Only Good News Monday

Updated: May 7

Getting the week off to a positive start with a global round up of good news nuggets.


Jubilee Trees

The Queen has said she is "deeply touched" by the efforts of people all over Britain who have together planted more than a million Jubilee trees in her name. The monarch issued a special message of gratitude, saying she hoped the saplings will "flourish and grow for many years to come" for future generations to enjoy. Her words marked the halfway point of the Queen's Green Canopy initiative, which spans two official tree-planting seasons, and celebrates the Queen's Platinum Jubilee milestone of 70 years on the throne.


A hand passing a small paper love heart to someone else's outstretched hand
Act of Kindness

Clarence Stephens from Kentucky tells this story: "Leaving a store, I returned to my car only to find that I’d locked my keys and cell phone inside. A teenager riding his bike saw me kick a tire and say a few choice words. “What’s wrong?” he asked. I explained my situation. “But even if I could call my wife,” I said, “she can’t bring me her car key, since this is our only car.” He handed me his cell phone. “Call your wife and tell her I’m coming to get her key.” “That’s seven miles round trip.” “Don’t worry about it.” An hour later, he returned with my key. I offered him some money, but he refused. “Let’s just say I needed the exercise,” he said. Then, like a cowboy in the movies, he rode off into the sunset."


On Track

Solar and wind power can grow enough to limit global warming to 1.5C if the 10 year average compound growth rate of 20 percent can be maintained to 2030, independent climate think tank Ember has announced, reports Reuters. Solar generation rose 23 percent globally in 2021, while wind supply gained 14 percent over the same period. For a global comparison of offshore wind pipelines [OGN 2 April], click here.


Moon Dust

Ever wanted to own a piece of the moon? Fine art auctioneers Bonhams will auction moon dust collected by Neil Armstrong during the Apollo 11 mission on 13 April. Anyone wanting to get their hands on the historic space dust will likely face strong competition at auction, and the item might go for as much as $1.2 million. The lunar dust is "the only example of verified Apollo 11 moon dust that can be legally sold." It's part of the auction house's Space History sale in New York.


Airbus 380 plane flying
The SAF-powered A380. Credit: Airbus
Cooking Oil Flight

Ever wondered what to do with old cooking oil? It turns out it could power the world's largest passenger airliner. Airbus performed the first-ever A380 flight powered by 100 percent Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) derived mainly from cooking oil and other waste fats. It took off in Toulouse, France, and flew for approximately three hours, powered by a Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engine running on sustainable fuel. All Airbus aircraft are already certified to fly using up to 50 percent SAF mixed with kerosene, but the company aims to take things a step further by earning 100 percent SAF flight certification before 2030.


The Samples family (mum, dad and two children) sitting on a sofa
Little Rock Star

Toddler with Uncombable Hair Syndrome brings "a smile to peoples' faces." When Katelyn Samples, from Roswell, GA, gave birth to her second child, Locklan, he had jet-black hair. But when he was six months old, his hair started changing. By his 9th month, his hair had become white-blond, extremely soft, and started sticking straight up. At first, Katelyn and her husband didn’t think anything of it. But when the mother received a message from a stranger mentioning the “uncombable hair syndrome”, they started worrying. The family saw a specialist, who confirmed that Locklan had the syndrome. The 16-month-old is one of just 100 known cases of the condition. The syndrome affects only his hair, as he is developing normally in every other aspect. "I would say that 98 percent of people are so kind and love it. They say he's like a little rock star,” Katelyn commented.


Farmer sitting in a tractor cab on a sunny day
Green Fertiliser

Farmers in England will be paid to use green fertiliser instead of artificial alternatives, the UK government has announced. The rising price of gas, which is used to make fertilisers, is adding to the spiralling cost of producing food, putting more pressure on struggling households. To help with costs, the government said it would pay farmers to use ‘green manures’ and sow nitrogen-fixing plants that reduce the need for artificial fertiliser.

 
Quote of the Day

"Often people attempt to live their lives backwards: they try to have more things, or more money, in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are, then, do what you need to do, in order to have what you want." Shakti Gawain

 
On this Day

4 April 1949: The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was formed. The founding member nations of the alliance being Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

 

Dive in Deeper


32,000 Year Old Plant


Remarkably, scientists have revived a plant from the Pleistocene epoch. Read on...


Watergate Whistleblower


Martha Mitchell tried to tell the truth about Watergate but President Nixon’s cronies trashed her reputation. Now her forgotten story is about to go mainstream and her reputation restored. Read on...


Human Genome Fully Mapped


Scientists finally finish decoding the last 8 percent of the human genome. It holds enormous promise for improving our understanding of human evolution and illness. Read on...

 
Zen Geometry

The creation of geometric patterns for a Zen garden is mesmerising and delightfully calming.