Tag Archives: charts and graphs

Do oil and gas companies go bankrupt?

Well, of course they do. While we may be happy with low gas prices at the pump, may this cause problems in the future? I’m not sure but someone has to cover the debt that we see in the graphic here from Tracking the Growing Wave of Oil & Gas Bankruptcies in 2020 by Omri Wallach (7/24/2020).

For oil and gas producers, the second quarter of 2020 saw 18 bankruptcies, the highest quarterly total since 2016.

So far, they’re largely centered in the U.S., which saw a boom of surface-level shale oil production in the 2010’s to take advantage of rising crude prices. As prices have dropped, many heavily leveraged companies have started to run out of options.

If this peaks your interest then a related article, Today’s Energy Predicament – A Look at Some Charts by Gail Tverberg  (9/1/2020) at Our Finite World is a good follow up.


Who are the extreme poor?

The World Bank Data Blog post Where the extreme poor live by Marta Schoch, Christoph Lanker and Melina Fleury (10/12/2020) provides the graph copied here.

Although the number of poor people has fallen in many regions, most notably East Asia and Pacific, and more recently South Asia, there has been no reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa, where the regional poverty rate remains above 40% in 2017.

The Middle East and North Africa has also seen an increase in the number of poor in recent years, driven largely by the economies in the region that are affected by conflict.

The post has links to reports with data.

How important is manufacturing to the U.S. economy?

At the end of August I posted about the number of manufacturing jobs in the U.S in the post How many people are employed in manufacturing? The Census Bureau has a recent post, Manufacturing Still Amon Top Five U.S. Employer by Adam Grundy (10/2/2020) that adds some context. Manufacturing is the fifth-largest employer with health care and social assistance at the top.  As the graphic here shows, manufacturing has a better than average salary. Also,

According to the Census Bureau’s Preliminary Profile of US Exporting Companies in 2017-2018, nearly six in 10 U.S. exporting dollars come from manufacturers.

There are other graphics and links to data in the article.

How does U.S. covid testing compare to other countries?

Our World in Data has an interactive graph that plots covid confirmed cases by tests both per million people and including an element of time. Copied here is one example with the U.S. and other selected countries. The paths for each country is from Jan 21 to Oct 5. So, for example, while the U.S. has increased testing (going up along the y-axis)  it has also had an increase in the confirmed cases (moving to the right along the x-axis). In the end the test positive rate has been fairly stable around 6-7%. Explore this graph by comparing other countries. As always, Our World in Data makes the data available.

Are hurricanes getting stronger?

Climate Central provides some graphs and facts related to hurricanes in their article Stronger Hurricanes (9/23/2020).  The graph shows the trend in Atlantic water temperature and here are the related key concepts from the article:

Sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic, known as the Main Development Region for tropical systems (depressions, storms, and hurricanes), have risen 1.85°F in the last century.

The likelihood of tropical cyclones (the term scientists broadly use to represent hurricanes, typhoons, etc) reaching Category 3 status has increased since 1979.

Warming water and air from climate change creates the potential for stronger hurricanes, with heavier rain and higher storm surge, increasing the risk of flooding when they make landfall.

There are two other graphs, further information, and citations of data sources along with methodolgy.

What was the 2020 Arctic sea ice minimum?

The climate.gov article 2020 Arctic sea ice minimum second lowest on record by Michon Scott (9/21/2020) reports:

On September 15, 2020, the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) announced, Arctic sea ice appeared to have reached its annual minimum extent. At 1.44 million square miles (3.74 million square kilometers), this minimum was second only to the record-low extent observed on September 17, 2012. The 2020 figure—preliminary because a late-season surge of summer warmth could still drop the extent further—continued an observed trend of long-term Arctic sea ice decline.

The graph here is from the National Snow and Ice Data Center’s Chartic Interactive Sea Ice Graph (a really great visual). I selected 2010-2020. The year 2012, still the current record, was an impressive minimum and this year is the first in the last 8 to come close.

