Eddy's Good News: How plants can be saved from droughts & an endangered species makes a comeback?!

Virgin Radio

6 Sep 2022, 09:18

Credit: goodnewsnetwork.org

Every day during his show on Virgin Radio, Eddy Temple-Morris brings you Good News stories from around the world, to help inject a bit of positivity into your day!Be sure to listen each day between 10am and 1pm (Monday - Friday) to hear Eddy's Good News stories (amongst the finest music of course), but if you miss any of them you can catch up on the transcripts of Eddy's most recent stories below:

Tuesday 6th September 2022

Fascinating news from Japan and a new study into how we can make plants survive droughts and the answer they’ve come up with is…get them a bit drunk!

Say konichiwa to a team of botanists working on how to make food crops more resistant to drought, because global heating is seriously affecting more and more countries and the plants they grow. One answer could be genetics - modifying plants to grow bigger root systems, or modify their genes to do things like close their stomata (the holes in their leaves) so they can retain more moisture, but The RIKEN centre for sustainable resource science in japan have come up with a way to naturally encourage drought hardiness and, surprisingly, it’s to give them a bit of ethanol - that’s pure alcohol. Ethanol makes plants close their stomata without any genetic jiggery pokery. In their tests 75% of plants who were a bit smashed survived a two week drought compared to only 5% of the sober ones and farmers have more benefits: increased crop yields in dry conditions plus the benefit that their slightly pissed plants don’t demand a kebab on the way home.

Via: goodnewsnetwork.org

Credit: bbc.co.uk

Say hello to Loxodonta Cyclotis, the Forest Elephant, as distinct from Loxodonta Africana, the savanna elephant we are more used to sweeping majestically across the serengeti.

Thanks to TAFKANIA on twitter who alerted me to this, as we go to Gabon, where the rare forest elephant is enjoying a wonderful comeback.

These guys were hunted  - as they all are for their ivory - almost to extinction. There were only a few hundred left when the brilliantly named Omar Bongo, the president of Gabon, set up a network of national parks to protect the country’s rainforest and these awesome pachyderms that live in it, in 2002. A few years later the population grew above 1000, by 2016 the forest elephant population had grown to over 7,000 and because of the parks, anti-poaching efforts and the positivity that came for nature from the pandemic, the Forest Elephant population in Gabon has swelled to 95,000. They remain a shining example of how we turn things around.

Via: bbc.co.uk