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Only Good News Nuggets

Updated: Sep 15, 2021

  • More good news for coffee drinkers: a cup of coffee a day can reduce the risk of a stroke by a fifth, say researchers at Semmelweis University in Budapest, after one of the largest ever studies on the subject. Data on almost half a million Britons obtained from the UK Biobank show people who drank a moderate amount of coffee - defined as anything from half a cup to three cups a day - were 21 percent less likely to have a stroke than people who avoided coffee completely.

  • Buddhist monks have known it for centuries, while late adopters in the west have recently come around to the idea. Now US researchers have added scientific weight to the notion that daily meditation can make your brain quicker and improve your ability to concentrate.

  • The Scottish government is drawing up plans for a ‘minimum income guarantee’ to tackle poverty. The scheme would aim to provide everyone in Scotland with a minimum acceptable standard of living, ensuring they have enough money for housing, food and other necessities.

  • Meet Super Sema, the star of Africa's first animated superhero series for children. Super Sema is 10 years old, creative and innovative, and uses technology to solve problems in her community. But the minds behind "Super Sema" know their animated star has another superpower up her sleeve. "African children need to see themselves represented on TV, on media," says Clara Njeru, head of production at Kukua, the Kenyan company behind the show. She says children especially need more role models in science, technology, engineering and math. So far, "Super Sema" is a hit, attracting 15 million views in a month.

  • In a new book on the history of transportation - A Brief History of Motion: From the Wheel, to the Car, to What Comes Next - by journalist Tom Standage, deputy editor of The Economist, he argues that the world has now passed “peak car”. In 2017, world vehicle production reached what may be its high watermark - 97 million new vehicles - before falling 1 percent in 2018 and another 5 percent in 2019. This view is supported by the CEO of Bosch, the world’s largest maker of car parts.

  • Beavers have become the unofficial face of rewilding in the UK, having been reintroduced to sites across the nation 400 years after they went extinct. The reintroductions have been so successful that the government is now launching a consultation on proposals to return the animals to more waterways in England. The species has been found to reduce flooding and boost biodiversity.

  • Whatcom County Council, Washington (best known as the location of mighty Mount Baker), has just become the first local government in the U.S. to amend its land-use law to prohibit new refineries, fossil fuel shipment facilities and coal plants. It also requires a more rigorous environmental review and permitting processes for the expansion of current facilities. In doing so, Whatcom County has provided a blueprint for ending fossil fuel expansion for other communities to follow.

  • It took 10 years to develop the first floating windfarm and it seemed to some a dangerous gamble to put it 15 miles off Aberdeen, Scotland, in the stormiest waters of the North Sea. But after three years of being in operation it has broken world records for maximum output. The good news is that this ability to install turbines in deeper waters, where winds tend to be stronger, opens up huge amounts of the ocean to generate renewable wind power: close to 80 percent of potential offshore wind power is found in deeper waters. In addition, positioning floating turbines much further off the coast helps avoid conflicts with those who object to their impact on coastal views. Win win!

  • Fun Fact: Koala’s have fingerprints almost identical to humans. It's so hard to distinguish between the fingerprints of koalas and humans that even under a microscope it's hard to tell. There are even reported cases of a koala’s fingerprints confusing forensics at crime scenes.

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Can't Help Falling In Love

Elvis classic beautifully played on a violin. So good, even a passing dog stopped to listen.


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