Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Category Archives: Poverty

ReFED Releases New Food Waste Estimates and Calls for Increased Action by Food System

“ReFED has released new estimates on the extent, causes, and impacts of food loss and waste in the United States, as well as an updated analysis of the solutions needed to fight it. The findings represent a stark call to action for food businesses, funders, policymakers, and other food system stakeholders to dramatically ramp up the investments, operational changes, and policy shifts that are critical to cutting the amount of food going to waste in the country. The new data comes from the ReFED Insights Engine, an online hub for data and solutions that features the most comprehensive examination of food waste in the U.S., now updated to include estimates through 2021. According to ReFED, in 2021 the U.S. generated 91 million tons of “surplus food,” defined as all food that goes unsold or uneaten. This represents 38% of U.S. food supply and contributes nearly 6% of the country’s annual greenhouse gas emissions – the equivalent of driving 83 million passenger vehicles for one full year. Close to 50% of this surplus was generated by households, with another 20% generated by consumer-facing businesses. And while 80% of total surplus food was edible parts, less than 2% was donated. Beyond emissions, producing food that goes unsold or uneaten uses 22% of U.S. freshwater and 16% of cropland. Wasted food is also a drain on the economy, since food that goes uneaten still costs money to grow, harvest, transport, cool, prepare, and then ultimately dispose of. ReFED’s analysis places the value of food that went unsold or uneaten at $444 billion in 2021, approximately 2% of U.S. GDP. What’s more, the amount of food that goes uneaten is the equivalent of 149 billion meals’ worth of food that could have gone to the 10% of Americans who struggle with food insecurity…In addition to detailing the parameters of the food waste challenge, ReFED modeled 42 food waste solutions to determine which were the most effective at reducing loss and waste for each sector of the supply chain and based on key impacts, including total food waste diversion, greenhouse gas reductions, net financial benefits, and more. Implementing these solutions across the food system would cost approximately $18 billion per year. However, this would deliver an annual net economic benefit of $74 billion – a four-to-one return. In addition, each year, it would result in GHG emissions reductions of 109M metric tons of CO2e and water savings of 6T gallons, and it would save the equivalent of 4.3 billion meals for people in need. Over ten years, it would also result in 60,000 new jobs. Ambitious implementation of these modeled solutions could reduce the amount of surplus food by 21 million tons or 23%. In addition, ReFED has identified 31 solutions that have not yet been modeled, but would help reduce overall food surplus. Although ReFED’s model has a broader scope than what’s included in the national goal, our analysis indicates that significant increases in investment and implementation will be required to meet the 2030 goal of a 50% reduction in food waste…”

WHO releases the largest global collection of health inequality data

“Today, WHO is launching the Health Inequality Data Repository, the most comprehensive global collection of publicly available disaggregated data and evidence on population health and its determinants. The repository allows for tracking health inequalities across population groups and over time, by breaking down data according to group characteristics, ranging from education level to ethnicity. The… Continue Reading

Alexander Skarsgård Explains the Answer to Everything

The New York Times – (It Involves Doing Some Math – Opinion / Video) “Partha Dasgupta is a Cambridge University economist who in 2021 prepared a more than 600-page report for the British government about the financial value of nature. Not your average bedtime reading. But believe us when we say his report, the culmination… Continue Reading

Freedom in the World 2023

Freedom House – Marking 50 Years in the Struggle for Democracy – Key Findings Global freedom declined for the 17th consecutive year.  Moscow’s war of aggression led to devastating human rights atrocities in Ukraine. New coups and other attempts to undermine representative government destabilized Burkina Faso, Tunisia, Peru, and Brazil. Previous years’ coups and ongoing… Continue Reading

Unpriced climate risk and the potential consequences of overvaluation in US housing markets

Gourevitch, J.D., Kousky, C., Liao, Y.(. et al. Unpriced climate risk and the potential consequences of overvaluation in US housing markets. Nat. Clim. Chang. (2023). “Climate change impacts threaten the stability of the US housing market. In response to growing concerns that increasing costs of flooding are not fully captured in property values, we… Continue Reading

Strengthening and Democratizing the U.S. Artificial Intelligence Innovation Ecosystem

Strengthening and Democratizing the U.S. Artificial Intelligence Innovation Ecosystem: An Implementation Plan for a National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource. National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource Task Force, January 2023. “Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing our country and our world. From how citizens navigate their daily lives to how researchers drive discoveries in the lab to how… Continue Reading

The State of Open Humanitarian Data 2023

A report by the UN’s Humanitarian Data Exchange. “This report was produced in February 2023 by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Centre for Humanitarian Data, which manages the Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX) platform…In our fourth year of producing The State of Open Humanitarian Data, we can report the highest… Continue Reading

New Online Tool Provides Health Snapshot of All 435 U.S. Congressional Districts

“Today, researchers at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), unveiled the Congressional District Health Dashboard (CDHD), a new online tool that provides critical health data for all 435 congressional districts and the District of Columbia. The dashboard incorporates 36 key measures of health, such as deaths from… Continue Reading

Google will pay $9.5 million to settle Washington DC AG’s location-tracking lawsuit

engadget: “Google has agreed to pay $9.5 million to settle a lawsuit brought by Washington DC Attorney General Karl Racine, who accused the company earlier this year of “deceiving users and invading their privacy.” Google has also agreed to change some of its practices, primarily concerning how it informs users about collecting, storing and using… Continue Reading

The End of Roe v Wade and New Legal Frontiers on the Constitutional Right to Abortion

Cohen, I. Glenn and Murray, Melissa and Gostin, Lawrence O., The End of Roe v Wade and New Legal Frontiers on the Constitutional Right to Abortion (July 8, 2022). The Journal of the American Medical Association, published online July 8, 2022, at E1-E2. (2022). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 2460. DOI No.: 10.1001/jama.2022.12397… Continue Reading

Understanding the decline in poverty will help us continue the decline

Clinical Trends: “The past quarter century witnessed an unprecedented decline in child poverty rates. In 1993, the initial year of this decline, more than one in four children in the United States lived in families whose economic resources—including household income and government benefits—were below the federal government’s Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) threshold. Twenty-six years later,… Continue Reading

Pandemic creates new billionaire every 30 hours — now a million people could fall into extreme poverty at same rate in 2022

“As the cost of essential goods rises faster than it has in decades, billionaires in the food and energy sectors are increasing their fortunes by $1 billion every two days. For every new billionaire created during the pandemic — one every 30 hours — nearly a million people could be pushed into extreme poverty in… Continue Reading