In 2017, the CDC recorded 2,813,503 deaths in the United States. That's an average of 7,708 per day. But averages can be misleading. While that's the average, there is wide variability depending on the time of year. Specifically, people are far likelier to die during one extreme temperature season than the other.
On climate policy, Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez believe there is no middle ground. AOC said, "You're either fighting for our future or you're not," which sounds an awful lot like, "You're either with us or against us." This is wrong and counterproductive.
There's a new position paper, and it's pretty strict. Good environmental deeds do not compensate for bad environmental behavior. Take the carbon credits and taxes off the table. Half measures are over in the fight to save the species.
The Lancet continues its year-long series on non-communicable diseases, turning now to the pandemic caused by Big Food, climate change, transportation and energy systems. But there's just something not quite right about its proffered solutions, which include the governmental nudges of taxes and banishing Big Food -- and it's cronies -- from policy discussions.
Contrary to wide-eyed speculation and fearmongering, coffee is not going extinct. Coffee bean production is up, and prices are down.
Recently, in a room full of microbiologists, this question was posed: "How many of you believe climate change is the world's #1 threat?" Silence. Not a single person's hand was raised. Were they all rejecting science? No, not at all. They just didn't see it as threatening as antibiotic resistance, pandemic disease or geopolitical instability.
"Every night on the television news now is like a nature hike through the Book of Revelation," lamented the former vice president in his opening remarks for the Climate & Health Meeting. After all these years, he still has a warped penchant for apocalyptic exaggeration.
There's little doubt why the CDC shelved the meeting. The Trump Administration is skeptical of anthropogenic climate change, so somebody – perhaps President Trump himself – made a call and that was that. Journalists will surely go berserk, but they shouldn't, because climate change falls well outside the CDC's area of expertise.
Ben & Jerry's wants us to believe that global warming, while catastrophic enough in its own right, could also deprive us of some of our favorite dessert flavors. Immediate action is necessary, the company implores us, or the chocolate, nuts and coffee used as ingredients could vanish from the Earth. By rolling out this disingenuous marketing gimmick the ice cream maker must think its customers are dimwitted rubes with no ability to engage in critical thinking.
People prefer to ignore scientific reality in favor of politically correct myths. Specifically, we incorrectly interpret (positive) statements that describe the world as it is to be (normative) statements that prescribe the world as it ought to be. This confusion impedes scientific progress.
As a society, we never grew up beyond high school. Not being smart continues to be cool. Rejecting the collective wisdom of scientists, economists, academics, and journalists is applauded. Spurning the "establishment" has become the new national pastime.
The scientific enterprise is something of a paradox. Science moves incrementally, and the status quo is preferred to radical new ideas. Yet, simultaneously, creativity is encouraged, but scientists who become too creative can become outcasts. Let’s consider a few of those here.