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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (Reuters) - A massive California wildfire that has already destroyed nearly 800 structures scorched another 56,000 acres on Sunday, making it the fifth largest such blaze in recorded state history, as it ran toward picturesque coastal cities.But fire officials said as darkness fell that with the hot, dry Santa Ana winds not as fierce as expected, crews had been successful in building some fire lines between the flames and the towns of Montecito and Carpinteria. . . more
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Monsanto Co will give cash back to U.S. farmers who buy a weed killer that has been linked to widespread crop damage, offering an incentive to apply its product even as regulators in several U.S. states weigh restrictions on its use. . . more
BEIJING (Reuters) - Eight northern Chinese cities failed to meet air quality targets in October and November, even as local authorities launched rigorous steps to cut emissions during the winter, the government said on Monday. . . more
TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's weather bureau said on Monday that a La Nina weather pattern has emerged, with a 60 percent chance of it lasting though to the end of spring in May. . . more
NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's government is in favor of banning imports of petroleum coke on environmental grounds, according to a government affidavit filed with the country's top court, which could be a big blow to U.S. refiners who export heavily to the country. . . more
LONDON (Reuters) - Some trains were canceled, flights were grounded and a rugby match was called off on Sunday after Britain experienced heavy snow fall in some areas. . . more
PARIS (Reuters) - France will push for an European financial transactions tax to fund the fight against climate change, four French government ministers said in a joint statement. . . more
CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt will sign contracts with Moscow during Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to Cairo on Monday for the country's first nuclear power plant, three senior sources told Reuters on Sunday. . . more
SHANGHAI (Reuters) - With its smog-prone north desperate to slash coal consumption, China is looking to deploy nuclear power to provide reliable winter heating, raising public safety concerns - though developers say the risks are minimal. . . more
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's far western Xinjiang region has suspended mining in one of its big nature reserves, the official Xinhua news agency reported, amid rising environmental concerns. . . more


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