A week really is a long time in politics, and we’ve had quite a few rocky ones recently. The ink was barely dry on the referendum ballots before Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation and into the fray stepped two female forces to be reckoned with. Having seen off Liam Fox and Michael Gove, Theresa May and Andrea Leadsom looked set to battle it out to become leader of the Conservative Party and the next PM. And then there was one.
It’s not exactly an event to celebrate, but the 25th May was International Missing Children’s Day. The numbers regarding missing children are so enormous and so shocking that it’s hard to fathom why there is so little coverage of the issue beyond the few headline grabbing cases which make the news each year. Hollywood portrayals of kidnappings and high-profile cases such as Madeleine McCann and the Chibok schoolgirls could lead you to believe there is an epidemic in child abductions worldwide, but the word ‘missing’ is a catch-all term covering all manner of disappearances.
Worldwide, an estimated eight million children go missing annually. An average 800,000 children per year go missing in the United States alone, or roughly 2,160 a day. In Canada more than 50,000 go missing, alongside 230,000 in the United Kingdom and 40,000 in Brazil. In Mexico the number is 45,000 and in Germany it’s 100,000.
Last month earthquakes hit the headlines in a big way. On 15th April Japan was struck by two quakes just twenty minutes apart, the first measuring 7 on the Richter scale and the second, slightly smaller tremor at a magnitude of 5.7. Although the US Geological Survey (USGS) said they were unrelated, Ecuador was hit the following day by a massive 7.8 magnitude quake - the largest the country has suffered since 1979.
In both cases hundreds of people were killed, injured and left homeless. In all this tragedy, what do the statistics tell us about earthquakes?
As you may already know, May is National Pet Month in America while the UK celebrated its four-legged friends throughout April. Both Britain and the US are pet-loving nations, and that fact is borne out in some truly staggering statistics around pet ownership on both sides of the pond.
Data gathered by the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA) puts the UK’s pet population at 57 million in 2016, with an estimated 11 million homes (or 40%) owning at least one animal. In the age-old battle of dogs versus cats, the hounds come out on top - almost a quarter of those households (24%) are dog owners, beating cats into second place (17%). The rest of the pet preference landscape looks like this:
Statistics published in The Lancet medical journal earlier this month have shown that there are now more people who tip the scales as obese or overweight than those who can be described as clinically underweight. The figures, put together with the help of the World Health Organization (WHO), reveal an alarming increase in obesity over the past forty years, with over 10% of men worldwide now classed as obese and one in seven women.
There are some lovely charts to be taken from all the figures swirling around The Lancet’s report. Firstly, some number-crunching to find the fattest countries on the planet yielded some surprising results. You could be forgiven for expecting the United States to be the chubbiest nation, but the home of the cheeseburger, hot dog and milkshake comes in quite a long way down the list with roughly a third (33%) of the population classed as dangerously overweight.