Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Georgia's Biggest Drinking Counties

As I mess with the 2016 county health data, I wondered (me, being me) which of the Georgia counties do the best (or worest) in excessive drinking. Of course my county, home of UGA, would score highest. Right? Nope. Not even close. Indeed there's a surprise or two in the data.

Below are the Top Ten Georgia counties in terms of percent who engaged in excessive drinking.

1. Chattahoochee (south of Columbus)
2. Liberty (south of Savannah)
3. Camden (on the coast)
4. Forsyth (exurb of Atlanta)
5. Bryan (also south of Savannah)
6. Oconee and Fulton (tie, Athens burb and ATL)
8. Effingham and Cherokee (tie, outside Savannah and Atlanta)
10. Chatham and Cobb (tie, Savannah and Atlanta)

What can we tell from the list above? There's a helluva lot of drinking in and around Savannah, perhaps because people live in and around Savannah. Keep in mind the percentages differences above are small. Chattahoochee clings to #1 based on 24 percent engaging in excessive drinking, while #2 comes in at 19 percent. All of the others range around 17 and 18 percent and you have to get to rank #30 before it gets down to 16 percent, so we're talking about minor differences likely within the margin of error.

Let's face it. If you had to live in some of the counties above, you'd drink too. Yeah, I'm talking about you, Forsyth and Oconee. White exurbs do well on this list. Drinking is all ya got, I suppose.

The least drinking is found in Clay County, with only 9 percent drinking to excess. That's down in the southwest corner and is the fifth-least populous county in the state. And maybe no liquor stories. Or they have better things to do down there.

And yet, and yet. Athens-Clarke County, home of UGA, only comes in tied at #26 in terms of excessive drinking, which is both shameful and a relief. Other nearby counties of note are Barrow (#18), Jackson (#30), and Oglethorpe (#40).

No comments: