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Chapter 2 Population Issue 1: Distribution of World Population

The study of population is critically important for three reasons: The world’s population increased at a faster rate during the second half of the 20 th century than ever before in history. Virtually all global population growth is concentrated in LDC. More people are alive at this time – more than 7 billion—than at any time in human history.

The scientific study of population characteristics is called demography.

Overpopulation is not as much an issue of the population of the world but instead, the relationship between number of people on the earth and available resources. Locally, geographers find that overpopulation is currently a threat in some regions of the world but not in others. It depends on each regions balance between population and resources. Overpopulation- when the available resources cannot support the number of people

Population Growth 0 AD 250 Million People 1803 AD 1 Billion People 1903 AD 1.6 Billion People 1950 AD 3.0 Billion People 1987 AD 5.0 Billion People 1998 AD 6.0 Billion People 2011 AD 7.0 Billion People 2025 c. AD8.0 Billion People c. 2050 c. AD9.0 Billion People c.

Dot Map of World Population – On this map, one dot represents 100,000 people Population Distribution – Descriptions of locations on the Earth’s surface where individuals or groups (depending on the scale) live.

World Population Distribution Fig. 2-2: World population is very unevenly distributed across the Earth’s surface and it can be compared to climate distribution.

Top 10 Population Rank (2014) RankCountryPopulation 1China 1,355,692,576 2India 1,236,344,631 4/3*United States 318,892,103 5/4Indonesia 253,609,643 6/5Brazil 202,656,788 7/6Pakistan 196,174,380 8/7Nigeria 177,155,754 9/8Bangladesh 166,280,712 10/9Russia 142,470,272 11/10Japan 127,103,388 World7,290,892,994 1/27/15 *Number ranking has shifted due to the introduction of the EU

Bangladesh TFR April 25th 2012

Rank Country Population 230/231 Montserrat 5,118/ 5,140/ 5164/ 5,215 231/232 Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) 3,140/ 3,140/ 3140/ 2,840 232/233 Norfolk Island 2,155/ 2,169/ 2182/ 2,210 233/234 Svalbard 2,067/ 2,019/ 1,970/ 1,872 234/235 Christmas Island 1,402/ 1,402/ 1496 /1,530 235/236 Tokelau 1,400/ 1,384/ 1368/ 1,337 236/237 Niue 1,354/ 1,311/ 1269/ 1,190 237/238 Holy See (Vatican City) 829/ 832/ 836/ 842 238/239 Cocos (Keeling) Islands NA/ 596/ 596/ 596 239/240 Pitcairn Islands 47/ 48/ 48/ 48 Bottom 10 Population Rank (2010/2011/2012/2014) Rank numbering changed due to the addition of the European Union

Rank CountryPopulation/Land Area 231 Montserrat 5,215/ 39 sq. mi. 232 Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) 2,840/ 4,700 sq. mi. 233 Norfolk Island 2,210/ 13 sq. mi. 234 Svalbard 1,872/ 23,957 sq mi. 235 Christmas Island 1,530/ 52 sq. mi. 236 Tokelau 1,337/ 4 sq. mi. 237 Niue 1,190/ 100 sq. mi. 238 Holy See (Vatican City) 842/ 0 sq. mi. 239 Cocos (Keeling) Islands 596/ 5 sq. mi. 240 Pitcairn Islands 48/ 18 sq. mi. Bottom 10 Pop/Land area

The Most Populous Regions Two-thirds of the world’s population is clustered in four regions: 1. East Asia 2. South Asia 3. Southeast Asia 4. Europe

Fig. 2-1: This cartogram displays countries by the size of their population rather than their land area. (Only countries with 50 million or more people are named.)

East Asia – China The largest cluster of inhabitants is in East Asia. 20% of the world’s people live in this region. 83% of the people in this region live in China The most populous country in the world is China

East Asia – Japan & Korea Japan and South Korea’s population is distributed differently and is also not uniform. Here, more 75% of the Japanese and Koreans live in urban areas.

