People all over the world are working harder than ever to make the world a better place, as we slowly recover from the global pandemic. There are numerous simple ways to help people around you, as well as the environment. Take a look back at some of the good things that have happened this year. This part brings up news from Europe and South America.
An 110-year-old woman became famous overnight when her great-grandson uploaded a video of her singing on TikTok. The woman, named Amy Hawkins, has been singing since she was a young girl over 100 years ago. She dreamed of pursuing a career in singing but was not allowed by her mother. "Reading the comments, people have been in tears, because they miss their family or about the family they have lost." Amy Hawkins' granddaughter Hannah Freeman said about the video.
After being closed for over 40 years, the eminent museum of Pompeii “Antiquarium” is being reopened. With Pompeii being the most visited archaeological site in the world, the museum displays everyday items such as statues, cooking utensils, jewelry and other artifacts. One section of the museum even includes casts made from bodies of people and animals who died in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius.
A french company called Cycloponics is making use of empty parking garages, by turning them into organic mushroom farms. The company specialises in turning unused urban ground into a place for organic food production. “70% of people live in towns today, and in this population there is a demand for local and organic products like ours,” says the company CEO.
The Dutch artist and designer Daan Roosegaarde has created a spectacular light show in the middle of a leek field, using LED light beams. Roosegaarde, as an artist, is well known for combining different elements to merge science with art. The show is called GROW and is based on scientific evidence that specific light spectrum combinations have a positive effect on growing crops. At night, the fields light up in shades of red and blue and act both asan artwork and a catalyst.
37 years ago, retired postman Recep Mirzan found an injured female swan in a field. To help heal her broken wing he let her live on his farm until her health had been restored. Once the wing had healed, the two had become best friends and have been living together ever since. She was given the name Garip which translates to “bizarre” and can be used to describe those who are unlucky. Truly, their friendship is swan in a million!
Peru is planning to plant one million trees in order to protect ancient city Machu Picchu. Due to an increase of heavy winter rains and summer fires, the environmental department knew that something had to be done to protect the irreplaceable city. By planting trees, the strong roots help hold the soil in its place during rain to protect against mudslides and fires. The foliage also has the ability to act as a protecting wall against fires.
Bogota-based company Woodpecker has invented a new type of housing made from coffee production waste. One of the residues from coffee production is the husk, a thin, paper-like skin surrounding the coffee bean. The husk is combined with recycled plastic in order to create a strong, light-weight material which can be used for building homes, sheds and much more. If nothing was done, large amounts of coffee husk would end up in landfills, where it would be burnt and cause harmful methane emission. Woodpecker has created a good solution to the Colombian housing problems; with an environmentally friendly side-effect.
Nine years ago, 24 tail vertebrae from a giant dinosaur were discovered in Argentina. After extensive research, archaeologists have now come to the conclusion that the newly discovered dinosaur surely competed size-wise with the largest known dinosaurs. No load-bearing bones were discovered, which makes it much harder to estimate the size of the dinosaur. Scientists agree that it may have been the largest to ever exist on Earth.
A gemologist named Lucas Fassari was working in the Rio Grande do Sul region of Brazil, when he discovered a truly unique agate gemstone. From the outside, it has an ordinary shape, colour and size but on the inside it reveals a secret. It has a striking similarity to Sesame Street's beloved“cookie monster” character. A round, blue face, wide smile and two round eyes. Two of the most famous natural agate stones include one looking like a scared face and another looking like an owl perched on a branch.