OGN Thursday

Today's upbeat collection of good news snippets.

  • Congratulations, and thank you, to Ben Maze. He captured this image in Tasmania, in an extraordinary combination of astrophotography conditions, namely: the setting Milky Way galactic core, zodiacal light, and of course, the elusive Aurora Australis. On top of this, a sparkling display of oceanic bioluminescence adorned the crashing waves, adding the cherry on top of what is already a breathtaking photograph.

  • A restaurant that has traded for just 20 days since it opened in October 2020 has been awarded a Michelin star. Behind, in east London, was among several newly garlanded establishments, but is arguably one of the most surprising. “It means everything,” said Andy Beynon of his first solo venture, which focuses on sustainable fish. “Everything I’ve been working towards for the past 15 years. And opening in lockdown! We’ve only traded for 20 days. It’s crazy, absolutely crazy, but it means the world.”

  • First ever patient to receive an artificial cornea implant can see again. Remarkably, the 78-year-old man could even pass the classic eye exam test of identifying numbers and letters from a distance.

  • Nebraska surgeon comes up with an innovative payment solution to help both his patients and the local community. If you can't afford to pay for surgery, Dr. Demetrio Aguila will accept that you volunteer for the appropriate number of hours of community service instead. Everyone's happy!

  • In a sign of the times, the world's biggest diesel engine factory in Tremery, eastern France, is undergoing a radical overhaul - it's switching to make electric motors.

  • We all know that a healthy lifestyle is a good idea, and a new study indicates that it can help our body’s response to a vaccine.

  • Good news for Brits as head of AstraZeneca rejects calls for UK vaccine to be diverted to EU. Chief executive of pharmaceutical giant says the firm will honour UK’s earlier contract despite EU anger over shortfall.

  • Bookshops defy pandemic to record highest sales for eight years. More than 200m print books were sold in the UK last year, the first time since 2012 that number has been exceeded, according to official book sales monitor Nielsen BookScan. Kiera O’Brien, charts editor at the Bookseller, said bookbuyers seemed to be “making the effort to go to high-street and independent bookshops while they could, and spending a lot of money in one go”.

  • Washington becomes the first US state to give a climate voice to its citizens in a new assembly, allowing 80 randomly-selected members of the public to have a direct say on climate matters in the state.

  • A European group of global investment managers and pension funds has devised an ambitious plan to cut their portfolios down to net-zero carbon. The Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change includes more than 1,200 members in 16 countries. Together, they control over $40 trillion in assets. That's a lot of clout!

  • If you can't get out into the great outdoors, why not let it come to you? This feel-good clip of Highland 'coos' takes you to the wilds of Scotland....