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Friday's Good News Nuggets

Updated: Mar 7, 2023

Wrapping up the week with a worldwide bundle of good news nuggets.


Angkor Wat at sunset
Crown Jewels Returned

A stunning trove of never-before-seen gold jewelry has been returned to Cambodia. It includes more than 70 artifacts - crowns, necklaces, woven gold belts and intricate body ornaments - from the Khmer Empire, a far-reaching state in Southeast Asia from the 9th to the 15th century. Cambodian authorities say that tomb raiders likely looted the items from ancient temples and burial grounds in the 1970s or 80s - and officials are now celebrating their return in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. The country is essentially “getting back the crown jewels of the Angkor Empire,” says Hab Touch, secretary of state with Cambodia’s culture ministry. The artifacts come from the collection of the late Douglas Latchford, an art dealer and scholar of ancient Cambodia. The year before his death in 2020, Latchford was indicted in the United States and accused of being an “antiquities trafficking kingpin.”


Amazing Progress

Health officials in India are reporting a 98.7 percent decline in cases of visceral leishmaniasis between 2007 and 2022 - from 44,533 to just 834 last year. The disease, also known as Kala-Azar or Black Fever, is the second deadliest parasitic killer in the world after malaria. India says it might eliminate it this year, reports TimesNow.


Watterson Returns

New Year’s Eve 1995, six-year-old Calvin and his tiger, Hobbes, appeared in the final strip in Bill Watterson’s acclaimed comic, Calvin and Hobbes, which appeared in 2,400 newspapers, and it looked as though it might be Watterson’s final published work. In the ensuing decades, the man who had become a cartooning legend all but disappeared, but the surprise announcement of Watterson’s first major work in nearly 30 years - The Mysteries, a vibrantly illustrated “fable for grown-ups” - has stunned fans and called for celebration.


The Tiger King Effect

Tiger King, the Netflix documentary, has helped end the same industry it made famous, with the Biden administration outlawing the private ownership of big cats and the public petting of the animals at zoos and sanctuaries, says the New York Times. The new law signals the end of 'a warped industry with no socially redeeming purpose, perpetrating great harm.' Sadly, mullets are still allowed.


Conservation Successes

Populations of endangered rhinos, buffalo and elephants are rebounding in Uganda. Since 1983, the buffalo population has increased by 77 percent and elephants by nearly 300 percent, says Yale360. Eastern black rhinos have rebounded too - after being wiped out in the 1980s, they were reintroduced in 2005 and their numbers have grown to 32.


Powering Portugal

Renewable utilities supplied 88 percent of Portugal's electricity consumption in January, up from 52 percent a year earlier, as heavy rains and good wind and solar conditions allowed sharp reductions in use of gas-fired power plants. As a result, production of electricity through gas power plants fell 64 percent, says grid operator REN. Portugal aims to generate 80 percent of its annual electricity usage from renewable sources by 2026.

 

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.

Chinese proverb

 
On this Day

24 February 1981: Prince Charles announces engagement to Lady Diana Spencer.

 





 
Mood Booster

Anna Kendrick - Cups - Pitch Perfect’s When I’m Gone.



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