Add it up

Monday, September 22, 2008

Add It Up: Chronic Pain

Posted By on Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 9:00 AM

Pounds of marijuana seized during recent bust of “Gulf Cartel” drug ring in Atlanta: 51,147

At $200 per ounce, estimated cash value of marijuana seized: $163,670,400

Number of plastic bags required to sell seized marijuana in quarter-ounce portions: 3.27 million

At 85 joints per ounce, number of joints that can be rolled with 51,147 pounds of pot: 69,559,920

Number of Americans, out of 10, who report they regularly suffer physical pain: 4

Percent of those who say they’ve used marijuana to treat pain: 6

Percent of those who say they’ve used prescription drugs to treat pain: 60

Lowest price for one 40mg pill of narcotic painkiller Oxycontin at $6.47

At $200 per ounce of marijuana, the cost of a joint: $2.35

Sources: Atlanta Business Chronicle,, National Families in Action,, ABCNews, USA Today and the Stanford University Medical Center

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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Add It Up: The coast is clear

Posted By on Wed, Sep 3, 2008 at 6:41 PM

Number of major hurricanes to hit Georgia’s coast during the 19th century: 5

Number of major hurricanes to hit Georgia’s coast since 1900: 0

Number of Category 1 or 2 hurricanes to hit Georgia’s coast since 1900: 4

Years since last hurricane made landfall in Georgia: 29

People who used I-16 between Savannah and Macon to flee Hurricane Floyd in 1999: 2.5 million

Gallons of drinking water National Hurricane Center says family of four needs for a three-day evacuation: 12

Estimated damage caused by Floyd, which hit North Carolina as a Category 2 storm: $6 billion

Number of coastal Georgians who evacuated their homes in 1999 for Hurricane Floyd: 350,000

Population of coastal Georgia in 2000: 558,350

Projected population coastal Georgia in 2030: 844,161

Sources: Associated Press, Coastal Georgia Regional Development Center, Georgia Emergency Management Agency

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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Add It Up: Fill 'er up with Fay fluid

Posted By on Sat, Aug 30, 2008 at 6:44 AM

Number of tornado warnings issued last Tuesday in metro Atlanta because of Tropical Storm Fay: 5

Gallons of rain the tempest added to Lake Lanier, the metro area’s main source of drinking water: 22 billion

Number of days that additional water can last metro Atlanta: 50

Inches Lake Lanier rose last Monday and Tuesday thanks to the storm: 30

Number of feet the lake is still below full level: 15

Average number of gallons released daily from Lake Lanier this month: 1.2 billion

Number of years since the lake’s level has been that low: 52

Gallons that could be saved if pre-1993 metro Atlanta homes replaced their antiquated plumbing fixtures: 183 million

Percentage of respondents in a recent poll who said they were less concerned about the drought this year than they were in 2007: 48

Sources: Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Rasmussen Reports, Metropolitan North Georgia Water District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Add It Up: Greater Decatur

Posted By on Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 10:01 AM

Number of building permits issued in Decatur in 1995: 349

Number of building permits issued in Decatur in 2007: 822

Percent decrease in car volume at the intersection of Ponce de Leon Avenue and Church Street from 2001 to 2006: 20

Population of Decatur in 2000: 18,147

Population of Decatur in 2007: 17,914

Average household size in the U.S.: 2.58

Average household size in metro Atlanta: 2.7

Average household size in Decatur: 2.12

Source: City of Decatur 2008 Annual Report, Decatur Court Traffic Impact Analysis

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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Add It Up: Black Gold, Tifton Tea

Posted By on Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 10:35 AM

Earliest date new U.S. offshore drilling might produce oil for market: 2030

Earliest date oil from the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge might produce oil for market: 2018

Estimated amount offshore and ANWR drilling will lower the price of gasoline per gallon in 2025: 3.5 cents

Barrels of oil Americans use daily: 21 million

Barrels of oil Tifton agricultural scientist J.C. Bell says he can produce annually using bio-mass (non-food plant materials): 5 billion

Percent of current U.S. oil consumption 5 billion barrels equals: 65

Annual budget of Bell’s research facility: $60 million

Exxon-Mobil’s average daily profit during the first-quarter of 2008: $119.3 million

Sources: U.S. Department of Energy, Bell BioEnergy Labs, Tifton Gazette,

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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Add It Up: It’s smarter, it’s working, but it’s hurting

