Articles on Charts

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Santa Clara County produced more patents than any other U.S. county in recent history. MintImages/shutterstock.com

Why some counties are powerhouses for innovation

When it comes to innovation, Santa Clara County is way ahead of the rest of the US. Between 2000 and 2015, more than 140,000 patents were granted there – triple the number of the next-ranked county.
Hotels and motels along major highways are common spots for sex trafficking. Ken Stocker/shutterstock.com

Sex trafficking in the US: 4 questions answered

New England Patriots CEO Robert Kraft's criminal charges in a suspected sex trafficking case draw new attention to this illicit underground economy.
Children can get quite expensive. silentalex88/Shutterstock.com

The soaring cost of US child care, in 5 charts

Sen. Warren is proposing universal child care as a way to rein in the soaring costs of raising a family. A sociologist explains what’s driving the trend.
Old technology, but not obsolete. suksawad/Shutterstock.com

Why do people still use fax machines?

It's 2019. And yet faxing is still often more secure, easier to use and better suited to existing work habits than computer-based messaging.
A man holds up a joint during a 2017 rally to support the legalization of marijuana in Washington, D.C. AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Why do so many Americans now support legalizing marijuana?

As politically polarized as the country may seem, when it comes to marijuana, Americans across the spectrum have changed their minds. A new study says it's all thanks to the media.
A man at a recovery center in Youngstown, Ohio, smokes a cigarette, June 15, 2017. David Dermer/AP Photo

Who’s smoking now, and why it matters

For those who don't smoke cigarettes, the dangers may seem distant. Yet smoking still kills millions each year. A new study suggests that e-cigarettes might curb this public health tragedy.
Since the Great Recession, the employment rate has gone up — but some rural groups lag behind. Josh Sorenson

Rural people with disabilities are still struggling to recover from the recession

There's a notable disparity between the rate of employment for people with and without disabilities, especially in certain pockets of the US.
Millions of tons of plastic are manufactured every year. Bert Kaufmann/Wikimedia

The world of plastics, in numbers

In 2015, over 320 million tons of polymers, excluding fibers, were manufactured across the globe.
California’s San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station was shut down in 2013. julius fekete/shutterstock.com

The demise of US nuclear power in 4 charts

Commercial nuclear reactors provide roughly one-fifth of the electricity produced in the US. But they face grave threats to their continued operation.

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