s a pretty unpopular and unrealistic idea for most people. but cutting down on meat consumption and eating sustainably raised meat would be healthier for our bodies as well as the planet. read the book!

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