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Author Topic: Earth. Overpopulated or not?  (Read 5546 times)

Deozaan

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Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« on: April 27, 2006, 12:57:34 PM »
Quote
Were I an arguing man, I'd say sucking a cigarette does more to serve an overpopulated planet than potentially contributing further to the gene pool

This planet isn't overpopulated. You could fit the entire world's population in the state of Utah and still not have the population density of New York City. While Utah may not be the most desirable place to live, the point is that there is plenty of room on this planet for more people.

Comment by brotherS: this is a split post, coming from http://www.donationc...index.php?topic=3403 and being very off-topic there :)

« Last Edit: April 27, 2006, 01:06:05 PM by brotherS »

brotherS

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2006, 01:04:36 PM »
This planet isn't overpopulated. You could fit the entire world's population in the state of Utah and still not have the population density of New York City. While Utah may not be the most desirable place to live, the point is that there is plenty of room on this planet for more people.
Since you didn't use a smiley I take it you don't mean that as a joke? Sure, you can pile people up like in New York, but there are plenty of other problems to consider. Just google "war over water" - and that's just the start.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2006, 01:17:18 PM »
Er ... if the entire planet was populated to the density of New York where would you grow food?

What we have to remember is that cities aren't natural places to live - the countryside is. In the UK we are running out of countryside at a huge rate as it is covered in concrete for roads and new houses.

The other thing you need to consider is that there are huge tracts of land on the planet that are either incapable of supporting human life on a large scale (eg. most of Australia, most of Brazil, the Arctic) or else no one wants to live there (eg. Utah - just kidding)

brotherS

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2006, 01:21:06 PM »
Er ... if the entire planet was populated to the density of New York where would you grow food?
Soylent Green? :-\

Deozaan

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2006, 01:37:06 PM »
Er ... if the entire planet was populated to the density of New York where would you grow food?

If the entire planet was in an area the size of little 'ol Utah, there would be plenty of room to grow food.

I don't think everyone should up and move to a Utah sized area. Obviously that isn't going to happen. Nor do I think that the world will suddenly (to use a cliché) multiply like rabbits and fill up to the point of every habitable area being as dense as Ney York City. The point was that we could all live in such a small area and still be more comfortable than the millions of people currently residing in New York City, which means there is plenty of room for people to spread out in this very underpopulated (or, if you prefer, not-even-close-to-being-overpopulated) world.


allen

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2006, 02:10:27 PM »
Until there is sufficient (if not equal) food for all, I consider this planet grossly overpopulated.  While I understand even in old times, someone (probably a dumbass lost in the woods, and evolutionarily deserving to die as something other than "the strongest) would starve to death -- but bottom line is, when entire nations are starving there's a problem.  Space is not an indication of vacancy -- Adding a city block worth of space to an over-crowded restaurant may bring it within fire code, but it won't increase the potential patronage without first accommodating many other needs -- kitchen, staff, consumables and tables not withstanding.

"Earth" and "Population" are much more than a ratio of earth mass to man mass.  There are great cultural and economic considerations that must be considered, as population is only as stable as the bodies that represent it.  While the majority of the earth's patrons may not be starving, I can assure you --with great confidence-- that continuing to increase the population will in no way alleviate the problem(s).  Is the earth so short of space we couldn't possibly fit another body on it? No.  We could cram billions more onto the surface of the earth easily -- and even more if we wanted to start burrowing.   Is there evidence to suggest there is more life on this planet than can be supported without extreme social and economic changes throughout the world? Undeniably yes.

Don't mistake me for benevolent, though -- I'm not personally concerned -- I'm admittedly a misanthrope.  I'd pretty much keep calling it over-populated until I could count the population on my fingers.  Fortunately, evidence supports my claim at the time.

On the upside, I'm sure we'll destroy ourselves well before we find out just how many we can cram in this phone booth.
« Last Edit: April 27, 2006, 02:12:54 PM by allen »

Deozaan

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2006, 02:49:47 PM »
Until there is sufficient (if not equal) food for all, I consider this planet grossly overpopulated.  While I understand even in old times, someone (probably a dumbass lost in the woods, and evolutionarily deserving to die as something other than "the strongest) would starve to death -- but bottom line is, when entire nations are starving there's a problem.  Space is not an indication of vacancy -- Adding a city block worth of space to an over-crowded restaurant may bring it within fire code, but it won't increase the potential patronage without first accommodating many other needs -- kitchen, staff, consumables and tables not withstanding.

