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Saturday's Good News

Updated: Jun 30, 2023

Celebrating the start of the weekend with a global round up of good news nuggets.


Laser beams shooting into the night sky
Credit: ESO
Image Precision

This striking image shows four powerful lasers that form part of the Very Large Telescope in the Atacama Desert, Chile. The lasers make sodium atoms in the atmosphere glow like artificial stars, allowing the telescope to correct for atmospheric distortion of the light from real stars, and so create sharp images. The Very Large Telescope - run by the European Southern Observatory - obtained its first images 25 years ago, and has since been involved in key research including studies of the supermassive black hole at the centre of the Milky Way.


Leaky

Detroit police officials want to stop information from leaking out to the media, according to an internal memo that was leaked to The Detroit News.


Magical Day

Four children have been found alive after surviving a plane crash and spending weeks fending for themselves in Colombia's Amazon jungle. Colombia's president said the rescue of the siblings, aged 13, nine, four and one, was "a joy for the whole country". The missing children became the focus of a huge rescue operation involving dozens of soldiers and local people. President Gustavo Petro said finding the group was a "magical day", adding: "They were alone, they themselves achieved an example of total survival which will remain in history." Mr Petro said the siblings were receiving medical attention - and that he had spoken to their grandfather, who told him "the mother jungle returned them".


Addie McElreath's graduation day
Credit: Addie McElreath
$1k Gift to Graduates

Before walking across the commencement stage, 2,000 undergraduate students of the University of Massachusetts Boston learned they'd be getting $1,000. Billionaire communications CEO Robert Hale provided two envelopes - one with a $500 gift for each student and the other with $500 for the students to gift a person or organization. Addie McElreath, 27, whose grandparents travelled from Maine to see her receive her bachelor's degree in English, felt Hale introduced a new generation to the societal importance of "giving as much as you can." Hale hopes that when students feel the joy of giving, it will "become a trait that carries on for the rest of their lives."


Close up of the underside of a mushroom
Jaw Dropping

Scientists have discovered how a ‘jaw-dropping’ subterranean carbon sink made entirely of fungi pulls down more than a third of global CO2 emissions each year – enough to cancel out China’s annual toll. Mycorrhizal fungi networks hold 13 gigatons of CO2, making them the “most effective carbon capture storage unit in the world,” according to experts at the University of Sheffield, UK, who led the study. Researchers said that fungi deserves a better standing in conservation efforts, and called for soil ecosystems to be preserved.


Double Duck

A pair of giant yellow rubber ducks have been spotted in Hong Kong waters. The bath toys are undergoing sea trials ahead of the exhibition Double Ducks by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman. Since 2007, Hofman has taken his 61-foot-tall (18.6m) monumental rubber duck on a world tour. On the 10th anniversary of its first visit to Hong Kong, the creative brand ARR has invited the rubber duck back, accompanied by a new friend.


Tesla Model 3
Tesla Model 3 | Wikipedia
Surprise Surprise

The total cost of ownership of the new Model 3 is about the same as the cheapest car in America. This is according to the arithmetic of Paul Fosse writing for Clean Technica, who compared the most popular EV brand’s latest offering to the internal combustion-powered 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage, the cheapest car in America. Using “Total Cost of Ownership” (TCO) meaning all the costs of owning and operating a vehicle spanning 5 years, Fosse shows that Tesla is actually an economy class car.


Major Energy Shift

A major shift is taking place in global energy. Five years ago, for every dollar invested in fossil fuels, the same went to clean energy. Since then, a big gap has opened up. This year, for every $1 invested in fossil fuels, $1.70 will go to clean energy, led by solar, which in 2023, for the first time ever, will attract more capital than oil, says the Financial Times. Most of this is because of solar in China, easily the most under-appreciated climate story in the world right now. The country is currently installing 12 GW of solar panels a month - that's more than the total solar installed in the United States, in a single year, according to Bloomberg. Furthermore, reports EuroNews, wind and solar produced more energy in the EU during May than all fossil fuels combined, according to energy think tank Ember. “Europe’s electricity transition has hit hyperdrive,” says Ember’s Europe lead Sarah Brown.

 

“There are always flowers for those who want to see them.” Henri Matisse

 
On this Day

10 June 1752: Benjamin Franklin tests the lightning conductor with his kite-flying experiment.

 





 
Mood Booster

Simply the Best: King's Guard pays tribute to Tina Turner.



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