10th August 2018

Other Stories - 10th August 2018

Photograph: Gik

An entire city in Australia has been protected against dengue fever. Researchers are celebrating after Townsville, a city in Queensland, has been dengue-fever-free since 2014. The team released captive-bred mosquitos carrying Wolbachia, a bacterium that stops dengue transmission, into the city in the hope that they would breed with local mosquitos. It worked – the virus has been wiped out – and the team now has plans to release the Wolbachia mosquitos into Yogyakarta in Indonesia, which has a population of nearly 390,000 residents. BBC News

Wearing poor-quality sunglasses could be worse than wearing none at all. That’s what experts are warning amid the UK’s current heatwave. Fight for Sight, an eye research charity, explained that dark sunglasses make our pupils increase to let in more light. In doing so, they also make your eyes take in more UV rays. The advice is to look for sunglasses that claim to block out UV rays and have the CE logo, which guarantees that they meet European standards for sun protection. Sky News

A Roman library has been discovered in Germany. It might not seem the most likely place to find 1,850-year-old Roman ruins, but that’s exactly what construction workers uncovered while digging foundations for a new community centre next to a famous cathedral in Cologne. Measuring 65-feet long and 30-feet wide, archaeologists believe the room will have held up to 20,000 scroll parchments, putting it in the same category as the Library of Celsus in Ephesus, Turkey. The Washington Post

You’ll soon be able to buy trainers made from discarded plastic. Made by Spanish fashion label Ecoalf, each pair of trainers is made from five plastic bottles found in the Mediterranean Sea. What’s more, no waste is created during the production process. The company collects plastic waste from the ocean floor and transforms it into a yarn that’s used to weave the upper part of the shoes. It is just one of 250 materials created by Ecoalf from waste, with other products made from fishing nets, coffee grounds and already-used cotton and wool. Sky News

Apple has just set a new world record. It has become the world’s first public company to be worth $1 trillion (£767 bn). Following its report of better-than-expected figures for the three months to June, Apple has seen its market value rise and finally reach a peak on Thursday when its shares closed at $207.39. BBC News

Opt-out organ donation could be in place by 2020. If Parliament approves Max’s Law, doctors will presume an adult is happy to donate their organs unless they have opted out. The new system could replace the old one by 2020 and save 700 lives a year. Max’s Law is named after a boy called Max Johnson whose life was saved by a heart transplant following a well-documented search for a suitable donor. BBC News

Blue wine is on sale on France. The country famous for frog legs, cheese and croissants now has wines in all three of its flag colours after a blue wine has come to the market. It’s a white chardonnay that gets its blue hue after being passed through the pulp of red grape skins, which contain a natural blue colouring found in raspberries, blueberries, black soybeans and other fruits and vegetables. The aptly named Vindigo wine costs €12 a bottle and has notes of blackberry and passion fruit. The Guardian

A boa constrictor has been photographed eating a pigeon in London. Leytonstone residents got a shock this weekend when they spotted the snake wrapped around a pigeon killing it for a meal. The RSPCA was called to the scene and the snake was taken to a nearby wildlife centre. It isn’t clear how the animal found itself on the streets of East London, but the RSPCA has suggested it could be an escaped or abandoned pet. Sky News

Nutella is looking for some new tasters. Fan of the chocolate hazelnut spread? The brand is looking for new taste testers to make sure its product lines are up to scratch. Demanding just four hours over two days and based in a small town called Alba in Italy, the lucky applicants really will be living the dream. The Mirror

 Stat of the week

11,000 more grammar school places have been created for pupils in England and Wales over the past eight years. That’s the equivalent of 24 extra schools. A new £50m growth fund has been announced by the government in May, but grammar schools will only be eligible if they improve access for poorer pupils. BBC News


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