Oil prices rose to near a barrel on Monday on signs of colder weather in the United States and Europe and the continued weakness of the dollar. The Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday marked the unofficial start of winter in the US. Among other areas, south-eastern New Mexico got up to 23cm of snow.
Oil prices kept rising on Thursday after reaching record highs in the previous session on United States refinery outages and declines in US oil inventories. A decline earlier in the day was reversed in part by worries over a potential tropical-storm threat to oil and gas installations in the Gulf of Mexico, analysts said.
In a global effort to save amphibians from a deadly disease, zookeepers around the world want to turn 2008 into the ''Year of the Frog''. As many as 2 000 of the world's 6 000 known amphibian species are in danger of extinction due to the spread of a parasite fungus called chytrid, which causes frogs to suffocate.