Click to follow
Percentage of world population that is literate: 74

Number of illiterates: 1,400,000,000

Estimated years bomb-test polluted Runit Island in the Pacific must remain uninhabited: 25,000

Aircraft operated by world's armed forces: 60,000

By the world's civil airlines: 62,000

Percentage of Earth's fresh water in the Antarctic ice sheet: 90

Cost of America's Landsat satellite lost during launch: dollars 220,000,000

Cost of Aston Martin Vantage car: pounds 177,600

Sales of Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park in 24 countries: 7,000,000

Estimated wildcat gold prospectors in the Brazilian Amazon basin: 400,000

Estimated foxhunters in Britain: 200,000

Annual tobacco-related deaths in developing countries: 1,000,000

Predicted by 2025: 7,000,000

Square miles of forest in Malaysia in 1900: 125,000

In 1992: 27,000

Refugees and displaced people in Bosnia: 2,280,000

Daily visitors to Obala art gallery in besieged Sarajevo: 100

Marinas on the mud flats of the Solent: 26

Sources: Vital Signs, Worldwatch Institute/Earthscan; ibid; Joni Seager: Earth Follies; MoD/Aviation Data Inc; ibid; New Scientist 1892; New Scientist 1985; Autocar & Motor; Paris Match 2318; Geographical LXV-11; Cobham Resource Consultants (1990); OU/WHO; ibid; Guinness Book of Answers '93; ibid; UNHCR; Kate Hoey MP/Calum MacDonald MP/Malcolm Wicks MP (New Statesman & Society); New Scientist 1890.