August 2016

Energy Future 2040

Oil prices are down significantly, while solar energy is on the march and  gleaming new wind turbines are spinning in greater numbers than ever. Has the tide finally shifted toward clean, renewable energy for the coming decades?  We wonder: What share of global energy demand will still be served by fossil fuels in 2040?

A. 12%
B. 38%
C. 57%
D. 78%
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Bangladesh: Still Not On the Global Radar

Bangladesh was the smallest of the four countries to emerge out of British colonial rule in the Indian subcontinent. Formerly known as East Pakistan, it has more people than either Russia or Japan. We wonder: Which of the following statements about today’s Bangladesh are true?

A. Its fertility rate is below the global average.
B. It is an integral part of global supply chains.
C. Media freedom is a big challenge.
D. It faces an imminent existential threat from climate change.
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Sizing Up Brazil

This month, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil hosts the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. The country has been on a roller coaster of late – politically, economically and socially. Which of these statements about Brazil are true?

A. It has the world’s fifth-largest population
B. It has Latin America’s second-largest proven oil reserves
C. It is the world’s seventh-largest economy
D. Economic inequality is much greater than in developed economies.
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Tax Freedom Day

One way to compare taxation levels between countries is to measure how many days worth of annual salary is paid into to fulfill national, state and local tax obligations. We wonder: Which of the following countries has the highest number of days of working before the tax burden of an annual salary is paid off?

A. France
B. Germany
C. Sweden
D. United States
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