Tag Archives: charts and graphs

How divided is the U.S.?

The Pew report Diversity and Division in Advanced Economies by Laura Silver, Janell Fetterolf, and Aidan Connaughton (10/13/2021) has the U.S. is the top spot in a poll and not in a good way.  The chart copied here from Pew has the U.S. at the top for conflict between political parties and even the second highest response from the U.S. would be third in the most common response.

Notably, however, in most societies racial and ethnic divisions are not seen as the most salient cleavage. Rather, in the majority of places surveyed, more people identify conflicts between people who support different political parties than conflicts between people with different ethnic or racial backgrounds. Political divisions are also seen as greater than the other two dimensions tested: between those with different religions and between urban and rural residents. (For more on the actual composition of each public surveyed on each of these dimensions, see Appendix A.)

The report has over 20 charts and rich context to discuss the quantitative results.

How did COVID impact K-12 learning based in income?

The Pew article What we know about online learning and homework gap amid the pandemic by Katherine Schaeffer (10/1/2021) has this to say:

Parents with lower incomes whose children’s schools closed amid COVID-19 were more likely to say their children faced technology-related obstacles while learning from home. Nearly half of these parents (46%) said their child faced at least one of the three obstacles to learning asked about in the survey, compared with 31% of parents with midrange incomes and 18% of parents with higher incomes.

This technology divide isn’t new:

Even before the pandemic, Black teens and those living in lower-income households were more likely than other groups to report trouble completing homework assignments because they did not have reliable technology access. Nearly one-in-five teens ages 13 to 17 (17%) said they are often or sometimes unable to complete homework assignments because they do not have reliable access to a computer or internet connection, a 2018 Center survey of U.S. teens found.

There are four other charts in the article.

How much CO2 have we emitted in the last 30 years?

The Institute for European Environmental Policy had this post that I missed in 2020 but it is still good: More than half of all CO2 emissions since 1751 emitted in the last 30 years (4/29/2020).

Slightly over half of all cumulative global CO2 emissions have taken place since 1990, the year of the first IPCC Assessment Report. The report re-confirmed anthropogenic climate change in a way that could not be ignored and led to the creation of the UNFCCC.

As a project you can do something similar comparing China and the U.S. using the U.S. and China CO2 Emissions projects under Calculus Projects.

Southwest drought, bad luck or more to come?

From the climate.gov article NOAA-led drought task force concludes current Southwest drought is a preview of coming attractions by Rebecca Lindsey (9/23/2021):

The team found that the record-low precipitation that kicked off the event could have been a fluke—just the rare bad luck of natural variability. But the drought would not have reached its current punishing intensity without the extremely high temperatures brought by human-caused global warming.

The key points:

The cumulative precipitation for the 20-month period was the lowest on record, dating back to 1895. That left almost the entire western half of the contiguous United States in some level of drought at the end of August.

and

Meanwhile, the average temperatures over the same 20-month period were near-record high. High temperatures make the atmosphere thirsty for moisture, which it draws vigorously out of the region’s soil, rivers, lakes—even the snowpack. This atmospheric demand, called a vapor pressure deficit (“VPD” for short), reached record highs during the current drought.

No relief in site:

As for when the current event will break, the task force warns that it’s unlikely to be this winter. Thanks in part to the expectation that La Niña will settle into the tropical Pacific by later this fall, odds are that winter precipitation across the Southwest will be below average once again. That means the drought will likely persist well into 2022, and perhaps longer, depending on how unfavorable the coming wet season is.

There is a link to the full report for those interested.

How hot was August 2021?

From NOAA’s Global Climate Report – August 2021:

The August 2021 global surface temperature was 0.90°C (1.62°F) above the 20th century average of 15.6°C (60.1°F). This was the sixth warmest August on record. Nine of the 10 warmest Augusts have occurred since 2009. August of 1998 still ranks among the 10 warmest on record. August 2021 was also the 45th consecutive August and the 440th consecutive month with temperatures, at least nominally, above the 20th century average.

And for land only:

Averaged as a whole, the global land-only surface had a near-record high August temperature at 1.34°C (2.41°F) above average, which is only 0.04°C (0.07°F) less than the record-warm August set in 2016. This was mainly driven by the very warm land-only surface temperatures across the Northern Hemisphere, which had its warmest August on record at +1.44°C (+2.59°F). This value surpassed the previous record set in 2016 by 0.04°C (0.07°F).

More info and data available on the page.

How much will tidal flooding increase?

The graph below shows the number of days per year that sea level in Kings Point, NY is projected to exceed 60 cm above MHHW.

Sea level rise will increase the likelihood of tidal flooding. NASA has posted a tool, Flooding Days Projection Tool, to help understand how much tidal flooding may increase. There is a drop down menu for numerous locations in the U.S.  For example, the graph here is for Kings Point, NY.  Along with the value of the data there are calculus terms in the post:

These projections are based on unique, location-specific relationships between annual mean sea level, the top 1% of astronomical tides in each year, and annual counts of threshold exceedances.

