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Arctic

Avoid plastic trees, and take steps to keep your real trees fresh and useful, an expert advises. Radio Sweden
Russia's currency and economic woes, which go beyond anything that country's central bank can fix, are already being felt in FinlandYLE News
The volume of cargo shipped through the Arctic route fell by 77 percent this year, and some experts say potential for ship traffic has been overstated.Trude Pettersen, Barents Observer
While the Arctic in 2014 continued its long-term warming, much of the rest of the world was struck by wacky and extreme weather, and studies are underway to determine whether the trends are related, said scientists who released an annual report on the Arctic on Wednesday. Yereth Rosen
The free-fall of the ruble -- and the Russian recession that is expected next year -- will create hardships for neighboring areas of Norway that depend on Russian customers. Thomas Nilsen, Barents Observer
The storm-driven inflow of oxygen-rich, salty water will improve circulation and might boost fish stocks, an environmental expert says. YLE News
The Russian government, interested in expanding territory for oil and gas production, also has designs on the North Pole but says it can work out its differences with Denmark.Trude Pettersen, Barents Observer
Officials in three Nordic countries have taken steps to respond to aggressive aerial moves by the Russian military...Radio Sweden and YLE News
A new app makes it easy to send texts in the indigenous languages used in northern Scandinavia. Trude Pettersen, Barents Observer
Visitation to the northern Norway is up by about 10 percent this year, as more people want to see the northern lights in winter and midnight sun in summer. Trude Pettersen, Barents Observer

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