Fascinating Fun Facts about Sustainability

So part of my marketing class is learning about marketing and the other half is watching made-for-TV documentaries about human consumption. They are actually pretty interesting videos, so I’m not complaining. I’m learning lots of interesting things from them.

For example:
– In China, 14,000 new cars hit the road every day.
– Walmart is the nation’s largest employer, with 1.4 million workers in the U.S.
– U.S. Custom and Border Protection only inspects from as low as 1% to around 8-10% of all containers entering the US.
– The tobacco industry overall every year pays somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 billion dollars just in taxes (from the seed, through the cigarette, and into the local municipal, state and federal taxes).

– One third of the world’s adult population smokes cigarettes.
– Tobacco is the largest non-food crop grown in the world today.
– When someone smokes, they are also inhaling formaldehyde, pesticides, and arsenic.
– If everyone in the world consumed as much as the average American, it would take the resources of four earths to support the planet’s population.
– The Himalayan glaciers are the planet’s largest store of fresh water outside of the polar ice caps. At the current rate of loss, it is estimated that there will be no more glaciers in the Himalayas by the year 2035 (25 years), dramatically reducing the flow of fresh water to more than a billion people.
– If you have all kinds of appliances that have a little red light on (like the TV), they’re using electricity. It’s called vampire loads. If every house in the U.S. killed off their wasted vampire loads (merely by unplugging their appliances), we could eliminate at least 18 coal-fired power plants.
– Cars produce nearly 20% of global greenhouse gases.
– The US has 5% of the world’s population but we’re consuming 30% of the world’s resources and creating 30% of the world’s waste.

– The average US person consumes twice as much as they did 50 years ago.

– Of the largest 100 economies in the world, 51 are corporations.
– 99% of the stuff we harvest, mine, process and transport is trashed within 6 months.
– Each person in the US are targeted with more than 3000 advertisers a day (more in one year than people 50 years ago saw in a lifetime).
– Each person in the US makes 4 1/2 pounds of garbage a day. That’s twice what we each made thirty years ago.
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