Posted By on Sun, Jun 15, 2008 at 10:07 AM

MARTA’s current budget deficit: $43 million

Number of positions MARTA plans to eliminate because of deficit: 180

Number of these 180 positions that are currently vacant: 130

Number of future MARTA newly created station-agent positions being offered to newly laid-off MARTA employees: 50

Amount by which MARTA’s revenue from local sales taxes was below expectations during first-quarter of 2008: $6.9 million

Amount MARTA spent on fuel last year: $13.4 million

Amount MARTA expects to spend on fuel this year: $17.6 million

Number of trips MARTA passengers took in April 2007: 11,999,867

Number of trips MARTA passengers took in April 2008: 12,800,276

Amount MARTA contributes to Atlanta’s gross regional product: $476 million

Amount state contributed this year to MARTA needs: 0

Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution, MARTA,, Mass Transit Magazine, Creative Loafing

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Monday, June 9, 2008

Add It Up: Purple State

Posted By on Mon, Jun 9, 2008 at 10:00 AM

Amount Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign has raised in Georgia: $1,305,275

Amount Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign has raised in Georgia: $2,458,219

Number of votes Obama received in 2008 Democratic Presidential Primary: 704,247

Number of votes McCain received in 2008 Georgia Republican Presidential Primary: 304,751

Number of votes Sen. John Kerry received in 2004 Georgia Democratic Presidential Primary: 293,265

Number of votes George W. Bush received in 2000 Georgia Republican Primary: 430,480

Number of votes Libertarian candidate for President Bob Barr received in 2000 to win Georgia’s 7th District Congressional seat: 126,312

Number of votes independent candidate for President H. Ross Perot received in Georgia in 1992: 309,657

Last time a Democrat won Georgia in a presidential election: 1992

Sources: Center For Responsive Politics, Georgia Secretary of State

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Add It Up: Can’t Add It Up

Posted By on Mon, May 26, 2008 at 10:00 AM

Percentage range of Georgia sixth and seventh graders who failed the state social studies exam: 70-80

Approximate percentage of Georgia eighth-graders who failed the state math exam: 40

Percentage of Georgia eighth graders who failed math exam last year: 19

Percentage of eighth graders required to pass state math exam before advancing to high school: 100

Georgia’s high school graduation rate in 2007: 72.3

Percentage of students who took it who passed Georgia’s high school graduation test in 2007: 79

Average SAT score in Georgia in 2007: 1,472

States with higher average SAT score than Georgia in 2007: 45

Sources: AJC, Georgia Department of Education.


Monday, May 19, 2008

Add It Up: Mother Nature gets cut first

Posted By on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 10:00 AM

Estimated City of Atlanta budget shortfall in 2009: $140 million

Percentage of Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs budget Mayor Franklin proposes cutting: 15

Positions cut from the parks department in 1993 and 1998 due to budget concerns: 137

Positions cut from the parks department in 2002 due to budget concerns: 127

Approximate number of parks department employees today: 315

City recreation centers that will close temporarily this summer: 11

Recreation centers that will close permanently this summer: 2

Percentage total land in Atlanta devoted to public parks: 4.5

Park-related spending in Seattle per resident in 2005: $266

Park-related spending in Atlanta per resident in 2005: $91

Sources: City of Atlanta, Park Pride, Trust for Public Land

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Add It Up: Local Lungs

Posted By on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 10:00 AM

Percent of Americans who live in counties with unhealthful levels of ozone or particle pollution: 40

Rank of Metro Atlanta among cities most polluted by year-round ozone: 12

Rank of Metro Atlanta among cities most polluted by year-round particle pollution: 6

Rank of Plant Bowen, a Georgia Power coal electricity plant in Cartersville, among national producers of smog-causing sulfur dioxide: 1

Days in 2007 when Atlanta’s air quality was rated “Good” based on Environmental Protection Agency standards: 113

Days in 2000 when Atlanta’s air quality was rated “Good” based on EPA standards: 76

People in Atlanta’s five core counties with asthma or chronic bronchitis: 384,547

Population of metro Atlanta in 2007: 4,029,400

Projected population of metro Atlanta area in 2030: 5,261,534

Sources: American Lung Association, Atlanta Regional Commission, Environmental Integrity Project, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Environmental Protection Division.

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