I heard this fascinating interview last week on NPR’s “Fresh Air.” How can we get to a cleaner energy future? Build lots and lots more renewables? Well, sure, but even more than that—and first—we need a smarter, stronger, more distributed energy grid. Gretchen Bakke, author of The Grid: The Fraying Wires Between Americans and Our Energy Future, explains.

On a lighter note, I’m pretty sure I’ve shared something along these lines before, but I repeat: I am really, really up for this effective planet-saving strategy.

Kristin E.

5-hour workday FTW!

Telling stories about scientists’ struggles, not just their glories, can help students, especially disadvantaged children, relate and see scientists as role models and get better grades in science.

Tim Urban took a break from epic novel-size posts about Elon Musk and the future of energy to write about how to decide whether to get married. It’s hilarious. His advice for researcher types: “If you’re typically a brain person, when it comes to The Decision, you want to try to not be you.”

  • Our work is made possible by the generosity of people like you!

    Thanks to Al Johnson for supporting a sustainable Northwest.

  • Hillary Clinton gets the presidential nomination and Bill gets the front page. Katinka Hosszu breaks a world record, and her husband is “the man responsible.” Researchers recently sorted through words in press coverage of athletes and found words associated with stories about female athletes:  ‘older,’ ‘pregnant,’ and ‘married’ or ‘un-married.’

    In contrast, male athletes  are: ‘fastest,’ ‘strong,’ ‘big,’ ‘real,’ and ‘great.’

    I think it’s safe to say we have not yet reached gender parity in media coverage.


    Eight Washington state tribes including the Yakama Nation, Swinomish Indian Tribal Community, Lummi Nation, Puyallup Tribe, Nisqually Indian Tribe, Suquamish Tribe, Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, and Hoh Tribe joined native-led protests to stop the Dakota Access oil pipeline, which is set to cut through Indigenous lands carrying 570,000 barrels of oil a day. “We’ve seen the success our friends from Washington state have had in their battles to protect treaty rights against the transport of fossil fuels,” says David Archambault II, chairman of Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. “Their support is crucial in the protection of our land, water and cultural resources. . . . ”

    Want to get involved? You can support the folks fighting the Dakota Access Pipeline here.

    Last Saturday, ‘Uncle’ Bob Santos, legendary Seattle civil rights and social justice champion passed away. Known as the unofficial Mayor of Seattle’s Chinatown/International District, he tirelessly dedicated his time to preserve the area. He will be greatly missed, but his legacy will live on through the activism of the Asian Pacific Islander community. You can read more about Uncle Bob’s legacy here.