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Tuesday's Uplifting News

Updated: Mar 4, 2023

Tasty bite-sized chunks of uplifting news to get the day off to a bright start.


Job Title Inflation

When you enter an unfamiliar office for a meeting with someone who works there, you will almost certainly approach a person sitting behind a large desk. You might think you are about to speak to a receptionist. But in some buildings, you will be dealing with someone far grander: a lobby ambassador. If that feels absurd, take a deep breath. Plenty of companies now employ a “director of first impressions”, a job whose responsibilities include greeting all visitors at the front desk, almost as if you were meeting a receptionist. At Hudson Yards, a development in midtown Manhattan, advertisements tell candidates for one role that they are expected to “curate experiences” for visitors if they have questions. You might think you are asking someone where the toilet is; in fact, you are having an experience with a brand ambassador.


wood stork wading in a swamp
Back from the Brink

The ungainly yet graceful wood stork, which was on the brink of extinction in 1984, has recovered sufficiently in Florida and other Southern states that U.S. wildlife officials have proposed removing the wading bird from the endangered species list. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said that restoration of the wood stork's habitat, especially in the Florida Everglades and adjacent Big Cypress National Preserve, led to a sharp increase in breeding pairs. Those numbers had shrunk to just 5,000 pairs in 1984, whereas there are more than 10,000 pairs today.


Family e-Bike

With the launch of its new Fetch+ range of cargo ebikes, Trek is aiming to provide eco-conscious parents with the means to leave the car at home when taking the kids for a quick spin into town, to school or the local park. "At a time when so many people are wondering how they can get out of the car and go green, Fetch+ can help you replace car trips, stop wasting gas and feel better about your carbon footprint," said Trek's Brian Turany. It's a great idea but sadly still quite a pricey option, starting at US$5,999 from April.


Avalanches Help Birds

They’re the bane of skiers and winter mountaineers - often with awful consequences. However a study of avalanches in the European Alps, led by Italy's University of Turin, has uncovered an unexpected upside: they attract a more diverse range of bird species. A huge flow of snow down a mountain slope acts like a giant broom, sweeping away dense pockets of forest to make way for smaller shrubs to create a ‘habitat mosaic’.


Gene Therapy

A girl born with a rare and deadly genetic condition is expected to live a long and normal life after becoming the first person to be cured on the UK's NHS with the help of a revolutionary gene therapy. Teddi Shaw was diagnosed with metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD), an inherited condition that causes catastrophic damage to the nervous system and organs. Those affected usually die young. But the 19-month-old from Northumberland is now disease-free after being treated with the world’s most expensive drug, Libmeldy.

 
 
EU Lead-Shot Ban

A ban on hunting with lead-shot in EU wetlands has come into force, with campaigners hailing the move a huge milestone. The ban applies to all 27 EU nations, as well as Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein, and follows a two year transition period allowing countries to phase out lead. A million waterbirds die of lead poisoning each year in the EU, mistaking shot for grit which they eat to help grind up their food. Shooters now have to use non-toxic alternatives.

 

"We are more fulfilled when we are involved in something bigger than ourselves."

John Glenn

 
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.

 





 
Mood Booster

Dolphins playing catch with a Pufferfish.




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