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Significant Digits For Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.

6 months

An 18-year-old has been sentenced to six months in prison for attempting to smuggle an endangered tiger cub into the U.S. The tiger’s all good, and was transferred to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. [ABC News]


6 days

Six days after the shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, the amount of media coverage appears to be greater than normally seen this long after such events. The 3 percent or so of airtime CNN, MSNBC and Fox News devoted to it nearly a week on exceeds that given to the mass shootings in San Bernardino, Tucson and Sandy Hook. [Vox]


41 percent

That’s the share of global production of uranium that originates in Kazakhstan, followed by Canada (16 percent), Australia (9 percent), Niger (7 percent), Namibia (6 percent), some other countries and then the U.S. at 3 percent. The domestic uranium business has been in decline for decades and has been pushing for protection from the government to sustain it. [FiveThirtyEight]


431 women

That’s the number of women who are running or will likely run for the House of Representatives at latest count, compared to 212 women who were running at this point in 2016. The vast majority are Democrats. Also, twice as many women are running for the U.S. Senate and some 80 women are competing in gubernatorial contests. Wonder what’s motivating all these women to get to Washington? What could it be? We may never know. [NPR]


74,500 tons

In 2017, demand for cobalt to be used in batteries for electric vehicles and other lithium-ion batteries was at 55,400 tons. By 2020, that’s projected to rise to 74,500 tons, and then 159,900 tons by 2025 and 324,300 tons in 2030. Apple sees this, and is moving to buy long-term supplies of cobalt directly from those who mine it rather than the companies that make their batteries as they do now. [Bloomberg]


5.7 billion

In 2005, the 1.1 billion packages that the U.S. Postal Service transported made up 3 percent of its revenue. In 2017, the USPS shipped 5.7 billion packages, accounting for 28 percent of revenue. That shift has made the USPS robust in the age of email, but an increase in volume from Amazon is giving them trouble. [The Nation]


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If you see a significant digit in the wild, send it to @WaltHickey.

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.

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