The following enterprise stories moved recently in the Associated Press report and have been resent for use during the final weeks of the year. For questions, please call the AP Nerve Center at 800-845-8450 (ext. 1600).
GREAT LAKES-NUCLEAR WASTE
KINCARDINE, Ontario — Ordinarily, a proposal to bury radioactive waste in a rural area where farming and tourism are economic pillars could be expected to inspire "not in my backyard" protests from people close by — and relief from places that could have been targeted. But conventional wisdom has been turned on its head in the Canadian province of Ontario, where a publicly owned power company wants to entomb waste from its nuclear plants 2,230 feet below the earth's surface and less than a mile from Lake Huron. Critics in the U.S. are aghast at the thought of burying nuclear material anywhere near the second-largest of the Great Lakes. By John Flesher. AP photos.
PRAGUE, Okla. — It's become a predictable routine at Matt Pryor's insurance agency: An earthquake rumbles through Oklahoma, rattling dishes and nerves. Then the phones light up with calls and text messages from desperate residents asking if it's too late to buy a policy to cover any damage. Business at Pryor's Oklahoma City office has been brisk following a pair of temblors that struck late this year near the city of Edmond, a bedroom community where residents are more accustomed to watching the sky for tornadoes than bracing for the earth to move. After decades of little seismic activity in this region, earthquakes have become more common in the last several years. And a new study by the U.S. Geological Survey suggests they are here to stay. By Justin Juozapavicius. AP photos.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Aaron Gabrielson and Andrew Regenhard are seated shoulder to shoulder in front of five video monitors, maneuvering an unmanned aircraft by keyboard and mouse as it descends toward a virtual runway in a suburban area flanked by water on one side and mountains on the other. The two University of North Dakota aviation students and self-proclaimed video junkies could just as well be sitting on a couch somewhere playing Xbox. Instead, they're operating controls that fly the plane and adjust sensors like a zoom lens on a camera. UND's unmanned aircraft degree program, the nation's first, has exploded as the drone industry has grown. By Dave Kolpack. AP photos.
WEST HAVEN, CONN. — The microscope at the University of New Haven, set at 10-times magnification, shows a marijuana leaf covered with dozens of tiny bumps. It's mold, and someone, somewhere, could be smoking similarly contaminated pot and not have a clue. Heather Miller Coyle, a forensic botanist and associate professor at the university, says all sorts of nasty things not visible to the naked eye have been found in marijuana — mold, mildew, insect parts, salmonella and E. coli, to name a few. That's why Coyle and her students this year began developing a new process to detect contaminants in marijuana through DNA profiling and analysis. The aim is to be able to identify potentially harmful substances through a testing method that could make the analysis easier and quicker for labs across the country in the developing industry of marijuana quality control testing. By Dave Collins. AP photos.
BEFORE I DIE
BUFFALO, N.Y. — It is public art made of private wishes. In a phenomenon spreading across the globe, oversize blackboards, painted on buildings and freestanding displays, invite passers-by to complete the sentence: "Before I die I want to..." Answers, some profound, some profane, are written on stenciled lines with pieces of sidewalk chalk picked from the ground below. "...make my dad proud." ''...find the yin to my yang." Since artist Candy Chang created the first wall on an abandoned house in her New Orleans neighborhood in 2011, more than 400 walls have gone up in the United States and more than 60 other countries. By Carolyn Thompson. AP photos, video.
AMISH SHOOTER'S FAMILY
STRASBURG, Pa. — Once a week, Terri Roberts spends time with a 13-year-old Amish girl named Rosanna who sits in a wheelchair and eats through a tube. Roberts bathes her, sings to her, reads her stories. She can only guess what's going on inside Rosanna's mind because the girl can't talk. Roberts' son did this to her at an Amish schoolhouse seven years ago, tying up 10 girls and opening fire, killing five and injuring five others, and then committing suicide as police closed in. One of Roberts' other sons is making a documentary — called "Hope" — about her journey from heartbroken mother to inspirational speaker. She has delivered her message to scores of audiences and has even considered traveling to speak in Newtown, Conn., where a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School last year. By Michael Rubinkam. AP photos, video.
NEW YORK — Mike Bloomberg will never have a true successor. While others will follow him in office, the billionaire businessman's style and money will make him a singular figure in the history of the nation's largest city. He entered City Hall as one of the unlikeliest mayors in New York's history and leaves 12 years later having reshaped the city. But his critics say he never learned a human touch, and he appeared insensitive to those who felt marginalized by income inequality or police misconduct or those upset by his decision to overturn term limits to run again. By Jonathan Lemire. AP photos.
OAKLAND, Calif. — The growing visibility of youth and young adults who self-identify as "genderqueer" — neither male nor female but an androgynous hybrid of both — is challenging the limits of human comprehension and the English language. On college campuses, urban offices and social media, a small but semantically committed cadre of young people is asking to be referred to not by "he" or "she" but "they," ''ze" ''v" and other novel pronouns. By Lisa Leff. AP photos.
TOURISTS NEXT DOOR
KAILUA, Hawaii — People from across the world are drawn to the coastal town of Kailua. Its white sand beaches are among the nation's best. Some recommend the Honolulu suburb for its laid-back vibe. And President Barack Obama vacations there with his family each Christmas. But now, the neighborhood board is calling on the state tourism agency to stop encouraging visitors to stay overnight in their town. It's the latest salvo in a long-running battle over how much tourism Kailua wants and should allow — a dispute that's popping up around the state as more visitors want to experience island life like a local. By Audrey McAvoy. AP photos, video.
