Our picks for the week of Jan. 16-22:
• The planet Venus may be beautiful, but it's a hostile environment. Learn more about the second planet from the sun with this gallery of surreal images.
• Yes, we know "American Idol" doesn't have much to do with the environment, but we thought this look back at the show's worst contestants — with video clips, no less — might make you smile.
• On the more serious side, we look at Joseph Lieberman's environmental legacy as he announces his retirement from the U.S. Senate.
• "American Wasteland" (book cover, left) peels back the curtain on America's crazy system of food waste. (You'll be amazed at how much we waste and how.)
• This week, we take you to Jekyll Island on the Georgia coast. This onetime getaway for the rich and famous is preserved for the average Joe to enjoy.
• Now here's some truly practical advice: 6 annoying driving habits and what you can do about them.
• Garden-variety allergies are nothing to sneeze at, but here are 10 bizarre allergies that will make you seriously paranoid.
• The green building competition called the [skipwords]Solar[/skipwords] Decathlon is one of our favorite events. But this year's gathering is only months away and is still searching for a new home.
• Author Monte Reel discusses his fascination with a "Lone Indian" — the last of his tribe — and what he represents in the larger struggle for preservation in Brazil and the rest of the world.
Plus: Don't miss the week in photos, which includes this ironic yet lovely image of a flooded wind turbine farm (at right.)