A selection of positive news from around the world this week.
Brazil declares end of Zika public health emergency
E ighteen months after it was declared, Brazil’s health ministry has put an end to the public health emergency related to the Zika virus after having reported a 95% reduction in the number of cases during the first four months of this year. Nonetheless, Brazilian authorities have said they will keep active measures to decrease the number of mosquitoes carrying the virus as well as surveillance programmes and assistance to affected families.
Big Data platform to help farmers weather harsh climates
A new initiative backed by the likes of IBM and Amazon will put the power of information to work for small farmers in developing economies by offering them information on crops, weather and soil conditions. The CGIAR Platform for Big Data in Agriculture aims to help producers adapt to volatile rain patterns, drought frequency and rising temperatures, and could capitalise on the spread of smartphones by offering real-time information via text.
3D-printed ovaries may provide solution to infertility
Infertile mice which were given a 3D-printed ‘ovarian bioprosthesis’ have successfully given birth to healthy pups. The study marks a significant steps towards creating artificial ovaries for human beings, which would allow women whose reproductive systems have been damaged by cancer treatment to still give birth.
The world’s first clean energy refugee camp
Twenty thousand Syrian refugees now have their electricity provided by solar power, after Jordan’s Azraq refugee camp became the first to be powered by renewable energy. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the project will save $1.5 million, which the agency hopes can be used to improve other aspects of the camp.
Educating boys away from Boko Haram
Traditionally, ‘Almajiris’ was the name given to boys sent to boarding schools across northern Nigeria for an Islamic education, where a neglected education system made them vulnerable for recruitment by the jihadi group Boko Haram. Now a programme supported by the American University of Nigeria hopes to change that by educating the boys and providing them with refuge.