National Geographic
National Geographic 31 Aug 2020

Why Now is the Golden Age of Paleontology


With advancements in technology and access to areas once considered unreachable, the field of paleontology is experiencing a golden age of discovery. Roughly 50 new dinosaur species are found each year, giving us a closer look at their prehistoric world like never before. Our previous understandings of how dinosaurs looked and evolved are being revolutionized, especially in regards to evidence that modern birds descended from dinosaurs. But while it's exciting to see how incredibly far paleontology has come from the previous generations, it's equally as thrilling to imagine what new discoveries lie just ahead.

Volkan Bozkir, President of the 75th session of the General Assembly sends a message on the International Day of Education and Lifelong Learning.

"This International Day of Education and Lifelong Learning is like no other, as we contend with the greatest disruption to education in the history of the United Nations.  
Today, over 300 million students are out of school, and almost 1.6 billion learners have experienced a disruption in education as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  
I commend all teachers, who have adapted their classrooms and undertaken remote lessons in order to ensure continuity in education. I also applaud parents, who have done their utmost to facilitate learning at home.   
Above all, I am thinking of all students around the world who are struggling to learn at home, perhaps missing their friends, feeling frustrated or despondent about the future. Do not despair. You will get through this difficult period and you will pursue your dreams.  
It is up to the Member States to ensure this becomes a reality. We need to take urgent action in this Decade of Action and Delivery to invest in our education systems, including improving access to technology so that we can recover from this tumultuous period.   
If we are to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education for all, we need to build resilient, inclusive education systems that allow all students to return to school. To do so, we must meet the needs of those at risk of being left behind. Including children with disabilities and those living in conflict-affected areas, as well as the 11 million girls who are at risk of not re-entering the classroom.   
Now is the time to re-commit to education.    
I thank you".
The director of "Seven", "Fight Club" and "The Social Network" has made his latest, critically-acclaimed feature for streaming service Netflix: "Mank" transports us to the Hollywood of the screenwriter responsible for "Citizen Kane". Film critic Lisa Nesselson tells us why this stylish return to the Golden Age of cinema is a must-see today. We discuss a new ranking of the 21st century's best actors, tipping our respective caps to France's Isabelle Huppert.
Joint Press Conference by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres and the Chairperson of the African Union, Mr. Moussa Faki Mahamat, following the Fourth United Nations-African Union Conference.

Secretary-General António Guterres today (9 Dec) told reporters that the "immediate priority" in Ethiopia was "the well-being of the people of Tigray and ensuring those in need urgently receive humanitarian assistance," as well as " the swift resumption of the rule of law, in a secure environment and in full respect for human rights, paving the way for a true and lasting reconciliation."

Following his participation in the Fourth UN-AU Annual Conference, Guterres said, "together with our African Union partner, and others in the region, we stand ready to provide full support to Ethiopian-led initiatives to encourage inclusive dialogue and foster reconciliation."

The Secretary-General said, "this is the moment to have a serious discussion with the Ethiopian authorities" on those issues and added that in discussions with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed "there was a full acceptance by the Prime Minister of the need to move into that direction."

Responding to a question from a reporter, Guterres said, "we have no proof of the presence of Eritrean troops inside Ethiopia," and noted that he had "confronted" Ahmed with that question and he had "guaranteed to me that they have not entered Tigrayan territory, that the only area where they are is the area that corresponded to the disputed territory within the two country that in the peace agreement was decided to give back to Eritrea."

On the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Secretary-General reiterated his call for a vaccine "to be a global public good available to everyone, everywhere and particularly, available in Africa."

He said, "most African countries lack the financing to adequately respond to the crisis, due in part to declining demand and prices of their commodity exports."

Guterres said, "if Africa is not properly supported, we will not be able to fight the pandemic anywhere effectively," and "the only way" is to ensure that the COVAX initiative is financed."

He encouraged "everybody that has access to the vaccine to be vaccinated," adding that "it is a service not only that we provide to ourselves, each one of us being vaccinated provides a service to the whole community, because we are no longer spreading. There is no risk of spreading the disease. So, vaccination is for me a moral obligation in relation to all of us."

Africa has so far registered more than 2,200,000 cases and over 53,000 deaths from COVID-19.
Around 390,000 new humans are born every day. So, on a planet with dwindling resources and an increasing strain on natural systems… is curbing our booming population the key to solving our environmental woes?

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