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NASA: Recently Spotted Asteroid No Risk for Earth

NASA says a newly spotted 1,300-foot (400-meter) wide asteroid is not a threat to hit Earth, despite recent media reports.

NASA's Near Earth Object program manager Donald Yeomans said the asteroid, discovered in October by Russian scientists, won't even get that close to Earth in the next 150 years. And it isn't a threat to any other planet, either.

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PM: Canada Will only Curb Oil Sector Emissions when U.S. Does

Canada will only impose regulations to cut carbon emissions from its oil and gas sector -- its top source of emissions -- if and when the United States moves to do the same, the prime minister said Tuesday.

"We want to see oil and gas regulations on a continental basis given the integrated nature of this industry," Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in the House of Commons.

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Climate March to Set Tone at Lima Talks

Green groups hoped for a big turnout at a protest in Lima Wednesday aimed at heaping pressure on ministers haggling over a post-2020 deal to curb carbon emissions.

The "People's Climate March" in the Peruvian capital follows mobilization on the eve of the September 23 summit in New York that revived climate change as a political priority.

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Mars Mountain May have Arisen from Lake Sediments

A mountain on Mars may have built up over time from lake sediments, according to NASA scientists who have been studying observations from the Curiosity rover scouring the Red Planet.

The latest analysis is based on rocks discovered at the lower edges of Mount Sharp, which is located, rather oddly, in the midst of a crater on Earth's neighboring planet.

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Abandoned Oil and Gas Wells Emit 'Significant' Methane

A significant amount of the potent greenhouse gas methane may be leaking into the atmosphere from abandoned oil and gas wells, according to a study in Pennsylvania out Monday.

The study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences is based on direct measurements of methane outflow from and near 19 abandoned oil and gas wells in the northeastern U.S. state.

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Scientists Re-create What May be Life's First Spark

Scientists in a lab used a powerful laser to re-create what might have been the original spark of life on Earth.

The researchers zapped clay and a chemical soup with the laser to simulate the energy of a speeding asteroid smashing into the planet. They ended up creating what can be considered crucial pieces of the building blocks of life.

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Elephant Slaughter, China Ivory Sales 'Out of Control'

The slaughter of Africa's elephants and the illegal trade in ivory in China are "out of control" and could push wild elephants extinction within a generation, conservationists said Tuesday.

Soaring quantities of ivory are being sold in rapidly growing numbers of shops in China, with over 100,000 elephants killed from 2010 to 2012, the joint report read from the campaign groups Save the Elephants and The Aspinall Foundation.

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NASA Craft to Probe Pluto after Nine-Year Journey

An American probe that will explore Pluto woke up from its slumber Saturday, after a nine-year journey to take a close look at the distant body for the first time.

"New Horizons is healthy and cruising quietly through deep space, nearly three billion miles from home, but its rest is nearly over," said Alice Bowman, the craft's operations manager at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory outside Washington.

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Six Sperm Whales Die in Rare Mass Beaching in Australia

A pod of six sperm whales washed up dead Monday in a rare mass stranding on the South Australia coast, with animal welfare officials struggling over the logistics of handling the huge carcasses.

The whales, which can weigh up to 50 tonnes, were found at low tide by residents on Parara beach, about 150 kilometers (93 miles) northwest of Adelaide.

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Media: China Develops New Rocket for Manned Moon Mission

China is developing a huge rocket that will be used for its first manned mission to the moon, state media said Monday, underscoring Beijing's increasingly ambitious space program.

The first launch of the Long March-9 will take place around 2028, said the China Daily, which also cited experts saying the rocket's development is at the research stage.

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