Talking Points: March 30,2020

March 30, 2020

The Black Death killed 20 million Europeans in the 14th century. Venice, a major trade port, grew nervous. If a ship was suspected of harboring the plague, it had to wait 40 days before any passengers or goods could come ashore. Venice built a quarantine center on an island off its coast, where sailors from plague-infested ships were sent either to get better or, more likely, to die. This 40-day waiting period became known as quarantinario, from the Italian word for 40. NPR January 26, 2020

“The shortest period of time known to mankind is the time between when it is too soon to buy stocks and when it is too late.” Mark Zinder

An average human adult consumes about 2,000 calories a day in food. That is roughly enough energy to run a 100-watt light bulb continuously. Today, humans use about 25 times that much energy per capita. In the U.S., the average is 95 times. The Wall Street Journal, March 19, 2020

“Man is the only animal that can remain on friendly terms with the victims he intends to eat until he eats them.” Samuel Butler

Coal now stands as the world’s most expensive fossil fuel on an energy-equivalent basis. Australian Newcastle Coal traded at $66.85 per ton Friday, March 20th, which is equivalent to a $27.36 priced barrel of oil. On that day, Brent Crude Oil Futures ended at $26.98 per barrel. Bloomberg, March 23, 2020

Since residents were ordered to shelter in place, demand for electricity in New York and San Francisco has been down between 300 to 600 megawatts- the equivalent of a midsize gas power plant. On a separate note, year-over-year, Marijuana sales are up 159% in California, up 100% in Washington state and up 46% in Colorado.E&E News, March 23, 2020

“Never let a good crisis go to waste.” Winston Churchill

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