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Just Good News Monday

Updated: Mar 6

What better way to start the week than with an upbeat collection of positive news nuggets?


Hats Off to Frank

A 73 year old has broken his own record to become the oldest person to row across the Atlantic. Frank Rothwell completed the 3,300 solo voyage unassisted - capsizing twice on the way - from the Canary Islands to Antigua in just over 64 days. On arriving, he held up a Union flag, before embracing his wife, Judith, who was waiting for him. It was the second time Mr Rothwell made the crossing to raise money for charity Alzheimer's Research UK. He has so far managed to pull in £270,000 ($340,000), which is in addition to the £1.1m ($1.38m) on his record transatlantic row back in 2021, when he was 70.


America's Amazon

A $15 million land purchase in Alabama will protect 32 km2 of the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, dubbed ‘America’s Amazon’ for its remarkable biodiversity and wildlife. The deal, which is called Land Between the Rivers, is a collaboration between The Nature Conservancy, a private donor, and outdoor clothing company Patagonia. "This is one of the most important conservation victories that we’ve ever been a part of. It’s protected a vitally important complex of land, almost 8,000 acres, critically important to the health of the Mobile Delta and then, by extension, Mobile Bay and the Gulf of Mexico," says Mitch Reid of The Nature Conservancy.


Bronze Age dress fastener
Credit: British Museum
Dress Fastener

A metal detectorist in Staffordshire, England, has unearthed a gold Bronze Age dress fastener, according to a recent report from the British Museum. Officials say the fastener was likely made in Ireland. “This remarkable gold object illustrates cultural links between Ireland and Britain during the Bronze Age,” writes the museum. “At this time, Irish smiths were producing some of the most exquisite goldwork in Europe.” The Bronze Age in Britain lasted from around 2300 B.C.E. to 800 B.C.E. The newly discovered fastener is five inches long and weighs about a quarter of a pound.


Franklin from the Peanuts cartoon
Credit: AppleTV+ via AP
Franklin

​Franklin, the first Black character in the Peanuts comic strip, is getting his own animated Apple TV+ special. Franklin first appeared in the comic strip in 1968 after a teacher and advocate requested the author - Charles Schulz - add a Black character in the wake of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Schulz introduced him by having Franklin return Charlie Brown’s wayward beach ball one day by the sea. It was a historical meeting and a statement: Many public beaches, like other public facilities such as schools, swimming pools, theaters and restaurants, were segregated at the time.


Xi Jinping
Xi Jinping | Wikipedia
China's Renewables

In 2020, Chinese leader Xi Jinping pledged that the country’s emissions would begin falling before 2030 and hit net zero before 2060, part of its plan prepared under the Paris accord. Nobody really believed him. He also said China would have 1,200 gigawatts of total solar- and wind-power capacity by the end of this decade. The country is now six years ahead of schedule! China reached 1,050 gigawatts of wind and solar capacity at the end of 2023, and the China Electricity Council forecast last month that capacity would top 1,300 gigawatts by the end of this year.


Musician playing the trumpet
Credit: Unsplash
Blowing OGN's Trumpet

More than a third of people worldwide say they sometimes or often actively avoid the news, says the BBC. Look, we're not experts, but we're guessing that if you spend years punching someone in the face with stories about how awful everything is, at some point they're going to decide they're not interested any more.


US Air Pollution

For the first time in a decade, the US Environmental Protection Agency has tightened regulations on air pollution, lowering the allowable limit for annual PM2.5 levels from 12 micrograms per cubic meter to 9, reports NPR. The reduction is predicted to reap $46 billion in net health benefits by 2032, including prevention of up to 800,000 asthma attacks and 4,500 premature deaths.


Cuddly Toys

An Australian toddler had to be rescued from an arcade claw machine, after he crawled up the prize-dispensing chute in search of soft toys. Apparently, he was in no rush to be rescued. Ethan's father said that his son had had "the time of his life" in the machine, where he was stuck for 10-15 minutes before police broke the glass to release him.


 

"Your job, throughout your entire life, is to disappoint as many people as it takes to avoid disappointing yourself." Glennon Doyle

 
On This Day

19 February 1878: American inventor Thomas Edison patented the phonograph - an instrument for reproducing sounds by means of the vibration of a stylus, or needle, following a groove on a rotating disc.

 

The James Webb Space telescope has discovered an impossible galaxy. Head scratcher...



Researchers find that red netting is even more effective than hole size - leading to multiple benefits. Win win...



Selection of delightful images from the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2020. Snap happy...

 
Mood Booster

Hilarious clip of a councillor denying that a road was dangerous. Guess what happened next!



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