South Asia The 2nd-largest concentration of people, roughly 20% of the worlds population, is in South Asia. India is the world’s 2 nd most populous country and it contains more than 75% of the South Asia population concentration.

Europe Combining the populations of Western & Eastern Europe and the European Russia forms the world’s 3rd-largest population cluster. 11% of the world’s people live in this region. 75% of Europe’s inhabitants live in cities (more than any other region). Interestingly, they import food and other resources.

Southeast Asia The world’s 4th-largest population cluster, after Europe, is in Southeast Asia, mostly on a series of islands at 647 million people. Indonesia, which consists of 13,677 islands, is the world’s fourth most populous country.

The United States & Canada The largest population concentration in the Western Hemisphere is in the northeastern United States and southeastern Canada. About 2% of the world’s people live in these areas. An interesting point is that less than 5% of the people in this area are farmers.

Sparsely Populated Regions Relatively few human beings live in regions that are too dry, too wet, too cold, or too mountainous for activities such as agriculture. The portion of Earth’s surface occupied by permanent human settlement is called the ecumene. In Latin America, there are many people who live in the High Lands…temperatures and precipitation are more tolerable than at lower elevations.

Expansion of the Ecumene 5000 B.C.–A.D. 1900 Fig. 2-3: The ecumene, or the portion of the Earth with permanent human settlement, has expanded to cover most of the world’s land area. 75% of world population lives on only 5% of the Earth’s surface

Arithmetic Population Density Fig. 2-4: Arithmetic population density is the number of people per total land area. The highest densities are found in parts of Asia and Europe.

Arithmetic Population Density Arithmetic Density (crude), or the total number of people divided by total land area For example, the US has about 319 million people and about 9 million square kilometers of land space. As A result, the US has an arithmetic density of 35 people per sq kilometer (319million/9 million). (34-35 2012-2014) We may compare the AD of individual countries in order to get an idea about how population is distributed.

AD- limitations As useful as arithmetic density is, it doesn’t tell us anything about population distribution within individual countries. Clearly, most countries include both urban and rural areas, with large variations in population distributions. Another limitation is that AD gives us only a broad idea about the strain the population might put on the land areas.

Physiological Density Fig. 2-5: Physiological density is the number of people per arable land area. This is a good measure of the relation between population and agricultural resources in a society.

Physiological Density PD measures the pressure that people may place on the land to produce enough food. It divides the number of people into sq kilometers of arable land, land that is suited for agriculture. So even though Egypt is comparatively sparsely populated, with an arithmetic density of 74, its physiological density is more than 3500! Since so much of Egypt is desert, its people put a great deal of pressure on the arable land, giving the country a very high physiological density.

Egypt’s population distribution is closely linked to the proximity of water. In the north, the population clusters along the Mediterranean and in the interior, along the banks of the Nile River. (2004)

Two countries can have similar physiological densities, but they may produce significantly different amounts of food because of different economic conditions. Agricultural density is the ratio of the number of farmers to the amount of arable land. For example, the US has a very low AgD, 4 farmers per sq kilometer of arable land, compared to Egypt’s, 1,401 farmers per sq kilometer of arable land. To understand the relationship between population and resources in a country, geographers examine its physiological and agricultural densities together. Agricultural Density

Differences between: MDC’s AgD vs. LDC’s AgD MDCs have lower AgD because ____________and __________allow a few people to farm extensive land areas and feed many people. Technology and finance This frees most of the MDC population to work in factories, offices, or shops rather than in the fields

Carrying Capacity It is important to consider PD when thinking about overpopulation or the circumstance of too many people for the land to support. Carrying Capacity, the number of people an area can support on a sustained basis

Carrying Capacity It’s not a consistent figure, and it depends largely on the area’s level of technology. For example, a region whose farmers make use of irrigation and fertilizers can support many more people than a region whose farmers do not.

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