You may have seen that the 2012 edition of FP's "Stories You Missed" is now online. Go look at it!
In addition to being issues that were undercovered in the past year, the list is also intended to highlight some big stories that may become bigger issues in the year to come. For instance, back in 2009, the list was highlighted by the first commerical ships to travel the northeast passage through the Arctic from East Asia to Western Europe. Today, I see, the BBC is reporting that a natural gas tanker is making the trip, and in mid-winter no less:
The carrier, Ob River, left Norway in November and has sailed north of Russia on its way to Japan.
The specially equipped tanker is due to arrive in early December and will shave 20 days off the regular journey.
The owners say that changing climate conditions and a volatile gas market make the Arctic transit profitable.
This year's Stories You Missed list also revisits this Arctic to look at how the energy boom is impacting the region's indigenous population.
NINA LARSON/AFP/Getty Images