We were thrilled to see that National Geographic made the list of top 10 Instagram accounts earlier this year with its breathtaking photos of wildlife and landscapes. Despite being nudged out of the top 10 this month (by a sports highlights feed), NatGeo’s photographs are always thought provoking and beautiful. Visit Instagram to see NatGeo’s latest.
Great news from the Galapagos Conservancy: A tortoise believed to have been extinct for more than 100 years was found alive on the island of Fernandina in the Galapagos. The adult female—at least a century old—was discovered by conservationists recently and taken to a breeding center on the nearby island of Santa Cruz for more study. Visit CNN for its story on the miraculous find, and follow the Twitter thread on why this elderly tortoise was taken into captivity, and what the future holds for her species.
At long last, and with the urging of the National Parks Conservation Association, Congress just passed the biggest (bipartisan) conservation bill in years. The new law protects two million acres of parks and public lands, including parts of Yellowstone, Acadia, Shiloh, and Death Valley, plus, the Land and Water Conservation Act was also reauthorized. Check out NPCA’s tweet outlining this good news for all Americans. And go to NPCA’s website for a full report.
Finally, some good news on gun control: Brady announced the passage of HR8—a law that expands Brady background checks before gun purchases, and a position on which 97% of Americans agree. Now it’s on to the U.S. Senate. For details, see Brady’s Twitter feed.!
DC-based Society for Science & the Public announced it’s awarding $120,000 in STEM Action and Research grants to 35 middle and high school science teachers in 23 states across the country to support research activities in their classrooms. Technically DC has the story, so visit its website to learn more about the Society’s generosity that will change lives.
On March 1, Yellowstone Forever wished a happy 147th birthday to Yellowstone National Park with a fascinating history of Yellowstone. The park was founded in 1872 by President Ulysses S. Grant as a natural curiosity, and to this day, holds a collection of more than 10,000 hydrothermal features—more than the rest of the world combined. It’s also home to the largest concentration of wildlife in the lower 48, and the only place in the country where bison have lived continuously since prehistoric times. Visit Yellowstone Forever’s website for all the details.
Boston’s Pine Street Inn has proposed building the largest-ever housing development in Boston for people who have been chronically homeless. Pine Street President and Executive Director Lyndia Downie says housing is the “key ingredient” for these people. “It doesn’t mean that life is perfect and it doesn’t mean they don’t have lots of things they’re still struggling with. But it does mean we can work on those things from a stable and safe place for people.” To learn more about this initiative and those it will help, visit Pine Street’s website.
At Society for Science and the Public’s gala held in March, the Regeneron Science Talent Search awarded $1.8 million to 40 high school seniors for their mind-blowing scientific ideas. These kids are way beyond the local science fair—solving real-world problems with their incredible discoveries. Ana Humphrey took home the top prize of $250,000 for her mathematical model to determine the possible locations of planets outside our solar system that may have been missed by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope. Visit SSP’s website for more details on Ana’s discovery, as well as descriptions of the incredible projects by all of the winners.
More exciting events and news…
A National Museum of the American Indian exhibit highlights epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women; Rainforest Action Network and DC activists demand that Chase stop funding climate change; The Kennedy Center Arts Summit returns in April; The National Air and Space Museum was featured in Google Arts & Culture Interactive online exhibit and announces sponsorship for Apollo 50th celebrations.