2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • Some fear auto industry returning to bad habits
    Some fear auto industry returning to bad habits

    Big discounts. Six- or seven-year loans, in some cases to buyers who would have been turned down in the past. As the auto industry strives to sustain its post-recession comeback, car companies are resorting ...

  • Scientists use E.coli bacteria to create fossil fuel alternative
    Scientists use E.coli bacteria to create fossil fuel alternative

    British and Finnish scientists have found a way of generating renewable propane using a bacterium widely found in the human intestine and say the finding is a step to commercial production of a fuel that could one day be an alternative to fossil fuel reserves. "Although we have only produced tiny amounts so far, the fuel we have produced is ready to be used in an engine straight away," said Patrik Jones of the department of life sciences at Imperial College London, who worked on the research. He said while work is at a very early stage, possibly 5-10 years from the point where commercial production would be possible, his team's findings were proof of concept for a way of producing renewable fuel now only accessible from fossil reserves. It is already produced as a by-product during natural gas processing and petrol refining, but both of these are fossil fuels that will one day run out.

  • If millennials are jerks, blame the baby boomers
    If millennials are jerks, blame the baby boomers

    Young adults might be self-absorbed and fragile, but they had to get that from somebody.

  • School starts in Chicago with more safety guards
    School starts in Chicago with more safety guards

    CHICAGO (AP) — School opened in Chicago on Tuesday, with children and parents making their way past security guards whose bright neon vests served as a reminder of the city's efforts to protect students from the violence that plagues its streets.

  • Putin orders building hastened at new Russian spaceport

    By Vladimir Soldatkin VOSTOCHNY Russia (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday ordered construction sped up on a multi-billion-dollar spaceport in Russia's Far East that he said would break reliance on the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and launch future missions to the Moon and Mars. Putin flew in a helicopter over the sprawling building site in Vostochny at a time when conflict with Ukraine, maker of Zenit and Dnepr rockets, is highlighting the fragility of Russia's dependence on former Soviet republics in defense and space. Building a new launchpad on its own soil is central to Putin's effort to reform a once-pioneering space industry hobbled by years of budget cuts and a brain drain in the 1990s. "Our own space infrastructure and modern network of cosmodromes ... will allow Russia to strengthen its standing as a leading space superpower and guarantee the independence of space activities," Putin said at Vostochny, near Russia's border with China.

  • World 'losing battle' to contain Ebola
    World 'losing battle' to contain Ebola

    International medical agency Medecins sans Frontieres said the world was "losing the battle" to contain Ebola as the United Nations warned of severe food shortages in the hardest-hit countries. Leaders are failing to come to grips with this transnational threat," said MSF international president Joanne Liu. "The (World Health Organization) announcement on August 8 that the epidemic constituted a 'public health emergency of international concern' has not led to decisive action, and states have essentially Her comments came as a third American health worker tested positive for the deadly virus while working with patients in Liberia, the worst-hit country.

  • AP Analysis: Putin digs in for long Ukraine fight
    AP Analysis: Putin digs in for long Ukraine fight

    MOSCOW (AP) — Riding a wave of military gains by Russia-backed rebels, President Vladimir Putin has made it exceedingly clear that he wants a peace deal for Ukraine on his terms and will not be stopped by economic costs.

  • Relatives of missing Iraq soldiers storm parliament
    Relatives of missing Iraq soldiers storm parliament

    Angry relatives of missing Iraqi soldiers stormed the parliament building in Baghdad on Tuesday, attacked MPs and staged a sit-in for several hours in its main chamber, an official said. An emergency session of parliament, with relatives in attendance, will be held on Wednesday, Juburi's office said in a statement. Around 1,700 soldiers surrendered to the jihadist Islamic State (IS) group in June as its fighters seized second city Mosul and swept south towards Baghdad.

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