Studies show that even just thinking positively can increase emotions such as happiness – it’s also good for the immune system and can reduce anxiety. Researchers have found that positivity is good for the heart and that people with a family history of heart disease, who also have a positive outlook, are one-third less likely to have a heart attack than those with a negative outlook.
With that in mind, here’s our latest round-up of good news stories to keep you healthy and happy this week.
- Many countries are kicking goals with their COVID vaccination rates, while others – particularly those with low economic status – are being left behind. But, in good news for African nations, the African Union has recently announced
that it has pooled resources with the Caribbean to secure 400 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson single-shot vaccine. This milestone agreement will enable a third of the continent to be immunised by the end of the year.
- We’ve talked about people becoming more mindful of their physical and mental wellbeing during the pandemic, and a new report suggests we’re taking better care of our financial health too. According to a poll of 2,000 gen Y and gen Z North Americans, 58 per cent of respondents have created new savings goals, while almost 60 per cent say they’re more financially confident now than pre-pandemic.
- Some of the world’s most prolific cities are ramping up their efforts to ‘go green’. In Barcelona, citizens who sell their private vehicles are rewarded with free, unlimited public transport for three years. Since the initiative began in 2017, the city has provided over 12,000 metro tickets, with 729 applications received last November alone. Paris
is likewise pushing to rid itself of cars, by opening linear parks on old highways along the Seine, phasing out diesel cars, opening bus lanes, raising parking meter prices and introducing more bike lanes. Meanwhile, one of London’s busiest streets has gone car-free this month, with a section of the Strand closed off to traffic to make way for a pop-up skate park. Over time, it will be transformed into a recreational, pedestrianised space.
- Here’s one for both soccer fans and environmentalists: the English Premier League has just hosted the world’s first net-zero game. The London derby recently played between rivals Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea presented spectators with an entirely vegan menu (think beetroot burgers and tofu katsu curry, rather than meat pies) at Tottenham’s new £850-million stadium, which is run exclusively on green energy and carbon-neutral gas. It also features an organic pitch, waterless urinals, a reusable cup scheme and a ‘zero to landfill’ waste management scheme. Any direct emissions from the day were offset by projects that support community reforestation in East Africa and create new native woodlands in the UK. A win for the environment (but not Tottenham, who lost the match 3–0).
- You might need to read this one twice: a herd of mountain goats have been recruited in County Dublin, Ireland, to reduce the risk of wildfire. Yes, following a fire-filled summer, conservationists have placed 25 Old Irish Goats atop the hills of Howth Head to eat, and therefore control, the gorse-covered landscape, which causes fires to spread. They’ll be free to roam where they choose (within reason), unhampered by fences but tracked by GPS devices. To make the story even more exciting, this species is critically endangered, and it’s hoped the project could help stave off extinction, once the current herd of females and kids is joined by a few males.
- In more animal news, Chinese wildlife authorities have created a ‘food court’ for elephants: a 670,000 m2 area filled with elephant delicacies, like banana trees and saltwater ponds, near Jinghong in Yunnan province. The idea came to life after a herd of elephants left their habitat earlier this year, trekking 500 km to reach the outskirts of the provincial capital Kunming – causing a whole lot of chaos and destruction along the way. Not only will the project improve the elephants’ habitat and diet, but it’s also hoped it will keep them out of farmers’ crops (and future trouble).
That’s it from us this week – but remember to keep looking out for happy stories – they’ll do you the world of good.
– The Coach Place Global
Image by @ollila
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