Good News Headlines 2/1/2023
Cancer Plummets, Guinea Worm Eradicated, Bye-Bye Ebola—3 Huge Wins For Humanity
by Andy Corbley, Good News Network
2022 saw major advances, and even victories in the efforts to combat several diseases, from industrialized to tropical ones. Starting at home, a study last year found that US cancer deaths had declined by 33% since 1991. This is equivalent to around 3.8 million people alive thanks to various efforts to combat the disease family. The report was authored by the American Cancer Society, and published in the journal CA. American Cancer Society CEO Karen Knudsen called the drop “truly formidable,” while the report attributed the fall to the development of better treatments, the reduction in smoking habits, and earlier detection methods.
First Commercial-Scale Nuclear Fuel Recycling Facility Being Developed
by Paige Bennett, EcoWatch
Oklo, a California-based energy startup, has submitted its licensing project plan for a commercial-scale nuclear fuel recycling facility to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The fuel recycling facility will be the first of its kind and is meant to make use of nuclear waste, which still has up to 90% of its energy content that could be used to meet energy needs in the U.S. The submitted licensing project plan outlines the company’s “pre-application engagement activities” ahead of licensing for the fuel recycling facility. The company’s fuel recycling facility would be capable of recycling used nuclear fuel from its own reactors as well as reactors from other companies.
This Maine Home Can Stay 70 Degrees Without A Furnace, Even When It’s Freezing Outside
by Keith Shortall, Maine Public
What if you could design a house that on a cold day in January would stay at 70 degrees inside — without running the furnace? Or even having a furnace? It’s already being done. In fact, what’s known as the Passivhaus concept came to the United States in 2006, and is being used to construct buildings throughout the U.S. Maine Public recently visited a passive house in the town of Hope to find out how it works — and what it costs. While it was 31 degrees outside, the inside was much cozier. “It’s about 70 degrees in here,” McCunney, who is a mechanical engineer, says. “And once you set that temperature the house, because of its airtightness and amount of insulation, it maintains that temperature pretty efficiently.”
Biden Reinstates Logging Ban In America’s Largest National Forest
by Chris D’Angelo, HuffPost
The Biden administration on Wednesday followed through on its commitment to ban commercial logging and other development across more than 9 million acres of Alaska’s Tongass National Forest — the nation’s largest national forest. In a statement announcing the new rule, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said Tongass “is key to conserving biodiversity and addressing the climate crisis.” “Restoring roadless protections listens to the voices of Tribal Nations and the people of Southeast Alaska while recognizing the importance of fishing and tourism to the region’s economy.” The announcement is the latest in a decades-long tug of war over the future of the region.
Researchers Find A Way To Destroy PFAS
by Paige Bennett, EcoWatch
Researchers from Clarkson University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology have improved upon a method designed to break down per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), a group of synthetic chemicals that have been linked to health issues and environmental pollution. PFAS, also called forever chemicals, do not break down. Scientists have developed a technique to grind PFAS with metal balls and additives in a contained space. But this technique typically uses potassium hydroxide (KOH), which is corrosive and can cause clumping. Aside from this newer technique, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recommended destroying PFAS through incineration.