Mid-week round up of positive news items from around the globe.
The world is poised to make a big leap forward at the UN Cop26 climate summit, with world leaders “sharpening their pencils” to make fresh commitments that could put the goals of the 2015 Paris agreement within reach, says John Kerry. As special envoy for climate to Joe Biden, Kerry gave an upbeat assessment of the prospects for Cop26, which begins in Glasgow at the end of this month, saying he anticipated “surprising announcements” from key countries.
Merck & Co has applied for U.S. emergency use authorization for its tablet to treat mild-to-moderate patients of Covid-19, putting it on course to become the first oral antiviral medication for the disease.
Legislators in Norway have served infuencers and advertisers a dose of reality, with new rules that govern the use of Photoshopped images. Research suggests a link between body dissatisfaction and the use of social media, on which tweaked photos that tout unattainable standards of beauty are rife. In Norway, images that have been altered to change a person’s appearance must now be labelled as retouched under new amendments to the country’s marketing act. Norway’s ministry of children and family cited studies showing that ‘kroppspress’ (‘body pressure’) contributes to low self-esteem in young people.
Kev Crane from Leicestershire, England, has been a plumber for 8 years. He loves singing, and as a hobby, he writes his own music. He even built a studio at his home after watching YouTube videos on how to record and mix music. While he was on a job one day, Kev started to sing along to the radio at Paul Conneally’s home. Turns out, Paul Conneally owns a record label - New Reality Records. “He sent me some songs and I was blown away by his songwriting and his attention to detail in producing a sound that is so 80s but so now at the same time,” Conneally, 62, commented. After that, he offered the plumber a record deal. “It just feels surreal. I never expected anything like this to happen,” Kev, 49, said. He has now released a debut album, Why Can’t I Be You? under Conneally’s record label.
Bicycle advocates and members of the Bill de Blasio administration recently gathered on the Brooklyn Bridge to celebrate the first reconfiguration of the landmark in more than 70 years. In an event de Blasio called “a symbol of New York City fully embracing a sustainable future and striking a blow against car culture,” the city unveiled a protected bike lane replacing a lane of traffic long given over to cars.
Researchers studying naturally occurring antibiotics have isolated one which eradicated the bacteria that causes Lyme disease, potentially offering a revolutionary treatment for the pathogen. Lyme disease iscan be so debilitating that it puts some people out of action for years, and affects 500,000 Americans annually.
About 30 years ago, the National Forest Company launched a rewilding revolution in the English Midlands. Its goal was to transform the industrial landscape in the area into a sustainable woodland area - the National Forest. The National Forest now covers an area of 200 square miles across three counties and is home to more than 9 million trees. The old coal mines and quarries were converted into nature reserves and parks. The project and related business now supports nearly 5,000 jobs.
Four brave women in South Africa have successfully overturned a set of antiquated marriage laws that denied women equal property rights. Around 400,000 elderly black women will now have equal access to matrimonial property. Land ownership and property rights are integrally connected to the power of self-determination. This is particularly important for a class of persons historically oppressed by society and the law - elderly black women.
Fun Fact: The Northern Hemisphere is home to 90 percent of the Earth's total population.
Dive in Deeper
World's First Peace Treaty
The Treaty of Kadesh, signed over 3000 years ago, is inscribed on a wall for all to read.