Aug 30, 2017

Harvey, by the numbers

David J. Phillip / AP

With 51.88 inches of rain recorded near Mont Belvieu, Texas, Tropical Storm Harvey has broken the 48-inch record for rainfall in the continental U.S. and may break the all-U.S. record of 52 inches in Hawaii. Here are the key numbers which paint the human and economic impact of on one of the worst natural disasters to strike the U.S. in recent memory:

  • 31 deaths confirmed as of Wednesday afternoon, per NYT.
  • 2nd landfall as Harvey hits Louisiana.
  • 24.5 trillion gallons of rain have fallen in Texas and Louisiana, with 19 trillion in Texas and 5.5 trillion in Louisiana, per WaPo.
  • $50 billion in damages, according to an early estimate reported by the Houston Chronicle.
  • 13 million people directly affected by the storm, and subject to flood warnings.
  • 1 million liters of water and 1 million meals sent to Texas by FEMA.
  • 13,000 rescues in Houston and surrounding areas as of Tuesday night.
  • 200,000 people have asked FEMA for federal assistance, with hundreds of thousands more projected.
  • 12,000 guardsmen serving affected areas, including the entire Texas National Guard.
  • 800 active duty soldiers serving affected areas.
  • 30,000 people displaced across more than 230 shelters.
  • 215,000 students out of school in Houston.
  • 130 mph sustained winds when Harvey made landfall last Friday as a Category 4 hurricane.

Go deeper

Sanders' big socialism rebrand

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Bernie Sanders is trying to rebrand socialism in the U.S., but he'll have to overcome common fears about what the word means — fears the Trump campaign is watching and waiting to exploit.

Why it matters: Sanders may face a major challenge in convincing Americans in their 40s or older that there's a meaningful difference between what he supports, described as democratic socialism, and the authoritarian socialism that we've seen in regimes like Venezuela.

The next frontier for Big Science

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

In 1945, engineer and science administrator Vannevar Bush laid out a framework for support of science in the U.S. that drove prosperity and American dominance. That model isn't enough anymore, experts said at an event this week in Washington, D.C.

The big picture: With China threatening to overtake the U.S. in R&D spending even as research becomes more international, science must manage the tension between cooperation and competition.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 12 mins ago - Science

U.S. and Taliban sign peace deal

US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad (L) and Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar (R) sign a peace agreement during a ceremony in Qatar. Photo: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP via Getty Images

The United States signed a peace deal with the Taliban in Doha, Qatar on Saturday after over a year of off-and-on negotiations, The New York Times reports.

Why it matters: The signing of the deal officially begins the process to end the United States' longest war, which has spanned nearly two decades. The agreement sets a timetable to pull the remaining 13,000 American troops out of Afghanistan, per the Times, but is contingent on the Taliban's completion of commitments, including breaking ties with international terrorist groups, such as al Qaeda.