Attacking locavores and more Green Reads


Hello, earthlings! I wish you a happy fall, one day after the equinox. It seems to be a busy time in the green media right now—hence this extra-long edition of Green Reads, complete with locavore attacks and a major newspaper fake. And now, for your reading pleasure:

A discussion of the "No Impact Man" project, in which a New York family attempted to live without fossil fuels for a year, drawing both criticism and admiration in the process. The writer of this piece both explains the project and gives an interesting range of reactions to it, from "that’s gimmicky" to "that’s worth another look."

Speaking of criticism, here is Grist’s review of a book, Just Food, that takes locavores to task for, essentially, missing the point. In turn, the Grist reviewer absolutely skewers author James McWilliams. Read and decide for yourself.

The Yes Men, those media-tweaking tricksters, recently faked an entire edition of the New York Post. The purpose was to wake up readers to the reality of climate change, and for those already on the eco-bandwagon there’s actually a lot of info in the counterfeit paper.

One more national item: The White House will be LEED-certified! Damn, those Obamas are savvy. Not just about the trends—anyone who’s paying attention already knows about green building—but about their own ability, due to their position as First Family, to bring the conversation to a wider slice of the country.

In would-that-it-were-local green news, we have protests of coal-burning plants on college campuses. UVA is one of the schools with its own coal plants; I’d love to see some Hoos out there yelling about it.

Of course, if they did someone would inevitably remind them (in more or less gentle terms) that energy issues are complicated—as you can see in this story about a Virginia wind farm that rubs elbows with a Civil War site. Yikes! I have one word for you, and it rhymes with "monservation."

Finally, read here about local developer Oliver Kuttner’s quite serious run for the X Prize, a race to develop highly fuel-efficient cars. We’re talking 100+ miles to the gallon. It’s really pretty fascinating—the major strategy of Kuttner’s team is to build an extremely lightweight car.

Got links to more green reads? You know what to do.