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Wednesday's Good News

Updated: Mar 6

An eclectic global round up of good news nuggets.


The Weeping Beech of Bayeux
The Weeping Beech of Bayeux | Francois Trinel
Tree of the Year

The voting in the European Tree of the Year contest is in full swing and the preliminary standings see a tree from France in the lead followed by Poland and Italy. Europeans can vote until 22 February at Tree of the Year. In accordance with the rules of the contest, the current standing is shared twice during the voting, which is otherwise secret. The current ranking sees The Weeping Beech of Bayeux from France in the lead followed by the Polish beech tree called The Heart of the Garden and The Thousand-year-old Olive Tree of Luras from Italy. The award Ceremony will take place on 20 March in the European Parliament.

 

National Treasure: Trees thought extinct for 2 million years discovered, and then kept secret for 30 years, have just been revealed. Read on...

 

McSki, Sweden
Credit: @BrownBagDC | X
McSki

The world’s only ski-through McDonald’s is in Sälen, Sweden, and has been a feature of this pretty little resort since 1996.


Good News for Women

Women can achieve greater long-term health benefits with half the exercise of men, new research reveals. The US study, tracking 412,000 adults for two decades, found women engaging in activities including running and strength training, experienced a 36 percent lower risk of fatal heart attacks or strokes. In contrast, men needed twice the effort for a mere 14 percent risk reduction. The study's author, Dr Martha Gulati said the findings were "an incentivising notion that we hope women will take to heart".


Wind-Powered Tanker

An oil tanker equipped with sails has embarked on a landmark voyage from Rotterdam to test the potential of wind power in the shipping industry. The Dutch-owned vessel, which weighs 16,000 tonnes, has been fitted with rigid aluminium “sails” that are designed to cut fuel consumption by up to 20 percent. “This system, called a ‘ventilated wingsail’, increases the wind’s power by five times - and gives the same power as an imaginary sail of around 30 by 30 metres.” The four 16-metre-high sails could be a key tool in reducing the shipping industry’s reliance on fossil fuels - which is currently responsible for around 3 percent of global carbon emissions.


Galactic Compass app
Galactic Compass app | Matt Webb
Galactic Compass

This new iPhone app might be just what you've always wanted. It's called Galactic Compass, and always points to the center of the Milky Way galaxy - no matter where Earth is positioned on our journey through the stars. The app is free and available on the App Store. You will then see a green arrow on the screen pointing the way to the Galactic Center, which is the rotational core of the spiral galaxy all of us live in. In that center is a supermassive black hole known as Sagittarius A*, a celestial body from which no matter or light can escape. (So, in a way, the app is telling us what we should avoid.)


Global Odyssey

79-year-old Luisa Yu has officially accomplished what many only dream of - visiting every country in the world. All 193 of them. For Yu, this journey began as a 23-year-old exchange student to the USA from the Philippines, and 56 years later, she fulfilled her lifelong goal. The crowning achievement recently came when Luisa Yu set foot in her final country, Serbia, marking the completion of her dream to visit every country on Earth.


Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb
The Bee Gees, from top, Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb | Wikipedia
Bee Gees Biopic

Ridley Scott is to direct a Bee Gees movie, in the latest of a wave of biopics about high-profile music industry acts. According to Deadline, Scott is in a project which has sole surviving Bee Gee Barry Gibb on board as executive producer, and Bohemian Rhapsody producer Graham King also involved. No details of the plot or cast have been revealed, but the film will have access to Bee Gees recordings through a deal that Paramount made with the Gibb family in 2019. The Bee Gees had worldwide sales of more than 220 million records, establishing the band as one of the biggest-selling groups of all time.


Heart Breaker

There is a new entry to the Guinness Book of World Records: a Dutch man has been recognized as the longest-surviving heart transplant patient. He has had the donor heart for almost 40 years.

 

"Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it." Michael Jordan

 
On This Day

21 February 1995: American businessman and adventurer Steve Fossett became the first person to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean in a balloon. It was the first of his many aviation records.

 

Abraham Lincoln pardoned Joe Biden's great-great-grandfather in 1864. Court martial...



Last weekend, airlines flew across that Atlantic faster than the speed of sound without creating sonic booms. Yes, really...



Choline: The little-known ingredient for boosting brain health. Tuck in...

 
Mood Booster

Pelican Feeding Fails: Jumping food is not the easiest to catch or eat.



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