Interesting overpopulation facts

Most populated countries in the world.

The most populated countries in the world are China (1.3 billion people). This is followed by India (1.2 billion people), the United States of America (329 million people), Indonesia (262 million people) and Brazil (208 million people). All these figures are approximated.

In the US, California is the most populated state with about 39 million people. The population per square mile is 253. This does not make California overpopulated. The population density is very low, compared to the population density of the District of Columbia, which has a population density of about 11,350 people per square mile.

Destruction of forest lands for urban use.

More than 80 million acres of forests and wetland habitats have been destroyed in Florida, USA, in the past 50 years alone. In 1990 about 19 acres of forest and wetlands were converted to urban use.

Pressure on water resources.

Population explosion in settlements along the US-Mexico border (The Chihuahuan Desert) has placed great pressure on water. As a result, water from the Rio Grande River has been diverted from its natural course for irrigation purposes.

Overpopulation and loss of species.

Here is evidence of the loss of species resulting from human actions and pressure on water: In Africa, 42% of all freshwater mollusks are globally threatened and in Europe, 68% of endemic freshwater mollusks (mollusks are shelly seafood such as shrimps, prawns, crabs, crayfish and lobsters) are globally threatened by habitat loss, pollution and the development of dams. “Most of the drivers of biodiversity loss, including species extinctions, are economic in nature,” says Dr Simon Stuart, Chair, IUCN Species Survival Commission.

Changing world demographics.

The demographic processes (population growth, age distribution, urbanization, and migration) of the global population are changing. By 2050, 22% of the world’s population is expected to be 60 years old or older, up from 10% in 2005. Nearly half of the world’s population is under the age of 25 years. In Africa and Asia, the urban population is expected to double between the years 2000 and 2030. By the year 2030, the towns and cities of the developing world will make up an estimated 81% of urban humanity.


Some of our reading resources for the lesson included the following:

2. National Wildlife Federation, in a report titled Population and the Environment, content/uploads/2013/07/
effects_of_overpopulation_wildlife.pdf (accessed on July 7, 2018)
3. (Taken from The Chihuahuan Desert:
A Life-filled Landscape, by Christopher Williams.)
4. Press Release, Securing the web of life, 19 June 2012, ISSN 2307-8235
International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.
5. The United Nations World Water Development Report 3,
6. NCHS Data Brief ■ No. 456 ■ December 2022. Mortality in the United States, 2021. Jiaquan Xu, M.D., Sherry L. Murphy, B.S., Kenneth D. Kochanek, M.A., and Elizabeth Arias, Ph.D.