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Friday Finds: Dumpster Diaries

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24 June 2011, 12:25 PM
Oceanic catastrophe, mythological creatures, oil baron payback
Haul from a dumpster dive in Sweden. Photo courtesy of sigurdas.

Dumpster diver documentary details discard diet
Americans need to stop tossing out more of half of their food and start donating it, reports dumpster diver Jeremy Seifert in Grist. Seifert, who’s been diving into dumpsters and pulling out edible food for several years, recently created a documentary detailing our wasteful society and the dumpster diving culture. In the article, he also calls on the progressive grocery store chain Trader Joes to end food waste by donating soon-to-expire foods to homeless shelters rather than tossing them. Making sustainable food choices not only helps feed the more than one-in-eight Americans dependent on food stamps, it also helps the environment by cutting down on water use and methane emitted by rotting food. So, dive in!

Report finds oceans under attack
The world may be on the verge of the sixth mass extinction with the oceans serving as ground zero, reports Reuters. According to the International Programme on the State of the Ocean, coral reefs are dying, low-oxygen dead zones are spreading and fish populations are collapsing worldwide thanks to climate change, over-fishing, pollution and habitat destruction. Though many of these issues are all too familiar to the scientific community, the magnitude and direness of the situation managed to shock even the ocean experts who created the report. In the report, the authors issue a dire warning: "Unless action is taken now, the consequences of our activities are at a high risk of causing ….the next globally significant extinction event in the ocean.” Find out how Earthjustice is working in the courts to protect our vital oceans.

Conservation effort brings back mythological creature
Unicorns may not exist, but the creatures who most likely inspired the legend are back in action after a successful conservation effort with a fairy-tale ending, reports the UK Guardian. The last wild Arabian oryx went extinct in 1972, but through successful captive breeding and reintroduction efforts the long-horned species is now back in full force in the Arabian peninsula. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, it’s the first time a once-extinct species has bounced back so successfully. No word yet on whether dragons and mermaids will be coming back anytime soon.

Obama administration may hike taxes on oil barons
The government may soon start demanding that the energy industry pay its proper dues, reports iWatch News. A few months back, an iWatch investigation found that the oil and gas industry regularly underpays what it owes to the government, potentially costing taxpayers billions of dollars. The last time government officials examined oil and gas royalties was about a quarter of a century ago, so it's high time that they took another look at the tax records. And, with a stagnant economy, record-high gas prices, and a ballooning budget deficit, this might be the perfect time to stop the spigot of oil money and return it to its proper owners--the American people.

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