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How Did American Politics Become So Polarized
At Emory University, you will find an Atlanta, Georgia-based private, national research university with a history of working collaboratively for positive transformation in the world through courageous leadership in teaching, research, scholarship, health care, and social action. Emory is known for its outstanding liberal arts colleges and superb professional schools, a long-standing commitment to great teaching by great faculty, and for having one of the leading health care systems in the South.
Emory is home to nearly 7,000 undergraduates, 20 percent of whom hail from Georgia. Every other state and 65 countries also are represented. Admission to Emory College is highly selective— about fourteen high school students apply for every opening in the first-year class—and Emory consistently ranks among the top 20 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey.
Emory’s location in the vibrant, international city of Atlanta is a tremendous asset. Atlanta provides limitless opportunities for student learning and service, as well as fun and entertainment for students, faculty, and staff. Emory collaborates with numerous Atlanta-based organizations such as The Carter Center, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Alan Abramowitz is the Barkley Professor of Political Science at Emory, and a renowned expert on national politics and elections. His expertise includes election forecasting models, party realignment in the United States, congressional elections and the effects of political campaigns on the electorate. His latest book is "The Disappearing Center: Engaged Citizens, Polarization, and American Democracy."
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Frequent shopping for single items adds to our carbon footprint.
- A new study shows e-commerce sites like Amazon leave larger greenhouse gas footprints than retail stores.
- Ordering online from retail stores has an even smaller footprint than going to the store yourself.
- Greening efforts by major e-commerce sites won't curb wasteful consumer habits. Consolidating online orders can make a difference.
A pile of recycled cardboard sits on the ground at Recology's Recycle Central on January 4, 2018 in San Francisco, California.
Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images<p>A large part of the reason is speed. In a competitive market, pure players use the equation, <em>speed + convenience</em>, to drive adoption. This is especially relevant to the "last mile" GHG footprint: the distance between the distribution center and the consumer.</p><p>Interestingly, the smallest GHG footprint occurs when you order directly from a physical store—even smaller than going there yourself. Pure players, such as Amazon, are the greatest offenders. Variables like geographic location matter; the team looked at shopping in the UK, the US, China, and the Netherlands. </p><p>Sadegh Shahmohammadi, a PhD student at the Netherlands' Radboud University and corresponding author of the paper, <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/26/tech/greenhouse-gas-emissions-retail/index.html" target="_blank">says</a> the above "pattern holds true in countries where people mostly drive. It really depends on the country and consumer behavior there."</p><p>The researchers write that this year-and-a-half long study pushes back on previous research that claims online shopping to be better in terms of GHG footprints.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"They have, however, compared the GHG emissions per shopping event and did not consider the link between the retail channels and the basket size, which leads to a different conclusion than that of the current study."</p><p>Online retail is where convenience trumps environment: people tend to order one item at a time when shopping on pure player sites, whereas they stock up on multiple items when visiting a store. Consumers will sometimes order a number of separate items over the course of a week rather than making one trip to purchase everything they need. </p><p>While greening efforts by online retailers are important, until a shift in consumer attitude changes, the current carbon footprint will be a hard obstacle to overcome. Amazon is trying to have it both ways—carbon-free and convenience addicted—and the math isn't adding up. If you need to order things, do it online, but try to consolidate your purchases as much as possible.</p><p>--</p><p><em>Stay in touch with Derek on <a href="http://www.twitter.com/derekberes" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DerekBeresdotcom" target="_blank">Facebook</a> and <a href="https://derekberes.substack.com/" target="_blank">Substack</a>. His next book is</em> "<em>Hero's Dose: The Case For Psychedelics in Ritual and Therapy."</em></p>