Welcome to our good news newsletter, like every week, we bring you a list of positive stories selected by our team so you can find out about what is going well in the world.
Today’s stories include:
Why the Webb telescope will change the course of science.The Spanish government will offer free trains from September.A study that concluded that exercising over the weekend is enough to keep fit,The project of the Netherlands to convert telecommuting a legal right. The first community elephant sanctuary.
Click on the video above to learn more about each story, or continue reading below…
1. Why the Webb telescope will change the course of science.
Astronomers say they have seen “the dawn of a new era” after NASA released data and first images from the new James Webb Space Telescope.
Webb shows us galaxies teeming with billions of stars and stellar nurseries, the clouds of dust and gas in which new stars form.
But the images are much more than just spectacular.
The telescope opens up an impressive panorama of the cosmos, with the deepest and sharpest infrared images of the distant universe to date, and goes further than the Hubble Telescope (which has been astronomers’ window into space for the past 30 years) ) could do.
The Webb Telescope is the largest and most powerful space observatory ever built. It allows us to access the very birth of the cosmos and galaxies that originated more than 13,000 million years ago.
Astronomers say that thanks to the new telescope the jump in the growth of our understanding of the universe will be as great as it was with the Hubble telescope, which is really saying a lot.
Hubb will help them better understand our solar system, black holes, the evolution of stars and exoplanets… to search for closer and potentially habitable worlds.
The project is the result of the combined efforts of some 20,000 engineers, astronomers and technicians over 30 years, with a budget of nearly $10 billion.
2. The Spanish government will offer free trains from September.
In a new plan to combat rising inflation and the energy crisis aggravated by the war in Ukraine, the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, has announced that most short- and medium-distance trains will be completely free this autumn.
All commuter trains and most of Renfe’s medium-distance regional lines will be free from September 1 to December 31.
Details have not yet been published, but the offer applies to multi-trip and monthly passes, the cost of which will be refunded. This could mean that train travel between cities like Madrid and Salamanca or Seville and Granada will be free if you purchase a season ticket.
In June, a 50% discount on Renfe train tickets for this period had already been announced, in an effort to relieve passengers. But, after reviewing the country’s financial situation, President Sánchez has decided that the trips will be completely free for four months.
The banknotes will be financed with a new extraordinary tax on banks and energy companies, which have benefited enormously from the rise in interest rates and energy prices.
In a similar move, a month ago Germany introduced a €9 monthly transport pass to help citizens facing the cost of living crisis.
It is said that more than 20 million people have bought the subscription. And now the government is thinking of introducing a “climate ticket”, which would introduce permanent fare measures to make local public transport more attractive.
3. A study that concluded that exercising on the weekend is enough to stay fit.
My colleagues at Next, the future-focused section of Euronews, have reported a happy new finding that focusing exercise over the weekend is just as good as spreading activity throughout the week.
In the experiments, US researchers followed more than 350,000 people over 10 years to see how people who only exercised in one or two sessions over the weekend, called “weekend warriors,” fared. of week”.
The starting point was the World Health Organization recommendation: adults should perform at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week. Such as going for a walk or a gentle bike ride.
Many of the study participants did the 150 minutes throughout the week, and others concentrated on one or two sessions over the weekend.
The results of the study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest that as long as you get the recommended amount of exercise per week, it doesn’t matter when or what you do.
4. The Dutch project to make teleworking a legal right
The Dutch Parliament has passed a law to establish working from home as a legal right, making the Netherlands one of the first countries in the world to grant teleworking by law.
Under current Dutch law, employers can refuse workers’ requests to work from home without giving a reason. But if this new legislation passes the Senate, it will force employers to consider applications and provide explanations if they are rejected.
“For employers, this is also a good law. Because a happy employee is a happy employer,” Steven van Weyenberg, co-author of the bill, said in a statement.
Working from home was already popular in the Netherlands before the pandemic: 28% of Dutch people worked remotely, one of the highest rates in the European Union.
5. The first community elephant sanctuary
Have you ever thought about adopting an elephant?
This is Lorian, an orphaned elephant living in the world’s first community-owned elephant sanctuary.
She was rescued by the Samburu, an indigenous tribe in Kenya who have a deep respect for the wildlife with whom they share the land and its resources.
The tribe saw how elephant calves in northern Kenya were often orphaned or abandoned due to drought, humans, or simply natural causes.
So they turned to the local government and the Kenya Wildlife Service.
Authorities saw local communities get involved in rescuing the animals, rehabilitating and releasing elephants back into the wild. So they supported them to create the first community-owned elephant sanctuary.
Yan, the video editor of this Good News recap, adopted Lorian a year ago to help finance his rehabilitation and release. You could too.
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