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Today's Good News

Updated: Feb 26

Today's eclectic global round up of positive news nuggets.


Polar bearing sleeping on a small iceberg
Ice Bed by Nima Sarikhani | Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Winning Snap

An amateur photographer from the UK has won a prestigious award for this emotive shot of a polar bear sleeping on a small iceberg. Nima Sarikhani captured the image off Norway's Svalbard archipelago after spending three days "desperately searching" for the animals through thick fog. The picture, titled Ice Bed, has been crowned the winner of the Natural History Museum's Wildlife Photographer Of The Year people's choice award, after being whittled down to a shortlist of 25 from almost 50,000 entries from around the world. Want to see more of the people's choice finalists? Click here


Stat of The Day

The island nation of Iceland, which has a population of just over 300,000, has more writers per head of population than any country on Earth, says Guinness World Records. Over the course of their lifetime, one in 10 Icelanders will publish a book. To put this remarkable 10 percent figure into perspective, only 0.02 percent of Americans publish a book.


Historic Moment

In a historic moment for global health, the world’s first malaria vaccine just started being administered in Cameroon. After successful trials in Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi, 662,000 doses of the RTS,S vaccine will be given to children in Cameroon. The rollout is being hailed a “transformative chapter in Africa’s public health history,” and 19 more countries will also introduce the vaccine this year. “For a long time we have been waiting for a day like this … it brings more than just hope, it brings a reduction in the mortality and morbidity associated with malaria,” said Dr. Mohammed Abdulaziz at the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.


Britain's Rainforests

Britain isn’t the first place that comes to mind when thinking about rainforests. Yet temperate rainforests once covered large areas of the British Isles, with only scattered pockets of these ecosystems now remaining. That’s set to change, with work beginning on restoring vast swathes of rainforest in places including Devon, Wales, and the Isle of Mann. These projects are part of wider efforts to bring back these unique habitats, spearheaded by the Lost Rainforests of Britain campaign.


Word of the Day

Buncle: The spirit of a buncle, or "bad uncle" is that "they don’t believe in society’s petty rules and regulations." The relative "who acts like some shifty, outlawish chaos agent" can be found in almost every family, says The Times.

 

Definitions of Words With One Letter Changed: The Washington Post asked readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition. Some of the readers' submissions are hilarious...

 

Sun-dried tomatoes
Credit: Supree
Genuinely Sun-Dried

Much as we may like sun-dried tomatoes, they're typically pretreated with sulfur dioxide or salt before the drying process, which may actually be carried out in an oven. By contrast, a new type of cherry tomato has been selectively bred to dry right on the vine. Developed by food tech company Supree, the tomatoes contain microscopic cracks in their skin. Once the fruits have grown large (relatively speaking) and ripe, those cracks open far enough to allow moisture to naturally evaporate from within them. As a result, the tomatoes have typically lost about 80 percent of their original weight by the time they're picked, thus concentrating the flavour, antioxidants and other nutrients in the remaining 20 percent.


Energetic Enzyme

Scientists at King's College London have developed an innovative way to recycle single-use plastics using enzymes found in laundry detergents. The chemical recycling process can break down the plastic within 24 hours - which is 84 times faster than current 12 week industrial methods - and even allows for the production of high-quality reusable materials, offering a possible solution to the environmental challenges posed by plastic waste. This novel method of chemical recycling is published in Cell Reports Physical Science.

 

"If you carry your childhood with you, you never become older." Tom Stoppard

 
On This Day

8 February 1926: Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio becomes Walt Disney Studios.

 

Three students won $700,000 this week using AI to read the first passages of a 2,000 year old scroll carbonised in the volcanic eruption of 79 AD. Herculaneum Papyri...



New government records show Apple’s secretive auto division almost quadrupled its self-driving miles in 2023. Project Titan...



Five new quarters celebrating notable American women to be released this year. Minted...



Interactive map lets you plug in your address and find out where on Earth it was 750 million years ago and all points thereafter. Enjoy...

 
Mood Booster

Birds eye view of spectacular flying devil rays.



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