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This week's top stories from

With the holiday season upon us, it’s easy to let our daily routines slip a little. If haven’t had a chance to check out and over the past few days, here are five top stories you should be sure not to miss:

  1. Scientists identify most environmentally friendly cereal cropping process: A research team from Denmark found that how grain crops are grown and harvested can have an effect on the environment, and identified the methods and crops that cause less damage.
  1. Soil science helps boost agricultural success: Two scientists have developed a set of equations that will help farmers, land managers and others determine what a patch of soil can best be used for.
  1. Saltmarsh sparrow may be extinct within 50 years: The at-risk species could be the first bird species to go extinct in the continental United States since 1931.
  1. Scientists see phytoplankton as a new sustainable food and fuel source: Lipids from the microscopic marine plant can be removed and used for fuel. The leftovers from this process are a highly nutritious biomass, scientists said.
  1. Australasian marsupials survived ancient climate change: As the climate became drier and rainforests dried out five to 10 million years ago, Australian marsupials survived the shift by adapting to the new grasslands, scientists said.

By Olivia Harvey, Staff Writer

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