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Significant Digits For Tuesday, March 7, 2017

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


The Supreme Court ruled 5-3 on Monday that verdicts could be thrown out due to racial bias during jury deliberations. The case revolved around a Colorado man convicted of sexual battery and a juror who made derogatory comments about Mexicans during the deliberations. Those comments came to light only after the verdict. [USA Today]

7 GOP senators

House Republicans have introduced their version of an Affordable Care Act repeal. It involves scrapping the individual mandate, rolling back the Medicaid expansion and overhauling the way tax credits are awarded. It’s complicated stuff, and just the first bid in what’s likely to be a long negotiation. Indeed, seven GOP senators have taken issue with the House bill — four who said the bill didn’t adequately protect constituents benefitting from Medicaid, and three who took the conservative line that the bill was too generous. [The New York Times, Vox]

70 percent

Percentage of U.S. dams that will be more than 50 years old by the year 2025. A dam is considered “high hazard” if its failure would kill people; 15,500 dams in America are “high hazard.” [E&E News]

883 cubic feet

Here’s the thing with going to Mars: It’s going to be really really cramped. Current recommendations for an eventual habitat are at least 883 cubic feet per person, or 5,300 cubic feet for a six person crew. For comparison, the International Space Station is 15,000 cubic feet, and even thats a bit of a tin can. [FiveThirtyEight]

1,000 coins

A green sea turtle in Thailand is recovering after undergoing surgery on Monday to remove the nearly 1,000 coins it had consumed. The turtle lived in a pool in Sri Racha where tourists would throw coins for luck. Approximately 11 pounds of metal were removed. “It is hard to imagine how it swallowed such a large number of coins,” said an extremely judgmental veterinarian who apparently has never heard of stress eating. [NPR]

$28 million

New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority gets part of its financing from a 50-cent charge on yellow cab taxi trips. Uber and other ride-hailing apps don’t contribute towards that and have cost the MTA $28 million since 2014. [The New York Times]

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

Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.