How Much Is A Trillion?

With billions and even trillions of dollars bandied about like they were birdies in a badminton match, I started trying to get my mind around how much a trillion really is. One trillion (in the USA) is a 1 with twelve zeros. 1,000,000,000,000. Just to get an idea of how large that number is, I did a little comparison research.

The population of California is about 34 million. One trillion people would equal 29,500 Californias.

Texas is roughly 270,000 square miles. One trillion square miles would equal 3.7 million Texas size states.

Earth HologramOne trillion square miles is, in fact, about 20 Earths, since we have 50 billion square miles of land above sea level.

If you travel around the world at the equator 40 million times, you would travel one trillion miles.

One trillion dollar bills laid end-to-end would stretch from the earth to the sun … and back … with a lot of miles to spare.

The budget for the entire state of New York is $121 billion. With one trillion dollars, you could run 8 states the size of New York.

Dig a hole 50 feet deep and 100 feet wide and it would take about one trillion ONE HUNDRED DOLLAR bills to fill it up.

Niagara FallsRoughly 500,000 gallons fall over both sides of Niagara Falls each second. One trillion gallons would equal the amount of water that falls in a little over three weeks.

With one trillion dollars, you could buy 50 aircraft carriers such as the USS Ronald Reagan and outfit each of them with 45 of the newest fighter jet, the F-22 Raptor.

The US Department of State has a budget of only $36 billion. We could run the State Department for almost 30 years with one trillion dollars without even bothering to earn interest on that money.

Speaking of the shuttle, it costs $450 million to launch it. For one trillion dollars we could launch the shuttle over 2,200 times.

Excluding the cost of the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, we could run the entire Defense Department (most of which is pensions, btw) for 2 years with one trillion dollars.

The average annual premium that a health insurer charges an employer for a health plan covering a family of four is $12,700. For one trillion dollars, you could cover 78 million people with health insurance for one year.

For one trillion dollars, we could cover the estimated 46 million people without health insurance in the United States for almost 3 years.

One trillion dollars today would allow you buy Coca Cola, Apple, IBM, Bank of America, Ford, General Motors, Toyota, Motorola, AT&T, as well as Exxon Mobil and STILL have enough left over to live comfortably on just the interest from the billions left over– not to mention the profits these companies generate.

One trillion barrels of oil would fuel the ENTIRE WORLD for almost 35 years.

One trillion seconds is longer than all of recorded history, about 32,000 years.


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Photo Credits:

photo credit: Joe Shlabotnik

photo credit: ashwin kumar

photo credit: lrargerich