Eclectic collection of good news nuggets from around the globe.
Colombia has become the first country in the western hemisphere to protect 30 percent of its ocean, with fishing and oil exploration banned in four protected marine areas. The country recently joined forces with the US, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Canada, Panama and Costa Rica to collaborate and work faster to protect ocean areas. This is very good news not just for marine life - the oceans produce half of all the world’s oxygen and absorb 31 percent of human-produced carbon dioxide. Over 100 countries have joined a pact to protect 30 percent of the oceans by 2030; less than 8 percent of the world’s oceans are currently protected areas, according to the Marine Conservation Institute, a nonprofit organization based in Seattle.
End of Gas Boilers
In more 'Vladimir Putin, Climate Hero' news, the transformation of Europe's residential heating sector - the continent's largest source of gas consumption - is accelerating. More and more countries are introducing end dates. "Every gas boiler we get rid of is another step out of dependency on Russian gas," reports S&P Global. Whilst Norway banned installation of new gas boilers in 2017, and the Netherlands in 2018, and France in 2022, countries following close behind are Austria (2023), Germany (2024) and UK and Belgium in 2025.
Indonesia is one of the most spectacular development successes of the last two decades. With 274 million people, it's the fourth largest country on Earth - yet between 2000 and 2021, reduced the share of people living below the national poverty line from 20 percent to 10 percent - lifting around 25 million out of poverty.
Adjective: not too much and not too little; just the right amount. Lagom is a Swedish and Norwegian word that means "just the right amount."
Good news for beavers! They are to be given legal protection in England, meaning it will be illegal to kill or harm them as they are formally recognised as native wildlife. This is a step forward for the charismatic rodents, which were hunted to extinction in the country 400 years ago but have reappeared owing to both legal and illegal releases around the country. In 2020, the first beaver dam in 400 years was spotted in Exmoor, in South West England.
Bloomberg says EV sales have crossed the 5 percent tipping point in America, and is now predicting a quarter of all new cars will be electric by 2025, several years earlier than expected. (Reminder: transportation is responsible for more emissions than electricity in the US.) And guess which states have had the highest EV growth since 2014? California and New York aren't even in the top five. Leading the pack is Mississippi, followed by Hawaii, Utah, Maryland and Wyoming. Climate change might be partisan, but buying a better car is as American as apple pie.
Public Health Success
After 45 years of public health efforts, Niger is on the verge of becoming the first country in Africa to end onchocerciasis, also known as river blindness. The fight against the disease gained momentum in the 1990s thanks to mass administration of the drug Mectizan, reports the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Quote of the Day
"Never give up hope. All things are working for your good. One day, you’ll look back on everything you’ve been through and thank God for it." Germany Kent
On this Day
27 July 1886: Landing of the transatlantic telegraph cable at Heart's Content, Newfoundland from England; laid out by Isambard Kingdom Brunel's Great Eastern steamship (1,686 miles long). The first message across the Atlantic was delivered the next day.
Natalie Imbruglia performs a slowed down version of her hit single “Torn” with the BBC Orchestra.