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OGN Friday

Updated: Jan 17, 2021

Bite sized chunks of good news to round off the week.

  • Colorful, elusive chameleon rediscovered in Madagascar after 100 years. Scientists say they discovered several living specimens of Voeltzkow’s chameleon during an expedition to the north-west of the African island nation.

  • When bushfires ravaged the Australian countryside this year and last, an enormous number of naturally occurring tree hollows were destroyed - a wide variety of birds, along with other small animals, make their homes in such hollows. Australian scientists have a clever solution.

  • Tennessee’s Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport became the first US airport powered by 100% solar energy. That's great! But you may be surprised to learn that the world’s first airport to go completely solar was the Cochin International Airport in Kochi, India.

  • A plant-based diet may make for a healthier lifestyle but it can also go a long way in preserving our planet’s health too. Milan was an early mover in this philosophy and decided to reduce its CO2 emissions by lowering meat consumption in the city’s school canteens. Five years after tweaking cafeteria menus, the Italian city managed to achieve a 20 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions - the equivalent of taking about 13,000 cars off the road.

  • Hollywood firm to build £300m film and TV studio in Dagenham, Essex. The production complex will create 1,200 jobs and expected to contribute £35m a year to the east London economy. First productions are due to start filming by mid-2022.

  • Botswana is home to the world’s largest elephant population (almost 130,000 individuals), with 70 percent of them living outside National Parks. This means they compete with the local human population for food land and scarce water resources. A safari company has raised funding for the ‘EleSenses’ research project, which includes a multi-coloured solar strobe light which appears as a barrier to potential crop-raiding elephants, so discouraging them from entering a field at night.

  • A couple have officially become Mr and Mrs White-Christmas after tying the knot in a pre-lockdown ceremony at the Roman Baths in Bath, Somerset. Childhood sweethearts Kieran White and Tilly Christmas, who met when they were 12 years old, combined their surnames to create the very unusual 'White-Christmas'. 

  • Record numbers of an endangered turtle species have hatched in Mexico this year thanks to dedicated efforts of an Indigenous conservation group. Tortugueros del Desemboque, a conservation group among the Seri people in the Mexican state of Sonora, released over 2,250 baby Olive Ridley sea turtles into the Gulf of California this year. Usually 500 to 1,000 are released.

  • Rocket fuel from captured carbon for zero emissions: The fuel needed to launch a rocket into space creates an enormous amount of harmful emissions. The good news is that a New York vodka company may now have a solution for avoiding that.

  • Acts of Kindness: As a child growing up in Queensland, Australia, Janelle Boston always wanted to climb nearby Mount Tyson in Tully, but the planned hike was cancelled due to bad weather conditions. Then in her 20s, Janelle was diagnosed with MS and now, she can barely take a few steps. This came to the attention of the local Tully Tigers rugby club who decided that, as part of their training, the squad would get together to carry Janelle (now 55 years old) up the 700m mountain. “This is what the people in Tully are like,” commented Janelle’s mother.

  • Fans of The Crown, the hugely popular Netflix series about the British royal family, will be delighted to hear that season four airs on 15 November, with Gillian Anderson taking on the mantle of playing Margaret Thatcher. To whet your appetite, take a look at the trailer for Season Four.

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