The Page That Counts: Spring 2012

Estimated average student debt of 2011 college graduates: $27,200; Percentage of 2011 college graduates moving back into their parents’ house: 85.
Landfill photo by D'Arcy Norman

Photo by D'Arcy Norman.

Percentage of 5,006 Occupy Wall Street protesters surveyed who identified politically as Independent: 70.2  [1]

Percentage of U.S. registered voters identified as Independent: 35  [2]

Percentage of U.S. Congress identified as Independent: .004  [3]


Estimated average student debt of 2011 college graduates: $27,200 [4]


Pounds of leaves that end up bagged in landfills each year: 8 million

Percentage of all necessary nutrients trees can glean from decomposing leaves: 50 to 80 [6]


Estimated number of barrels of oil recoverable from Alberta’s tar sand deposits: 171.3 billion [7]

Gallons of water required to extract all recoverable barrels: 2.7 trillion [8]

Years that 2.7 trillion gallons could supply Seattle with potable water: 57 [9]


Pounds of recyclable office paper thrown into landfills in 2005: 42 million

In 2009: 26 million [10]


Percentage by which the value of the minimum wage has increased since 1990: 21

Percentage by which the cost of living has increased since 1990: 67 [11]


Effective tax rate Warren Buffet, the second richest man in the United States, paid in 2010: 17.4

Average effective tax rate paid by his staff members in 2010: 36 [12]


Average number of text messages sent or received per day by adults ages 18–24: 109.5

By adults ages 45–54: 14 [13]

Percentage of Facebook users ages 18–34 who check their account before getting out of bed in the morning: 28 [14]


Number of American adults unemployed and seeking work in October 2011: 13.9 million

Number of job openings: 3.3 million [15]


Estimated miles driven by Walmart’s truck fleet in 2011: 700 million [16]

Gallons of diesel fuel consumed, based on the 6.3 miles per gallon average for diesel freight trucks: 111.1 million [17]

Gallons of oil leaked into the Gulf of Mexico from BP’s 2010 oil spill: 205.8 million [18]


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