SAN JOSE, Calif. — Encrypted email, secure instant messaging and other privacy services are booming in the wake of the NSA's recently revealed surveillance programs. But the flood of new computer security services is of variable quality, and much of it, experts say, can bog down computers and isn't likely to keep out spies. In the end, the new geek wars —between tech industry programmers on the one side and government spooks, fraudsters and hacktivists on the other— may leave people's PCs and businesses' computer systems encrypted to the teeth but no better protected from hordes of savvy code crackers. By Martha Mendoza. AP photos.
OLD WORLD-LEGISLATING LOVE
FUSHENG, China — As the daughter-in-law rolls open the rusted metal doors to her garage, light spills onto a small figure huddled on a straw mattress. A curious face peers out. It's the face of Kuang Shiying's 93-year-old mother-in-law — better known as the little old lady who sued her own children for not taking care of her. The drama playing out inside this ramshackle house reflects a wider and increasingly urgent problem. The world's population is aging fast, and there will soon be more old people than young for the first time in history. This demographic about-turn has left families and governments struggling to decide: Who is responsible for the care of the elderly? A handful of countries and 29 U.S. states now require adult children to financially support their parents, although such laws are rarely enforced where the government provides aid. In China, where aid is scarce and family loyalty is a cornerstone of society, more than 1,000 parents have already sued their children for financial support. But in December, the government went further, and required that children also support their parents emotionally with regular visits. The law pits the expectations of society against the complexities of family, and begs the question: How do you legislate love? By Kristen Gelineau. AP photos.
OLD WORLD-THE SILENT YEARS
SYDNEY, Australia — By the time the ambulance showed up to the house, the old woman's screams were, as the paramedics would later tell it, already at a 10 out of 10. On a bed in the foyer lay 88-year-old Cynthia Thoresen, her eyes screwed up in agony, her fists clenched, with a broken leg that had sat untended for weeks. Feces caked her body, from her arms down to her feet, filling the crevices between her toes and under her fingernails. Even in high-income countries like Australia, the rate of elder abuse is 4 to 6 percent, according to the World Health Organization. And even here, the system failed to protect Cynthia, over and over again, in life and in death. By Kristen Gelineau. AP photos.
REIMS, France — For Champagne to become the tipple it is today , some men had to die. Young men, married to clever young women. Without the widows of Champagne, mankind's most seductive fizz might well not be what it is today. One of the world's most famous Champagnes — Veuve ("Widow") Clicquot — explicitly evokes the rather grim tradition. From its bottle shape to its taste, color, labeling and even marketing, Champagne owes its uniqueness to a series of widows from the early 19th century who used the sometimes mysterious deaths of their husbands to enter the male-dominated business world. The widows became so successful that dozens of Champagnes added "Veuve" to their names even though no widow ran the house — just for its mystique and marketing value. By Thomas Adamson. AP photos, video.
LONDON — Volkswagen turns off some employees' email 30 minutes after their shifts end. Goldman Sachs is urging junior staff to take weekends off. BMW is planning new rules that will keep workers from being contacted after hours. This surge in corporate beneficence isn't an indication that employers are becoming kinder and gentler: It's about the bottom line. By Danica Kirka. AP photos.
UNIVERSITY POLICE PATROLS
WASHINGTON — The police officers who patrol America's colleges are empowered these days to do far more than respond to campus emergencies. Campus police around the country are increasingly expanding their jurisdiction beyond school and into the surrounding neighborhoods, blurring a physical town-gown divide that colleges say is arbitrary when it comes to crime. By Eric Tucker. AP photos.
A SON FORGIVES
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Nearly three decades after the murder that tore them apart, the mother and son talk easily now. They laugh over little things. She stands on tiptoes to hug him and whispers: "I love you." He smiles and hugs her back. They often meet for lunch at the nonprofit where Gaile Owens works. On this day, she and Stephen sit side by side in a conference room, one glancing at the other as they answer a reporter's questions about their tangled past. About the killing of Stephen's father and Gaile's years on death row for her role in the crime. About Stephen's burden of resentment and anger and, finally, his decision to move past it all. That choice, he says, "opened a life for me that I would have never had." By Travis Loller. AP photos.
SUPER BOWL 2014-GETTING STARTED
Feb. 2, 2014, is a day that will be remembered forever in not only the NFL, but in New York and New Jersey, as the Super Bowl will be played outdoors in a northern market for the first time ever. Indeed, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has overcome quite a few challenges in his tenure, but this one may be the toughest. Travel, traffic, lodging, logistics - not to mention the weather - will all be in play, as the NFL tries to showcase its biggest game on the world's biggest stage. By Jim Litke. AP photos.
NATION OF DISTRUSTERS
WASHINGTON — You can take our word for it: Americans don't trust each other anymore. We're not talking about the loss of faith in big institutions like government, the church or Wall Street, which fluctuates with events. For four decades, a gut-level ingredient of democracy — trust in the other fellow — has been quietly draining away. These days, only a third of Americans say most people can be trusted. Half felt that way in 1972, when the General Social Survey first asked the question. Forty years later, a record high of nearly two-thirds say "you can't be too careful" in dealing with people. An AP-GfK poll conducted in October found that Americans are suspicious of each other in everyday encounters. Less than a third expressed a lot of trust in clerks who swipe their credit cards, drivers on the road, or people they meet when traveling. By Connie Cass. AP photos, graphic.
— DISTRUSTERS POLL-FINDINGS — Do you keep a close watch when you hand over your credit card? Assume the other fellow on the road is texting or drunk? Worry that a careless post will be spread by your Facebook friends? If so, you're not alone. By Connie Cass and Dennis Junius.