Sea life protection in Barbados, Billie Eilish and Phoebe Bridgers duet, and more happy news from the week

7 mins
16 Dec 2022
Sea life protection in Barbados, Billie Eilish and Phoebe Bridgers duet, and more happy news from the week

Just a bunch of great news to end the week on...

image Sharon Dow / Getty

words Rhys Thomas

Another week ticked off, congratulations. The festive season is well and truly in sight! Whether that means parties and gifting, or just resting and recharging, we wish you a good time doing it. For something to warm the heart and mind in preparation, here's a load of good news from the week.

Science news

Lysando AG has come up with something that might be the new and improved antibiotic. It’s called Artilysin®. It contains antimicrobial proteins that works like antibiotics but seems to be able to get rid of bacteria that has become resistant to antibiotics. This is huge news because antibiotic resistance has been called one of the biggest threat to humans by the World Health Organisation.

Glitter is great, but it has often not been good for the planet. UNTIL NOW! That's right, you can thank the University of Saskatchewan for the good glitter. It’s biodegradable, edible, and sparkles by using light-reflecting shapes, which is very cool.

A 13-year-old has been given the all-clear from leukaemia thanks to a world-first use of a new cell engineering treatment. The cancer was at a stage where if this didn’t work it would have been terminal.

Scientists have created a model vagina by growing cells inside silicone rubber “chips”. The achievement might allow us to test and understand the effects of bacteria on vaginal health and possibly treatments for bacterial vaginosis.

The science news of the moment is that the US has made a massive breakthrough when it comes to creating nuclear fusion. Physicists have been trying to create nuclear fusion for decades, as it could provide near-limitless clean energy. It’s the same process that powers the sun. There’s still a long way to go, but the breakthrough did generate a little bit of power, which shows they are on the right track.

You know when you want to borrow a phone charger but you ask someone if you can borrow their charger and they say yes because they’re nice but it turns out their charger is different to yours? That all ends in 2024, in theory. On December 28 (so just over two year’s time) the European Union is making it law for every single phone to be chargeable via USB-C.

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Culture news

Style icon and general icon Billie Eilish has collaborated with Nike to create an Air Force 1. Her AF1 is a low-top with two colour variations: mushroom and sequoia. They’re patchwork, minimal, very cool, and can be bought on Billie’s own store. The photoshoot is great too.

Supreme has linked up with Singer, the iconic sewing machine makers. We think it’s nice because you can get the Supreme drip and fix old clothing! It’s a computerised SINGER® SP68, just fyi.

Little Simz surprised and delighted us all with a new album NO THANK YOU. The announcement for her fifth album came just days earlier. The record is ten tracks full of bassy production and cultural commentary in that direct candid flow that makes Simz one of the best UK rappers of all time.

Jacquemus said: enough snow, let’s all dress in short bright colourful things and massive hats and manifest a beautiful spring. Not literally, but that was more-or-less the talk to the catwalk from its Spring 2023 show: Raphia. Lots of hay, Central Cee in lots of colour, Pamela Anderson in some absolutely massive hats. A smash.

More immediate fashion inspiration (and ideas for very very generous gifts), Gucci and Adidas are back with a load of gear for the snow. The après-ski collection is full of pastel shades, big logos, and puffed-up cosy jackets.

Billie Eilish brought Phoebe Bridgers on stage at her Los Angeles’ Kia Forum gig this week. They dueted Bridgers’ song Motion Sickness as part of the final three shows of Billie's tour-packed year. Labrinth also performed a song from the Euphoria soundtrack.

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Wellness news

When we exercise we release dopamine, but a study from The University of Pennsylvania has shown that our gut health can affect how much lovely dopamine we receive. Essentially good gut health can make us feel that post-pump goodness even more!

If you’re born in 2009 or more recently, you will never be able to buy cigarettes in New Zealand, thanks to a new law. The law is designed to try and make New Zealand completely smoke free. They’re also decreasing the number of stores that can sell tobacco by 90%. A breath of fresh air, in theory.

French President Emmanuel Macron has decided to make condoms free to everyone aged 18-25 in France. The idea is that it may help reduce unwanted pregnancies in the country. The contraceptive method will be available in pharmacies. France also offers free birth control to all women under 25.

Adele told the crowd at one of her residency concerts in Las Vegas that when going through her divorce from Simon Konecki, she “was basically having, like, five therapy sessions a day” and that she is going back to therapy again now as she feels she needs to. Adele is admirable for a lot of reasons, but her candid approach to speaking about therapy is great.

Controlled doses of ketamine combined with therapy looks like it has the potential to be an effective form of treatment for a variety of mental health issues. The University of Exeter are currently trialling the idea with regard to treating alcohol addiction.

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People news

President Macron is also a fan of McDonald’s. Specifically, the French McDonald’s use of reusable containers instead of single-use packaging for its food. These include sturdy plastic tubs for fries, and glasses for drinks. He quote-retweeted the packaging on Twitter.

Can you believe that it hasn’t been a week since England lost to France in the World Cup quarter finals? Well, it hasn’t. A standout moment during the game was when Jude Bellingham yet again showed his potential leadership qualities and unprecedented maturity by running up to Harry Kane to console him after the striker and England captain missed his second penalty in the game.

Barbados has become the third Caribbean country this year to reverse conservative laws that criminalise gay sex. The laws have rarely been invoked recently, but the fact that they technically existed suggested the country tolerated a discriminatory stance against the LGBTQ+ communities.

President Biden has signed a bill to protect same-sex marriage rights in the USA. The ‘Respect for Marriage Act’ came into law on Tuesday and it means the concept of marriage only really being officially valid between “man and woman” is no more.

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Animal news

Barbados is getting access to $50m in funding for conservation of its entire marine ecosystem. This will help the country to protect as much as 30% of its seas. The conservation work is called “Blue Bonds” and it was a huge part of the success of saving marine life in the Seychelles.

Conservationists have realised that tropical forests in Borneo are still way more biodiverse than pristine forests (normal ones like the ones we have in the UK) despite being wrecked. It means more attention might be dedicated to working with what has been left of ruined forests than just assuming all hope is lost

Scientists have finally found the clit on female snakes. And it turns out snakes have two of them (technically it’s called a hemiclitoris). Previously the world of science had mistaken a snake's clitoris for a gland or an underdeveloped penis, and was present on all of the nine species of snake they have examined. [Megan Folwell from the University of Adelaide](Scientists finally found the clitoris on snakes – and there are two) and her colleagues discovered them.

Jazzy the dog ran away from her family in Texas, but seven years later they have been reunited. Jazzy actually ended up all the way in Florida, 800 miles away from her home. She remembered her family the moment she saw them.

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