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US: New Mexico goats used to restore nature, help reduce fire threat at Candelaria Nature Preserve
4 December 2021 - The Candelaria Nature Preserve in the North Valley is protected land. However, too many weeds are killing the native plants. Conservationists are deploying 120 goats to help protect the area. With every bite, goats are helping restore nature. 'They love to eat everything,' Sean Ludden, with Ciudad Soil and Water Conservation District, said. 'Goats take care of those weeds so that we can get native plants in the ground and have them thrive.' ... Not only will goats help bring nature back to its glory, but it also helps reduce fire threats. (more)

ColdHubs: How solar-powered cold storage is reducing food waste in Nigeria
3 December 2021 - In the bustling Ogere Market in Ogun State, Nigeria, the race is on to sell fresh produce early in the day. By noon, the sun is at its peak, and with temperatures soaring, food spoils fast. As the day wears on, food can sell at less than half of its original value, slashing profits for retailers and farmers. That's why Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu decided to take a fresh approach to food waste. He's the founder of ColdHubs, which provides solar-powered food storage units designed for markets and farms. (more)

How floating islands can make urban waterways green and clean
3 December 2021 - Many of the world's cities are built around waterways. Paris and the Seine, Allahabad, India and the Ganges, Cairo and the Nile -- these rivers, at one time the life-force of their city, are now so polluted they're unfit for swimming and host very little natural wildlife. ... Biomatrix Water, a biological technology company based in Scotland, says it has developed a solution using a system of floating modular plant platforms that green and clean urban waterways. (more)

Native American confirmed as head of National Park Service
2 December 2021 - The U.S. Senate has unanimously approved the nomination of Charles 'Chuck' Sams III as National Park Service director, which will make him the first Native American to lead the agency. 'I am deeply honored,' Sams told the Confederated Umatilla Journal on Friday [19 November]. 'I am also very deeply appreciative of the support, guidance, and counsel of my tribal elders and friends throughout my professional career.' (more)

US: Financier's Northern California ranch to become public park
2 December 2021 - A ranch in remote Northern California once owned by the late financier Dean Witter has been sold to a nature conservancy that plans to convert into a park, providing public access to a wild and scenic stretch of the Eel River for the first time. (more)

US: Santa Cruz farm provides jobs to the homeless, food for the community
2 December 2021 - Homeless Garden Project offers employment, support network, and the seeds of a new life. Founded in 1990, the nonprofit organization runs a 3.5-acre farm ... on Santa Cruz's western edge not far from Natural Bridges State Park. Working the land, they grow more than 80 crops. Along the way, many find new purpose, focus, and recovery. (more)

The medieval Dutch solution to flooding
1 December 2021 - In a world of more frequent and more intense flooding, one way to protect against the worst can trace its roots back to the Netherlands, nearly 1,000 years ago. As the mayhem [of Europe's flooding in July 2021] unfolded, one corner of Northern Europe suffered far less. But what underpins [the Netherlands'] varied forms of flood defense is an institution: the so-called 'water boards' that have protected this waterlogged land for nearly a millennium. (more)

US national parks to offer look into green-friendly transit
1 December 2021 - Under multimillion-dollar pilot programs made available by the $1 trillion infrastructure law and other federal spending, visitors to national parks could see self-driving shuttle buses, along with electric scooter or bike stations and electric charging stations for zero-emission cars. (more)

India's economy grows by 8.4 percent amid signs of recovery
30 November 2021 - India's economy grew by 8.4 percent in the July-September quarter from the same period a year earlier, the government announced Tuesday [30 November], raising hopes of a recovery after the country suffered historic contractions sparked by the coronavirus pandemic. (more)

US: 'Thanksgiving Grandma' spends 6th year with the guy she mistakenly invited to dinner
30 November 2021 - There are some holiday traditions that you can always count on. One of those is that 21-year-old Jamal Hinton and 64-year-old Wanda Dench will break bread on Thanksgiving. The pair has warmed the hearts of people across the internet for six years running -- all after an accidental introduction went viral in 2016 and dubbed Dench as the 'Thanksgiving Grandma.' The heartwarming affair is not only a feel-good tale of viral internet stories, but it has had a positive impact on both Dench and Hinton's lives in ways they didn't anticipate. (more)

Nigerian musician Davido says he will give $600,000 to charity after online appeal
29 November 2021 - Nigerian-American musician Davido has announced he will donate more than $600,000 to orphanages across Nigeria, after hosting an impromptu online appeal that initially sparked amusement and confusion from his fans. Davido has been one of Africa's most prominent artists over the last decade and is the African artist with the highest number of followers on Instagram. (more)

Artist's joke to his friends garners $600,000 for Nigerian orphanages
29 November 2021 - A Nigerian musician and showman asked for money on Twitter for his birthday to get his Rolls Royce released from a port, but donated the full amount of $600,000 to orphanages across the country. 'In my usual playful manner, I requested a few days ago that my friends and colleagues send money in celebration of my birthday,' Davido wrote in a statement. 'The response and outcome exceeded my expectations.' CNN reports that he has appointed a disbursement committee to identify orphanages in need and distribute the money accordingly. (more)

