OGN Sunday

Nuggets of good news to get the day off to a sunny start.

  • Following the good news that all giant US banks had done so, Scotiabank becomes fifth major Canadian bank to also refuse to fund oil drilling in the Arctic Circle, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

  • The best way to boost forest cover in the UK? Do nothing. That’s according to Rewilding Britain, which this week published its plan for reforesting the UK. The organisation argues that creating the right conditions for woodlands to expand naturally was the best approach, reasoning that it was cost effective, reduced disease risk and eliminated the need for plastic tree guards.

  • Love this: 'I told my daughter to grab her mask so we could go to the store and do some shopping. This was the mask she grabbed!'

  • Ex-wife of Jeff Bezos, MacKenzie Scott, announced last week her second major charitable contribution of the year, giving away over $4 billion to 384 organizations as part of her plan to donate the majority of her $60 billion fortune (which grew by $20 billion this year, courtesy of Amazon's share price rising sharply).

  • Good news for Americans who enjoy Scotch whisky (and Scottish distilleries) as UK and US close to deal on cutting tariffs, says White House trade chief.

  • Village in India plants trees for newborn girls: The initiative aims to promote gender equality and has boosted the village’s economy.

  • Nice neighbours: New Zealand will purchase enough Covid-19 vaccines to cover its Pacific Island neighbours, including Tokelau, Niue, the Cook Islands, as well as Tonga, Samoa, and Tuvalu - if those countries want to take up the offer. The Government has allocated $75 million of development assistance money to help roll out the vaccine to these countries.

  • Norway is doubling the price it guarantees developing nations to keep their tropical forests standing, in a step to slow catastrophic losses and encourage big companies to invest far more in nature to combat climate change. Norway is the top donor for safeguarding rainforests and has spent up to 3 billion crowns ($330 million) a year since 2008.

  • The last two decades has seen unprecedented success in controlling malaria, according to the WHO’s 2020 World Malaria Report. Its authors estimate that since the turn of the century, 1.5 billion cases of malaria have been avoided, saving an estimated 7.6 million lives.

  • Trump diagnosed with type of dyslexia which explains why he mixes up the words ‘lost’ and ‘won’, resulting in the 'loser' incorrectly believing all his losing has been winning. Warning: Fake News.

  • 50 frontline workers across America are driving home new cars this month, after they were nominated as heroes in the 2020 Mazda Heroes programme. Mazda announced in October it was giving away fifty brand new MX-5 Miata 100th Anniversary Special Edition models, with each car destined for individuals who “tirelessly dedicated themselves to their communities throughout 2020” through “selfless acts, creative thinking and contributions to community.” After receiving 1,000 inspiring nominations from across the nation which embody the car company’s value of “omotenashi” - putting other’s needs first - they selected 50 heroes.

  • This will get you in the festive spirit: a glorious rendition of Once in Royal David's City by Kings College Choir, Cambridge.