World Population

Population is the count of individuals residing in a specific area at a given time. In terms of nations, China holds the position of the most populous country, followed by India, the United States, Indonesia, and others. In Africa, Nigeria claims the top spot with an estimated population exceeding 160 million people.   Population Concepts […]

Population is the count of individuals residing in a specific area at a given time. In terms of nations, China holds the position of the most populous country, followed by India, the United States, Indonesia, and others. In Africa, Nigeria claims the top spot with an estimated population exceeding 160 million people.

 

Population Concepts

(a) Overpopulation: Overpopulation occurs when a country’s population surpasses the available resources, hindering people from enjoying the highest possible standard of living.

 

(b) Underpopulation: This occurs when a country’s population is less than the available resources, meaning the existing technology is insufficient to fully utilize the resources.

 

(c) Optimum Population: This is an ideal concept where the population is sufficient to maximize a country’s resources, leading to the highest possible standard of living.

 

(d) Population Density: Population density is the number of individuals per unit area of land or per square kilometer.

 

Mathematically,

Population density = Total Population divided by Land Area

 

Factors of Population Growth

Factors contributing to global population growth can be categorized into physical and human factors.

(a) Physical Factors:

  1. Climate: Favorable climates in Europe, the USA, and China attract high populations, while harsh climates in polar and desert regions deter population.
  2. Availability of Portable Water: Regions with good portable water, such as the USA, India, and Java (Indonesia), tend to attract populations.
  3. Relief: Lowlands and river valleys attract high populations, whereas high mountains and rugged hills do not.
  4. Soil: Fertile soil tends to attract populations.
  5. Presence of Mineral Resources: Areas with mineral resources like coal, petroleum, and iron ore may have higher populations.

 

(b) Human Factors:

  1. Agriculture: Intensive agricultural practices, as seen in Java, China, and India, contribute to high populations.
  2. Religious Beliefs: Religious beliefs, such as polygamy and early marriages in Islamic regions, encourage higher populations.
  3. Industry: Industrial regions, like Pittsburgh in the USA and the Ruhr in Germany, attract high populations.
  4. Immigration: Opportunities for employment in countries like the USA, Canada, and some European nations lead to increased populations.
  5. Good Transportation Network
  6. Improved Social Facilities: Access to amenities like pipe-borne water, electricity, and improved medical care attracts high populations.

 

Three Factors Responsible for High Population Growth:

  1. Favorable Climate
  2. Availability of Portable Water
  3. Presence of Mineral Resources

 

Pattern of World Population Distribution

World population distribution varies, with some areas densely or moderately populated and others sparsely populated.

 

(a) Very Densely Populated Parts:

  1. Industrial North
  2. Industrial North-Eastern USA
  3. Agricultural Monsoon Asia

 

(b) Moderately Populated Parts:

Cool temperate forests of Europe, Canada, and Asia, agricultural USA, Mediterranean Europe, Africa, and most parts of Southeast Asia.

 

(c) Very Sparsely Populated Parts:

  1. Cold polar lands of Arctic and Antarctica
  2. Canadian and Eurasian tundra, Greenland
  3. High mountains of Himalayas, Rockies, and parts of Andes
  4. Hot deserts like Kalahari, Atacama, Sahara
  5. Dense tropical rainforests like the Amazon basin, Congo basin

 

Problems of High Population Densities

  1. Pressure on natural resources
  2. Increase in crime rate
  3. Insufficient food
  4. Unemployment and underemployment
  5. Inadequate housing
  6. Traffic congestion
  7. Environmental pollution
  8. Pressure on social amenities
  9. Inadequate health services
  10. Development of slums and ghettos

 

Solutions To World Population Problems

  1. Family planning measures
  2. Discouraging early marriages
  3. Encouraging monogamy
  4. Providing gainful employment for women
  5. Consistent sex education in schools and mass media
  6. Encouragement of emigration
  7. Stiffening immigration laws

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