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Tuesday's Uplifting News

Global selection of uplifting news nuggets to get the day off to a bright start.


Beer called Harry's Bitter in a London pub
Fancy a Pint?

You've got to love this: The Duke of Sussex pub in Chiswick, west London, has renamed its house ale Harry's Bitter in a very British riposte to the Harry and Meghan Netflix series. The draft ale comes with the strap line: A Royally Good Tipple. One punter commented: "Fittingly, with only 3.9 percent alcohol, Harry's Bitter is as weak as its namesake.”


Land Protection

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced a $587 million initiative to support up to four Indigenous-led conservation projects over the next seven years. The funding, which draws from government coffers and private philanthropy, is set to protect up to 386,000 square miles of land across four Canadian provinces and territories.


Teenager who beat supposedly incurable cancer

Incredible Progress

A teenage girl's incurable cancer has been cleared from her body in the first use of a revolutionary new type of medicine. All other treatments for Alyssa's leukaemia had failed. So doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital used "base editing" to perform a feat of biological engineering to build her a new living drug. Six months later the cancer is undetectable. Doctors say that this result would have been unthinkable just a few years ago and has been made possible by incredible advances in genetics.


Winning Euro Millions jackpot ticket
Credit: Waldemar Brandt
Village Jackpot

In the 1998 comedy Waking Ned Devine, a multi-million dollar lottery jackpot is split between the stunned residents of a tiny Irish village. Well, last week, the film’s storyline became a reality for the small Belgian village of Olmen, near Antwerp. 165 Olmen residents divided up an unbelievable $150 million dollars won in the Euromillions lottery. The ticket will pay out $915,000 to every individual - tax free. Local shopkeeper Wim Van Broekhoven, who regularly organizes a group pot for the drawing - with each person contributing €15 ($20) - said the residents are shocked by the lucky win.


Fossil of a long-necked plesiosaur, known as an elasmosaur

Rock Chicks

A group of female graziers from outback Queensland who hunt fossils in their downtime have uncovered the remains of a 100m-year-old creature that palaeontologists are likening to the Rosetta Stone for its potential to unlock the discovery of several new species of prehistoric marine giant. One of the “Rock Chicks” – as the amateur palaeontologists call themselves – uncovered the fossilised remains of the long-necked plesiosaur, known as an elasmosaur, while searching her western Queensland cattle station. This was the first time that an elasmosaur skull has been found connected to its body in Australia. The information that provides could allow palaeontologists to decipher other fossils held in museums, just as the Rosetta Stone, with its three scripts, allowed philologists to crack ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics.


Conservation Win

Industrial-scale fishers will no longer be able to use two types of shark-fishing gear in the western and central Pacific Ocean after the international body in charge of tuna fisheries there agreed to ban the devices. The measure, adopted last week at the annual meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC), is seen as a major and potentially precedent-setting win for conservationists who say urgent action is needed to stave off extinction for many shark populations.

 
 
Wirangu People

After 25 years, the Wirangu people have native title over part of their traditional lands on South Australia's west coast. After lodging their claim in 1997, it's being seen as a 'bittersweet' moment as none of the original applicants are alive to see their families accept more than 5,000 square kilometres (1,930 square miles) of land. "What it means is the recognition of what most people already know - this always has, always will be, Aboriginal land."

 

"Poetry is life distilled." Gwendolyn Brooks

 
On this Day


13 December 1642: Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sights the South Island of present day New Zealand; initially he calls it Staten Landt and changes it a year later to Nieuw Zeeland.

 





 
Mood Booster

Penguin caught cheating, so his jealous female partner puts a stop to his flirtatious behaviour.



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