Day: March 10, 2023

Vintage Viz: China’s Export Economy in the Early 20th Century

This post is by Chris Dickert from Visual Capitalist

View the full-resolution version of this infographic

Infographic showing China's export economy in the early 20th century (1914)

Vintage Viz: China’s Export Economy in the Early 20th Century

“The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there” is the oft-quoted first line of L.P. Hartley’s 1953 novel, The Go-Between.

A statement that is as profound as it is banal. In other words, when we do history, we’re a bit like tourists. If we really want to understand the past, we have to think like a local.

The infographic above, Aspects of Principal Exports of Chinese Goods to Foreign Countries, is the first in a series that we’re calling Vintage Viz, which presents a historical visualization along with the background and analytical tools to make sense of it.

Today, the People’s Republic of China is the second largest economy in the world, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, and a growing military power. But at the dawn of the 20th century, things were much, much different.

Opium and the Opening of China to the West

Early Sino-Western trade was restricted by the Qing emperors to three ports, and after 1757, just one, in what became known as the Canton System. This name came from the one remaining port city of the same name, present-day Guangzhou.

Foreign trade was tightly monitored and subject to stiff tariffs, and Western traders chafed under these restrictions. So when in 1839, Chinese authorities moved to shut down opium smuggling—an important source of profit for foreign merchants—Western powers saw their (Read more...)

Charted: Global Energy Consumption by Source, and Carbon Emissions (1900-2021)

This post is by Pallavi Rao from Visual Capitalist

Where does our energy come from, and how has this mix changed over the last 100 years?

These charts from Truman Du examine the complex relationship between energy production, consumption, and related carbon emissions using information from Our World in Data.

The World’s Energy Mix (1900-2021)

In the last 10 years, total global energy consumption has risen nearly 15%. Before that, between 2000 and 2010, it increased by nearly 25%.

And despite frequent headlines about green initiatives over the last few years, fossil fuels continue to account for the majority of total energy consumption.

This graphic shows the break up of the different sources of energy and how much they contribute to the total energy consumed in the world.

In 2021, 77% of global energy was sourced from coal, oil, and gas.

Even so, renewable energy sources like wind, solar, and hydro have gained traction since the year 2000. Hydropower was the biggest renewable energy source in 2021, accounting for 6.3% of total energy consumed.

A Fossil Fuel Heavy Mix

Taking a closer look at the breakdown of energy by source, another strong (if slightly counterintuitive) trend appears to be holding its own.

Coal has remained a key source of the world’s energy consumption since 1900. Despite its relative share decreasing over time, as of 2021, coal remains the second biggest energy source, accounting for 25% of the world’s energy needs. All figures below are in TWh (terrawatt-hours).

Global Energy Consumption19001950200020212021
Solar--3 TWh94 TWh2,702 TWh
Wind--93 TWh962 TWh4,872 TWh
Nuclear--7,323 TWh7,374 TWh7,031 (Read more...)

The Massive Impact of Cigarette Filters on Our Oceans

This post is by Chris Dickert from Visual Capitalist

The following content is sponsored by Greenbutts
Infographic showing the various ways plastic cigarettes harm ocean life and environments

The Massive Impact of Cigarette Filters on Our Oceans

Around 80% of the 6 trillion cigarettes purchased annually are littered, and many of those end up in oceans, adding to the global plastic problem.

Cigarette filters make their way to the world’s oceans through floods, runoff, and stormwater where they cause significant harm.

In this visualization, the second in our Single-Use Plastic Series, we look at the impact of plastic cigarette butts on our oceans for our sponsor, Greenbutts.

If I Counted Them, They Would Outnumber The Grains Of Sand

Ocean Conservancy volunteers have collected millions of filters from the world’s beaches and coastlines during the annualInternational Coastal Cleanup.

From the beach, cigarette filters are then washed out to sea. The OECD estimates that there is already a combined 139 million tons of plastic waste in seas, oceans, and rivers. In 2019 alone, 6.1 million tons of plastic waste entered aquatic environments, and 1.7 million tons into the world’s oceans. 

Cigarette Filters Harmful to Ocean Life

Because of their size and shape, shorebirds often mistake cigarette filters for food. In 2019, a Florida Audoban volunteer captured a heartbreaking photo of a black skimmer feeding a cigarette filter to its chick. Similarly, house sparrows and house finches sometimes use filters when building their nests.

Once in the ocean, fish can ingest (Read more...)

Charted: How Latin America Drove U.S. Immigration from 1970–2019

This post is by Avery Koop from Visual Capitalist

latam immigration driving U.S. growth

Charted: How LatAm Drove U.S. Immigration from 1970–2019

LatAm, otherwise known as Latin America, has been one of the biggest sources of immigration to the U.S. over the last one hundred years.

Since the 1970s, the region has driven the second wave of U.S. immigration and helped shape the country’s future immeasurably. This is especially clear when looking at Census data listing where people were born.

This chart from Latinometrics looks at the history of U.S. immigration considering both documented and undocumented immigration since 1850.

Historical U.S. Immigration

For most of its early history, Europeans drove immigration to the United States.

The UK, Ireland, and Germany were especially big sources of American immigrants well into the 20th century. But around the 1960-70s this began to shift, with LatAm countries marking the next wave of U.S. immigration.

ℹ LatAm includes all Central American, Caribbean, and South American countries.

Here’s a sample of the history of U.S. immigration using select years and regions:

🇲🇽 Mexico13.3K103.4K575.9K9.2M11.7M11.6M10.9M
Rest of Asia37736.7K379.0K6.2M7.9M8.8M9.2M
Rest of Latin America1.7K19.7K217.6K4.8M6.9M7.5M8.5M
Rest of Europe49.5K2.8M3.7M2.9M3.0M3.0M3.0M
🇮🇳 India-2.0K12.3K1.0M1.8M2.4M2.7M
🇨🇳 China, excluding Hong Kong and Taiwan75881.5K99.7K988.9K1.6M2.1M2.3M
🇨🇦 Canada14.8K1.2M952.5K820.8K (Read more...)

Deferred Thursday Tweets — Dems in Disarray and other favorites

We've been talking about consistently this here at the blog since 2015. All Trump has to say is "don't vote" and the GOP is screwed.

Tax tips for startups, content checkin including our go to sources for news, and indexing against…

This post is by MPD from @MPD - Medium

Tax tips for startups, content checkin including our go to sources for news, and indexing against sandbagging

Tax season is upon us so we decided to bring on a guest from the Interplay ecosystem to help break down some must-knows for startups when navigating the process. The guest is Kate Kelly, CEO and Co-Founder of Chelsea Capital. Chelsea Capital is a financial services company, offering alternative financing, accounting, tax, and fractional CFO services. Kate shares some great tax season tips for startups.

Here’s what’s covered during the other partner meeting segments:

  • Mike and I discuss our current content intake and strategies for consuming news.
  • Chris and I chat about the last round of Q4 earnings and how those earnings stacked up against estimates. We also chat about Foxconn’s announcement to open up new plants in India and what that means for China.



Listen via your preferred platform here.


Interplay Family Office LLC (“Interplay”) is registered as an investment adviser with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). Registration of an investment adviser does not imply any level of skill or training. Information about the qualifications and business practices of Interplay is available on the SEC’s website at Interplay only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or is excluded or exempted from registration requirements. Offering of asset management services through Interplay is pursuant to an (Read more...)