Swapping small talk with strangers for deeper dialogue offers surprising rewards
29 November 2021 - People benefit from deep conversations, but we often stick to small talk with strangers because we underestimate how much they're interested in our lives, according to new research from The University of Texas at Austin. Amit Kumar, an assistant professor of marketing at UT Austin's McCombs School of Business and co-author of the study, [said] '...we'd likely be happier if we dug deeper when we're interacting with others.' (more)

The small Danish island that makes more energy than it uses
29 November 2021 - The small Danish Island of Aero was awarded the title of the EU's most sustainable island in 2021. The island has been experimenting with renewable energy since the 1970s, and today, produces more electricity than it uses. (more)

Bee gold: Why honey is an insect superfood
28 November 2021 - It should come as no surprise that bees know a lot about honey. They aren't only honey producers, they are also consumers, and pretty sophisticated ones at that. Offer a sick bee different varieties of honey, for example, and it will choose the one that best fights off its infection. ... a large body of research has revealed that honey is chock-full of plant chemicals that influence honey bee health. (more)

Navajo and Hopi farmers keep the culture of food alive
28 November 2021 - The Navajo and Hopi nations in northeastern Arizona are known as 'food deserts,' with little access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Tribal members lost land, languages, and farming practices when white settlers colonized the West. But local farmers are working to keep the culture of food alive for the next generation of Indigenous farmers, gardeners, and chefs. KNAU's Melissa Sevigny reports, they're blending traditional knowledge with nontraditional farming techniques. (more)

The ancient tablets revealing the mysteries of Babylonia
28 November 2021 - Plimpton 322 is the name given to a 3,800-year-old clay tablet discovered in Iraq in the early 20th Century by archeologist Edgar J Banks, the man believed to have inspired Indiana Jones. Over time this tablet has become one of the most significant and most studied objects of the ancient world. Dr Daniel Mansfield, of the University of New South Wales, who has studied Plimpton 322 along with other similar tablets, argues that these are evidence that the Babylonians were solving real-world problems, such as surveying, using the basics of Pythagoras' theorem 1,000 years before the ancient Greeks. (more)

Why putting solar canopies on parking lots is a smart green move
27 November 2021 - Solar farms are proliferating on undeveloped land, often harming ecosystems. But placing solar canopies on large parking lots offers a host of advantages -- making use of land that is already cleared, producing electricity close to those who need it, and even shading cars. (more)

Researchers discover this one Mozart sonata helps alleviate symptoms of epilepsy
26 November 2021 - Mozart is an 18th-century Austrian classical composer. As a child prodigy, he stunned musical circles; and as a young man, he created challenging works which are still played by orchestras today. Now, it seems the work of Mozart is also of medical relevance. A recent paper in Scientific Reports announces that one of Mozart's pieces -- the Sonata for Two Pianos in D Major K448 (known as known as Mozart K448) -- has the effect of calming the brains of people with epilepsy, alleviating certain harmful brain 'events.' (more)

Physicists detect signs of neutrinos at Large Hadron Collider
26 November 2021 - The international Forward Search Experiment team, led by physicists at the University of California, Irvine, has achieved the first-ever detection of neutrino candidates produced by the Large Hadron Collider at the CERN facility near Geneva, Switzerland. In a paper published today in the journal Physical Review D, the researchers describe how they observed six neutrino interactions during a pilot run of a compact emulsion detector installed at the LHC in 2018. (more)

Pandemic hobby grows into plan for Africa's largest photography library
25 November 2021 - Since the pandemic forced many U.S. bookshops to close or slash prices, Ghanaian New Yorker Paul Ninson has amassed 30,000 African photo books for a library he hopes will inspire the next generation of photographers back home. Ninson estimates that he now owns the world's largest collection of books with images taken in Africa or by photographers of African descent. Thanks to a $1 million crowdfunding windfall, he has already started shipping the trove to West Africa. (more)

Kongthong: The Indian village where your name is a song
24 November 2021 - Nestled amidst the verdant East Khasi Hills in the state of Meghalaya in India's remote north-east, the village of Kongthong is only accessible by a three-hour drive from the state capital, Shillong. The village is surrounded by magnificent high ridges and dizzyingly deep gorges. It's also home to a unique tradition called jingrwai iawbei, which has been flourishing here for centuries. According to this tradition, each newborn in Kongthong is assigned both a regular name and a distinct melodious tune at birth by their mother. (more)

'The woods next door': U.S. community forests take root
23 November 2021 - The U.S. is seeing a growing trend in green spaces governed by local residents, bringing conservation, educational benefits, and income to urban and rural communities. ... Forests owned by counties and towns in certain parts of the country have played vital roles for years, [Shelby Semmes, a director with the nonprofit Trust for Public Land] said, but the idea started gathering steam when the U.S. Forest Service program launched its community forest grants in 2012. (more)

Former petroleum engineer succeeds with organic farming in central Vietnam
23 November 2021 - A former petroleum engineer left the oil rigs in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, southern Vietnam in 2014 to pursue his farming passion. Now [Nguyen Van Nhan] is throwing himself into the fields in Quang Nam Province, located in the central part of the country. He makes a good living for himself, has a natural setting for his children, and hopes to spread his method to fellow farmers. (more)

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