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Section 31.6 Most Populated and Least Populated States

If we want to dig into patterns in pollution, there are many hypotheses we might want to test:
  • Maybe bigger states have more stuff and that leads to more pollution?
  • Maybe smaller states have more things crammed into a smaller place, and that leads to more pollution?
  • Maybe richer states have more industry, and that leads to more pollution?
  • Maybe poorer states are home to more polluting industries like coal-powered factories and that leads to more pollution?
  • Maybe more populous states have more people (so more cars and houses…) and that leads to more pollution?
To try to answer these questions, we need to calculate the average pollution for a specific state.
We will also need some data about which states are large and small and which are richer and poorer. The top three largest states in population are:
Table 31.6.1.
State Population
California 38,332,521
Texas 26,448,193
New York 19,651,127
And the three smallest are:
Table 31.6.2.
State Population
District of Columbia 646,449
Vermont 626,630
Wyoming 582,658
The three largest states in land area are Alaska, Texas, and California. The three smallest are Connecticut, Delaware, and Rhode Island.
The three richest states (by per capita income) are Maryland, Alaska, and New Jersey. The three poorest are Arkansas, West Virginia, and Mississippi.
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