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In the papers today - 12 December

The Arctic could lose virtually all its summer sea ice by the year 2040 - 40 years earlier than previously thought -according to a study by leading climate scientists.
A rapid acceleration in the loss of sea ice seen in recent years will be dwarfed by the massive melting, up to four times faster than previously, which could take place within 20 years, the scientists predict - The IndependentA frenetic £5bn bidding war has broken out for the steel group Corus after Brazil's CSN trumped an improved offer from India's Tata within hours. The Corus board is now backing a 515p-a-share offer, worth £4.9bn, from CSN. However, Tata, which has already made two offers for Corus, said it is considering coming back with more. Corus also comes with £900m of debt - The IndependentShell oil company has come under criticism from Russian state agencies that it has breached environmental rules. Shell says it has complied to the letter with all requests to improve conditions - The Daily TelegraphThe government is putting £17m into a programme designed to keep British industry at the leading edge of aircraft wing design and construction. It is backing the integrated wing programme, which involves a number of UK companies and agencies led by Airbus UK. The £34m project will focus on designs that make aircraft more fuel-efficient and cut greenhouse gas emissions. Government support for the scheme was announced yesterday by the trade and industry secretary Alistair Darling at the Airbus UK factory at Broughton in north Wales - The GuardianAirline passengers face long delays at airports from February 2007 because check-in staff will be required to collect the increase in departure tax announced last week. More than 7M people had already booked flights before the announcement in the Pre-Budget Report that air passenger duty will double from 1 February. Those passengers will have to pay the extra tax when they check in for their flights. Those on short-haul flights will pay £5 extra and those on long-haul £20 extra. The increases for business class passengers are £10 for short-haul and £40 for long-haul - The Times

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