1. Half the world became free of war.
2. Global life expectancy is more than double what it was in 1770.
3. The hole in the ozone layer has shown signs of healing for the first time.
4. A British guy went to space, where he drank tea and ate bacon sandwiches and was just generally reassuring.
5. Sri Lanka eliminated malaria.
6. And malaria is on the wane worldwide.
7. One of the world's most endangered birds, the hilarious kakapo, is now far less endangered.
8. We learned that fewer and fewer children are dying.
9. Gun violence in the US has stayed historically low.
10. Beavers are back in Scotland and doing well.
11. The number of AIDS deaths was way down.
12. Fewer people are starving. In fact, for the first time, more people are obese than are underweight.
13. More children got an education than ever before.
14. Global carbon dioxide emissions have stopped going up.
15. Israel has made large-scale desalinisation work, meaning that water is cheaply available in one of the driest parts of the world.
16. And most importantly, all the turtles in that bit that made everyone cry in Planet Earth II were rescued.
Tom Chivers is a science writer for BuzzFeed and is based in London.
Contact Tom Chivers at email@example.com.
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