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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.
An exam room at the Planned Parenthood South Austin Health Center in Texas. REUTERS/Ilana Panich-Linsman

Who chooses abortion? More women than you might think

One in 4 US women receives an abortion sometime in her life. Who are the women who choose to end their pregnancies?
About 12.7 percent of Americans lived below the poverty line in 2016. StanislauV/shutterstock.com

Why the war on poverty in the US isn’t over, in 4 charts

A White House Council concluded that the war on poverty is "largely over." But, while poverty among seniors has declined, poverty among adults and children as changed little over the last 40 years.
For many, the job of a pilot has lost its luster. Emilian Danaila/shutterstock.com

The US is facing a serious shortage of airline pilots

Over the last three decades, the number of US pilots has decreased by 30 percent. That problem is only going to get worse as demand increases.
What do we really know about homelessness in the U.S.? Dmytro Zinkevych/shutterstock.com

Busting 3 common myths about homelessness

Are most homeless mentally ill? Is it inevitable that a society will have homeless people? A researcher digs into the real data on homelessness.
Pro-life and pro-choice protesters rallied outside the U.S. Supreme Court in June. REUTERS/Toya Sarno Jordan

How Roe v. Wade changed the lives of American women

Over the past 45 years, women have married later, attained higher education and joined the workforce in record numbers. Could it all be turned back?
Hurricane Harvey approaching the Texas Gulf Coast in August 2017. NOAA/Handout via Reuters

3 reasons why the US is vulnerable to big disasters

Large-scale emergencies can be a strain, even in one of the world's richest countries. Population growth, income inequality and fragile supply chains may make the problem worse.
A Border Patrol agent in New Mexico. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez

Today’s US-Mexico ‘border crisis’ in 6 charts

Undocumented entries across the border are at all-time lows. The people now arriving are not Mexican workers, but a smaller number of Central American families seeking to escape dire circumstances.
As of June 2018, the U.S. is short on 182 drugs and medical supplies, including IV bags. Sherry Yates Young/shutterstock.com

Drug shortages pose a public health crisis in the US

The US is currently short on 182 drugs and medical supplies. The problem isn't new, but it's frustrating health care workers.
Travel is up around the world – but not to the US. Rawpixel.com/shutterstock

Tourism to the US is in a ‘Trump slump’ - truth or fiction?

In 2016, the number of international tourists to the US dropped by more than 2 percent, while tourism trended upward worldwide. There are several explanations for the dip.
Where do baby boomers live? oneinchpunch/shutterstock.com

America’s graying population in 3 maps

Over the last 50 years, Americans have steadily gotten older, more bicoastal and less likely to move to a new city.
Cities and towns are becoming more technologically sophisticated – but remain vulnerable to attack. It Never Ends/Pixabay

Local governments’ cybersecurity crisis in 8 charts

Local governments don't pay much attention to cybersecurity, leaving them vulnerable to hijacking as happened to Atlanta and Baltimore.

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