My finding of the week: 77% of Brits think that the government should be allowed to 'tap people’s telephone conversations’ at the time of a suspected terrorist attack. Over half also think that they should be allowed to detain people for as long as they want without putting them on trial. Source: National Centre for Social Research.
The conviction rate for rape and attempted rape in Scotland has fallen to 39% in 2017/18 – the lowest level in eight years. Source: Scottish Government. The idea of cyber-crime and cyber-attacks most worries Americans and Britons, while other Europeans are more concerned about personal data and the material that children can access online. Source: YouGov. 45% of people with low incomes say their biggest everyday worry is money or debt, followed by physical health (38%). 8% say they have no daily concerns or worries. Source: National Centre for Social Research. Millennials typically pay £132 each month to live with their parents. When broken down, £68 is for rent, £31 for bills, and £33 for food. Source: Comparethemarket.com. When given the choice between humans and animals, 53% of Brits would rather donate to a charity that looks after humans. 34% opted for an animal charity, and 12% weren’t sure. Source: YouGov. Attitudes to sex before marriage, same-sex relationships, abortion, and pornography have all become more liberal since 1987, with views on euthanasia largely unchanged. Source: National Centre for Social Research. 94% of cannabis seized in the UK in 2016 was high-strength skunk. Source: King’s College London. 25% of East Midlanders and 16% of West Midlanders say their own region is part of the North of England. Source: YouGov. One in five US gun owners are members of the NRA. Source: Pew Research. In 2016, 64% of all US homicides were gun-related. There have been more than 90 mass shootings in the US since 1982. Source: Mother Jones. In England and Wales, gun-related deaths accounted for 4.5% of total homicides. Source: FBI/Home Office. In 2014, 33,594 people in the US were killed by guns: 21,386 were suicides, 11,008 were homicides, and 1,200 were accidental deaths and war casualties. Source: CDC/Mother Jones.
Recent weather disruption could reduce the UK's first-quarter GDP by 0.1%, or 0.2% if it continues. Source: EY Item Club. A business barometer has shown that Scottish businesses are returning to 'cautious optimism,’ with confidence levels rising 17 points and reaching 35% during February. Source: Bank of Scotland Commercial Banking. Greggs had a 7.4% rise in sales in 2017 to £960m. Source: Greggs.
96% of Brits consider maths and English to be the most important subjects taught at school. Only 3% believe that Latin is very important. Source: YouGov.
Blind people who use sound to navigate their surroundings use echolocation in a similar way to bats. They produce clicks that bounce off objects and 'sonify’ them into a picture of their environment. Source: Durham University. Even in the driest places on Earth – such as the Atacama desert – there are signs of life. Microbes survive there which have adapted to the extreme environment. Source: Technical University of Berlin. 55% of the world’s oceans are subject to industrial exploitation. The top global fishing nation is China – it clocked up over 16m hours of fishing in 2016. Source: Global Fishing Watch. King Penguins may become extinct due to climate change and overfishing in Antarctica. Source: Strasbourg University. A vault in the Arctic Circle which holds the world's most precious seeds now has over 1m deposits. Source: Crop Trust. By 2022, 50% of households will use voice-activated devices, such as Amazon’s Alexa, to buy their shopping. Source: OC&C.
Two-thirds of Scots are overweight or obese, including 29% of children. Source: Food Standards Scotland. Public satisfaction with GP services has fallen to 65% – the lowest level since records began in 1983. Source: British Social Attitudes survey. A new one-stop service could reduce the diagnosis time of prostate cancer from six weeks to a matter of days. Source: NHS England. 3.7m people in the UK have diabetes – double the number in 1998. Source: Diabetes UK. Cannabis users can develop schizophrenia and suffer from anxiety and paranoia. Source: King’s College London. UK millennials will be the most overweight since records began. More than seven out of 10 will be too fat by the time they reach middle age. Source: Cancer Research UK. People who drink fizzy, sugary soft drinks are more at risk of cancer. Source: Melbourne University/Cancer Council Victoria. Swimming in the sea increases the possibility of getting stomach bugs, ear aches and other illnesses. Source: Exeter University. There have been over 1,000 cases of Lassa fever in Nigeria this year. It has no cure and a fatality rate of 22%. Source: Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.
Dog owners walk more than 1,000 miles, play 2,080 games of fetch, and call their pet's name 3,120 times while walking them each year. Source: Harringtons. Visitor numbers to Edinburgh’s museums fell by 21%, from 500,000 to 400,000, in 2017 due to a reduction in opening hours. Source: Herald. Seven out of 10 teenagers claim to have received support from social media in challenging times. Source: Royal Society for Public Health. 36% of 2,000 diners surveyed say that waiting for the bill is the most frustrating aspect of eaing out. One in 20 admitted to walking out without paying. Source: Prezzo and Barclaycard. Ed Sheeran was the top-selling musician in the world in 2017. Source: International Federation of the Phonographic Industry.
One in eight Brits would refuse to sail on a ship called 'Titanic’. Source: YouGov. Being obsessed with taking selfies is a genuine condition called Selfitis. Source: Nottingham Trent University. A drop in pregnancy rates may indicate that a recession is on the way. Source: National Bureau of Economic Research. Millennials love avocado on toast, but 50% of over-60s have never tried it. Source: Chilean Blueberry Committee.