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Heroes

Watch the final moments before Scotland's last coal plant shut down.

Hats off to the workers at Longannet power station.

"For the first time in more than a century, no power produced in Scotland will come from burning coal."

That's according to Hugh Finlay, the generation director for energy firm ScottishPower. The company's last coal-burning plant in the country, Longannet power station, closed on March 24, 2016, making Scotland one of the first nations in the world to officially end its reliance on the dirty energy source.


Photo by Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images.

“It was uneconomic to continue," a ScottishPower spokesperson told The Guardian, noting increased carbon taxes on the aging facility — once the largest in Europe — made operations increasingly costly.

This is a big deal for Scotland, which has its eyes set on a 100% clean energy future.

Scotland has big green goals, and it's not just talking the talk.

By 2020, Scotland wants all of its electricity demand to come from renewable sources, as CNBC reported. The funny thing is, they just might pull it off.

Europe's largest onshore wind farm (seen above) is located in Eaglesham, Scotland. Photo by Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images.

Data released last June showed half of Scotland's energy came from renewables in 2014 — up significantly from 2010, when that figure stood at just about 24%. The upward trend will only continue.

"Renewable energy is a central element of our strategy for a successful Scotland," Fergus Ewing, the country's minister for energy, enterprise, and tourism, wrote in a 2013 report. The country's efforts won't just be better for the planet, he noted — they'll boost job creation and investment opportunities as well.

But for the folks at Longannet power station, the closing was a bittersweet affair.

While prioritizing green energy creates jobs for the future, other roles are lost to a changing economy. And no one knows that better than the workers at Longannet.

“It’s been a great place to work — a great bunch of guys to work with,” one worker said in a video, seen below, that captured the moment the plant shut down. “I’ll miss the vibrancy of Longannet when I leave."

“Longannet has contributed more electricity for the national grid than any other power station in Scotland’s history," Finlay said in a statement."It is a sad day for everyone at ScottishPower."

More than 230 jobs will be lost due to the closure, and roughly 1,000 indirect jobs outside the plant could be affected, The Guardian reported.

Still, moving away from coal is something to celebrate because it's in all our best interests.

Our addiction to coal is a big contributor to our collective carbon footprint, which is the driving force behind climate change. Luckily, we're curbing our addiction.

Photo by Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images.

New data revealed at the UN's climate talks in Paris found 2015 could be the very first year global carbon emissions stalled — or even declined — during a period of economic growth. China — one of the world's biggest coal users — is moving away from its dirty energy habit, which is a big reason behind the benchmark.

"[China is] restructuring its economy," said Professor Corinne Le Quere of the University of East Anglia in the U.K., who led the study. "But there is also a contribution from the very fast growth in renewable energy worldwide."

As the team at Longannet knows well, going green can be tough. But Scotland is showing the world how it's done...

...one coal plant at a time.

Cheers* to a clean energy 2020.

*with Scotch, of course. GIF via "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy."

Nature

Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave that’s been closed for 70 years

You can only access the cave from the basement of the home and it’s open for business.

This Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave.

Have you ever seen something in a movie or online and thought, "That's totally fake," only to find out it's absolutely a real thing? That's sort of how this house in Pennsylvania comes across. It just seems too fantastical to be real, and yet somehow it actually exists.

The home sits between Greencastle and Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, and houses a pretty unique public secret. There's a cave in the basement. Not a man cave or a basement that makes you feel like you're in a cave, but an actual cave that you can't get to unless you go through the house.

Turns out the cave was discovered in the 1830s on the land of John Coffey, according to Uncovering PA, but the story of how it was found is unclear. People would climb down into the cave to explore occasionally until the land was leased about 100 years later and a small structure was built over the cave opening.

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Buffy Sainte-Marie shares what led to her openly breastfeeding on 'Sesame Street' in 1977

The way she explained to Big Bird what she was doing is still an all-time great example.

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In 1977, singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie did something revolutionary: She fed her baby on Sesame Street.

The Indigenous Canadian-Ameican singer-songwriter wasn't doing anything millions of other mothers hadn't done—she was simply feeding her baby. But the fact that she was breastfeeding him was significant since breastfeeding in the United States hit an all-time low in 1971 and was just starting to make a comeback. The fact that she did it openly on a children's television program was even more notable, since "What if children see?" has been a key pearl clutch for people who criticize breastfeeding in public.

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Oregon utilizes teen volunteers to run their YouthLine teen crisis hotline

“Each volunteer gets more than 60 hours of training, and master’s level supervisors are constantly on standby in the room.”

Oregon utilizes teen volunteers to man YouthLine teen crisis hotline

Editor's Note: If you are having thoughts about taking your own life, or know of anyone who is in need of help, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.

Mental health is a top-of-mind issue for a lot of people. Thanks to social media and people being more open about their struggles, the stigma surrounding seeking mental health treatment appears to be diminishing. But after the social and emotional interruption of teens due the pandemic, the mental health crises among adolescents seem to have jumped to record numbers.

PBS reports that Oregon is "ranked as the worst state for youth mental illness and access to care." But they're attempting to do something about it with a program that trains teenagers to answer crisis calls from other teens. They aren't alone though, as there's a master's level supervisor at the ready to jump in if the call requires a mental health professional.

The calls coming into the Oregon YouthLine can vary drastically, anywhere from relationship problems to family struggles, all the way to thoughts of self-harm and suicide. Teens manning the phones are provided with 60 hours of training and are taught to recognize when the call needs to be taken over by the adult supervisor.

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Mom shares her brutal experience with 'hyperemesis gravidarum' and other moms can relate

Hyperemesis gravidarum is a severe case of morning sickness that can last up until the baby is born and might require medical attention.

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Hyperemesis gravidarum isn't as common as regular morning sickness, but it's much more severe.

Morning sickness is one of the most commonly known and most joked about pregnancy symptoms, second only to peculiar food cravings. While unpleasant, it can often be alleviated to a certain extent with plain foods, plenty of fluids, maybe some ginger—your typical nausea remedies. And usually, it clears up on its own by the 20-week mark. Usually.

But sometimes, it doesn’t. Sometimes moms experience stomach sickness and vomiting, right up until the baby is born, on a much more severe level.

Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), isn’t as widely talked about as regular morning sickness, but those who go through it are likely to never forget it. Persistent, extreme nausea and vomiting lead to other symptoms like dehydration, fainting, low blood pressure and even jaundice, to name a few.

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