What better way to end the week than with a global round-up of positive news nuggets?
Opposites are said to attract; but when scientists tested this idea, they found that, in fact, we generally pair up with people who are strikingly similar to ourselves. The researchers, from the University of Colorado Boulder, analysed data from existing studies involving millions of couples going back to 1903, to see how likely they were to share 22 specific traits and habits. They also looked at data on 80,000 couples in the UK, in which 133 traits were at issue. Both analyses revealed that couples tended to be broadly aligned on more than 80 percent of the traits examined.
Back From The Brink
The Azores bullfinch, one of Europe’s most endangered birds, has bounced back from the brink of extinction after 20 years of habitat restoration in Portugal, says Smithsonian Magazine. In the 1990s the bird’s population fell to a critical level of around 100 breeding pairs, but today, thanks to conservation efforts and increased availability of food and nesting habitats, there are 1,300 birds.
30 x 30
California has codified its 2020 pledge to protect 30 percent of land and coastal waters by 2030 with the passage of a new bill. In further positive progress, California Governor Gavin Newsom has also signed a landmark climate disclosure bill that will require public and private companies that make more than $1 billion annually and operate in California to publicly disclose their greenhouse gas emissions.
House of Cards
Chinese record-breaker Tian Rui has built the world's tallest house of cards in 12 hours, confirms Guinness World Records. It had a total of 50 storeys and a height of just over 11ft (3.37m).
WFH Carbon Validation
During the various lockdowns, almost everyone, with the exception of essential workers like doctors, nurses, and army personnel, found themselves working from home. While many may have rejoiced at the idea of returning to their offices to establish some form of ‘normalcy,’ most of us working from within the comforts of our bed got too cozy. In an extensive validation for all lovers of WFH, a new study (led by researchers from Cornell University and Microsoft) says that the carbon footprint of remote workers is significantly less than that of onsite workers. Remote work employees have 54 percent less carbon footprint, whilst hybrid workers - those who fluctuate between working from home and going to their office in a week - who work from home two to four days per week reduce their carbon footprint by 11 percent to 29 percent.
In 2012, Nigeria partnered with UNICEF and aid agencies from the UK to improve access to learning for girls in six states in northern Nigeria. After ten years of implementation, UNICEF reports that girls’ enrolment has skyrocketed from 1.76 million to 2.87 million, a 64 percent increase; gender parity increased from 0.73 to 0.97; and the proportion of girls completing primary school increased from 57 percent to 87 percent.
“Every Friday, I like to high five myself for getting through another week on little more than caffeine, willpower, and inappropriate humor.” Nanea Hoffman
On this Day
22 September 1735: Robert Walpole becomes the first British Prime Minister (actually First Lord of the Treasury, as the post was then called) to live at 10 Downing Street.
Vicarious adrenalin rush to kick-start the day.