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Tuesday, January 23, 2024

News Factoids for Fourth Quarter 2023

Danish Road Safety Council video "The helmet has always been a good idea"
watch full 6/2021 safety video [2:20] online at YouTube

The International Energy Agency expects global electricity generated via renewables to increase to 35 percent in 2025.

Haymarket Books Will Provide Free Black History E-Books to Florida Students
Books are "dangerous to those in power ... that's why we publish them," Haymarket Books said in a press release.

In January 2023, six times more work was happening remotely than in January 2019, according to WFH (work from home) Research, a data-collection project.

Merriam-Webster announced in November 2023 that it has chosen 'authentic' as its 2023 word of the year, a sign of the influence of artificial intelligence and 'celebrity culture, identity, and social media' on the English language. "The rise of AI helped drive interest in the word," said the dictionary's editor at large, Peter Sokolowski. "The line between 'real' and 'fake' has become increasingly blurred. As a result, in social media and marketing, authentic has become the gold standard for building trust — and authenticity, ironically, has become a performance." Merriam-Webster also highlighted other words that were in the spotlight this year, including 'deepfake' and 'dystopian'.

The hottest job in the U.S. pays $80,000 a year, no college degree needed — it’s wind turbine technician. (per Businessweek)

U.S. life expectancy is struggling to rebound from the pandemic. Life expectancy in 2022 rose more than a full year, to 77.5 years, per new C.D.C. data. This is mostly because of a drop in covid-19 deaths. But life expectancy progress remains slow because drug overdoses, homicides, and chronic illnesses such as heart disease are continuing to drive a mortality crisis in the U.S. compared to similar countries.

Traditional Chinese medicine teaches that a balanced qi (life energy, pronounced 'chee') is the path to health.
• Americans spend $3.5 billion each year on acupuncture.
• 1.5% of Americans have tried acupuncture to date.
• There are 38,000 licensed acupuncturists in the US.

INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY: Because seaweed is so effective at carbon capture, climate research - and funding - is examining whether more of it could mitigate global warming. Enter seaweed farming, where macroalgae is grown as a marine crop. Traditionally, seaweed has come from Asian nations: last year, Asia produced 98% of the globe’s farmed seaweed. Now seaweed farms are cropping up around the world. They’re off the coasts of Maine, around Australia, and in the seas of Scandinavia; in the last decade, the world’s production has grown nearly 75%.

Retail prices for sugar and sweets increased because of drought by 8.9% in 2023 and are set to rise 5.6% in 2024. Coffee and olive oil prices also rose in 2023 due to drought.

Copyright 2024 by G.E. Nordell, all rights reserved

Monday, January 15, 2024

Martin Heinrich and Dr. King

"The work before us is not easy, but as Dr. King taught us,
the time is always ripe to do what is right."
U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich, Dem-NM