From the article:

Among long-time observers of Arctic sea ice, the 2020 value was significant in that it not only punctuated a long-term decline, but also because it fell below the 4-million-kilometer (1.5-million-mile) threshold for only the second time in the satellite record—after  2012, when the minimum extent dipped to 1.31 million square miles (3.39 million square kilometers). Ted Scambos, senior research scientist at the Earth Science Observation Center at the University of Colorado-Boulder, says, “This threshold means the Arctic is more ocean than ice, a blue highway that’s been open since mid-July and won’t close until well into October, and a huge fetch for wave action along an 8,000-mile open coast of Siberia and Alaska.” The combination of sea ice decline and permafrost thaw can lead to coastal erosion as more abundant waves wear away newly softened coastlines.

What is the fossil fuel percent of our energy consumption?

The eia post Fossil fuels account for the largest share of U.S. energy production and consumption by Bill Sanchez (9/14/2020) summarizes our energy production and consumption since 1950. From the graph copied here we see that even though we have increased renewable energy capacity they still make up a small percent of our total energy consumption. Some good news:

The share of U.S. total energy consumption that originated from fossil fuels has fallen from its peak of 94% in 1966 to 80% in 2019. The total amount of fossil fuels consumed in the United States has also fallen from its peak of 86 quads in 2007.

There are three other graphs and links to data.

How hot was July 2020?

From NOAA’s Global Climate Report – July 2020:

The July 2020 global land and ocean surface temperature of 0.92°C (1.66°F) above the 20th century average tied with 2016 as the second highest July global temperature since records began in 1880. This value was only 0.01°C (0.02°F) shy of tying the record warm July of 2019.

The Northern Hemisphere land and ocean surface temperature was the highest in the 141-year record at 1.18°C (2.12°F) above average.

Regionally, the Caribbean region had its warmest July on record, with a temperature departure of 1.24°C (2.23°F) above average. This was 0.09°C (0.16°F) above the previous record set in 2016.

The summary includes links to the data.

How much utility-scale battery storage do we have?

The eia reports on battery storage capacity in their post Utility-scale battery storage capacity continues its upward tend in 2018 by Alex Mey, Vikram Linga, & Patricia Hutchins  (8/10/2020). Their main chart is copied here.

By the end of 2018, the United States had 125 operational battery storage systems, providing a total of 869 MW of installed power capacity and 1,236 MWh of energy capacity.

These systems have a wide variety of applications, including integrating renewables into the grid, peak shavingfrequency regulation, and providing backup power.

There are two other graphs in the post including which regions have the most storage capacity (can you guess before you look?). There are also links to data.

What are the best news sources?

The PEW article Americans Who Mainly Get Their News on Social Media Are Less Engaged, Less Knowledgeable by Amy Mitchell, Mark Jurkowitz, J. Baxter Oliphant and Elisa Shearer (7/30/2020) answers the question with the graph copied here.

As of late last year, 18% of U.S. adults say they turn most to social media for political and election news. That’s lower than the share who use news websites and apps (25%), but about on par with the percent who say their primary pathway is cable television (16%) or local television (16%), and higher than the shares who turn to three other pathways mentioned in the survey (network TV, radio and print).

One specific set of nine questions focused on foundational political knowledge, such as the federal budget deficit and which party supports certain policy positions. Researchers created an index of high, middle or low political knowledge based on how many of these nine questions respondents got right (high knowledge answered eight to nine questions correctly, middle got six or seven right and low got five or fewer right; see here for more details of the political knowledge index). While at least four-in-ten individuals who turn mainly to news websites and apps (45%), radio (42%) and print (41%) for news fall into the high political knowledge category, the same is true of just 17% of those who turn most to social media. Only those in the local TV group scored lower, with 10% in the high political knowledge category.

Even as Americans who primarily turn to social media for political news are less aware and knowledgeable about a wide range of events and issues in the news, they are more likely than other Americans to have heard about a number of false or unproven claims.

This is an extensive article with numerous charts and  graphs. There is also a detailed methodology section.