An interesting and essential feature of these graphs is that the number of flooding days per year does not necessarily increase smoothly in time. In most cases, there are inflection points where the frequency of flooding days increases rapidly, which may be useful when establishing planning horizons. In many locations around the United States and its territories, there are sharp inflection points around the mid-2030s that are related to the interaction between accelerating sea level rise due to climate change and a long-term, 18.6-year cycle in the amplitude of astronomical tides.

And discussions of probabilistic modeling:

The purpose of this tool is to produce probablistic projections of flood frequency in the future that provide information about the full range of possibilities for a given year, including the potential for the occasional—yet inevitable—severe years. The projections leverage the predictability inherent in certain contributions (e.g., tidal amplitude and climate-change-induced sea level rise) and use statistical methods to account for everything else. The projections are probabilistic, because rather than producing a single, most-likely number of flooding days for a future year, these projections produce a range of plausible numbers with probabilities assigned to each possibility or range of possibilities.

All in all this is a great resources for math classrooms.

 

How do views on major institutions differ by political affiliation?

The Pew article Republicans increasingly critical of several major U.S. institutions, including big corporations and banks by Ted Van Green (8/20/2021) includes the chart copied here.  The charts show clearly that republicans are more critical than in 2019, but it would seem that gaps are more concerning.  Republicans are more critical of banks and corporations than two years ago but that puts them right around democrats.  In other instances viewpoints are diverging. The 76 to 34 positive viewpoint difference on college and universities seems concerning and from the article:

The survey finds that partisan differences extend to views of K-12 public schools: 77% of Democrats say they have a positive effect, compared with 42% of Republicans. A 57% majority of Republicans, including nearly two-thirds of conservative Republicans (65%), say public elementary and secondary schools have a negative effect.

Discussion of the data as well as the reporting of the data and ramifications of the results would seem to fit into many a course. Pew has a methodology section and the data.

 

How much LNG do we export?

The eia article U.S. natural gas net trade is growing as annual LNG exports exceed pipeline exports by Kristen Tsai (8/16/2021) has the chart here that answers the question.

In our August 2021 Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), we forecast that U.S. natural gas exports will exceed natural gas imports by an average of 11.0 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2021, or almost 50% more than the 2020 average of 7.5 Bcf/d. Increases in liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports and in pipeline exports to Mexico are driving this growth in U.S. natural gas exports. For the first time since U.S. LNG exports from the Lower 48 states began in 2016, annual LNG exports are expected to outpace pipeline exports—by an estimated 0.6 Bcf/d—this year.

We roughly export 10-15 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas. Is this a good idea from a sustainability perspective or national security perspective?

eia has links to their data.

 

How hot was July 2021?

From NOAA’s Global Climate Report – July 2021:

As a whole, the July 2021 global surface temperature was the highest for July since global records began in 1880 at 0.93°C (1.67°F) above the 20th-century average of 15.8°C (60.4°F). This value surpassed the previous record set in 2016 (and subsequently matched in 2019 and 2020) by only 0.01°C (0.02°F). Because July is the warmest month of the year from a climatological perspective, July 2021 was more likely than not the warmest month on record for the globe since 1880. Nine of the 10 warmest Julys have occurred since 2010, with the last seven Julys (2015-2021) being the seven warmest Julys on record.

The data is available at the top of the page under Additional Resources.

How did CEOs do during the pandemic?

Did CEOs take a pay hit like many workers did during the pandemic? The article CEO pay has skyrocketed 1,322% since 1978 by Lawrence Mishel and Jori Kandra (8/10/2021) suggests CEOs did just fine last year. Their chart shows that realized CEO compensation grew during 2020 compared to the average worker.

Details on the metric:

We focus on the average compensation of CEOs at the 350 largest publicly owned U.S. firms (i.e., firms that sell stock on the open market) by revenue. Our source of data is the S&P ExecuComp database for the years 1992 to 2020 and survey data published by the Wall Street Journal for selected years back to 1965. We maintain the sample size of 350 firms each year when using the ExecuComp data.

The realized measure of compensation includes the value of stock options as realized (i.e., exercised), capturing the change from when the options were granted to when the CEO invokes the options, usually after the stock price has risen and the options values have increased. The realized compensation measure also values stock awards at their value when vested (usually three years after being granted), capturing any change in the stock price as well as additional stock awards provided as part of a performance award.

The granted measure of compensation values stock options and restricted stock awards by their “fair value” when granted (Compustat estimates of the fair value of options and stock awards as granted determined using the Black Scholes model).

Well maybe CEO pay just went down less than worker pay and that is why the ratio went up. In table 1, realized pay for 2019 is $20,351,000 with 2020 projected as $24,194,00. There are other graphs in the article and data available for download.