News bites: Oil prices rise on 'fiscal cliff' hopes

Oil prices rose Wednesday as President Obama returned to Washington, D.C., earlier than expected to work on a “fiscal cliff” deal, The Associated Press reports.

People are putting a new focus on pipeline safety as projects to transport oil from tar sands — such as the Keystone XL pipeline — prepare to come online, according to Inside Climate News.

A study by the Dresden Technical University in Germany said car pollution, noise and accidents cost every European Union citizen about $967 per year, according to The Guardian.

Maine is getting closer to a wind-power generation goal, but still has a way to go, notes The Associated Press.