"Earth" and "Population" are much more than a ratio of earth mass to man mass.  There are great cultural and economic considerations that must be considered, as population is only as stable as the bodies that represent it.  While the majority of the earth's patrons may not be starving, I can assure you --with great confidence-- that continuing to increase the population will in no way alleviate the problem(s).  Is the earth so short of space we couldn't possibly fit another body on it? No.  We could cram billions more onto the surface of the earth easily -- and even more if we wanted to start burrowing.   Is there evidence to suggest there is more life on this planet than can be supported without extreme social and economic changes throughout the world? Undeniably yes.

Don't mistake me for benevolent, though -- I'm not personally concerned -- I'm admittedly a misanthrope.  I'd pretty much keep calling it over-populated until I could count the population on my fingers.  Fortunately, evidence supports my claim at the time.

On the upside, I'm sure we'll destroy ourselves well before we find out just how many we can cram in this phone booth.

You make many wonderful points, Allen. Such necessary social and economic changes are absolutely possible. There isn't really any (good) excuse as to why the world can't be fed right now. The earth is fertile and can easily support its measly 6 billion (seems we've been stuck at 6 billion since I was in grade-school and perhaps beyond) people living on it. We have the technology. We have the ability. If our government (and all others) would get out of debt and start spending wisely there is no reason why we can't make the world a better place.

Even though there are starving countries I still don't consider the world overpopulated. It's just uncared for. We, as a country and as the world's population, have the ability to make it happen. I know this sounds like naive ideals to the jaded, but really it is absolutely possible. But just as you said, Allen, extreme social and economic (and probably other) changes would be required to pull this off. That doesn't make it impossible. Just more difficult.


allen

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2006, 03:00:56 PM »
We have the technology. We have the ability. If our government (and all others) would get out of debt and start spending wisely[...]{snip}

This is precisely why it is impossible -- or at the -very- least, extremely (monumentally extremely) improbable. There's a reason the hungry become hungrier while 1st world nations get fatter and more unhealthy, compensating by pouring money into medicine.  We're a territorial, and oft violent, species that at best takes care of its immediate own.

The idea that we could right all the wrongs is a pipe dream -- you're taking into consideration the economic ramifications but ignoring the social/cultural matters of humanity.  We've never all teamed up for the better good of the species -- we destroy or let the weak die out and take what they had.

I still stand by the statement that the earth is overpopulated -- sure, it could be overcome with technology -- but it would require a shift of cultural, of state of mind, that is well outside the general human paradigm.  There'll be a good scourge or two before anything so drastic is a reality.  It won't be in any of our life times.

nudone

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2006, 01:25:22 AM »
i refrained from making a post for fear of sounding like an idiot - thankfully, allen has been able to express my thoughts for me in a far more consise and cogent form. thank you.

Rover

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2006, 09:01:31 AM »
Quote from: allen said
Until there is sufficient (if not equal) food for all, I consider this planet grossly overpopulated.

There is plenty of food available.  The problem is that the leaders of the starving countries will not distribute it.  The US Govn't has been paying farmers to NOT grow crops for years, because our extreme over production drives the price down too low.

The problem, as always, revoles around the people involved, not the technology or supply.

Is the Earth overpopulated?  Considering the idiots involved, maybe.  If things worked right; no.
Insert Brilliant Sig line here

allen

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2006, 09:41:41 AM »
The problem, as always, revoles around the people involved, not the technology or supply.
Is the Earth overpopulated?  Considering the idiots involved, maybe.  If things worked right; no.

As I said before, I do not believe this to be strictly, if at all, a resource issue -- but is there any way to not consider the people involved, since they are the central axis of the issue? Mankind is the very heart of the discussion -- every other factor is connected by a single pintle--mankind.

In order to believe these matters could ever be resolved one would absolutely have to believe in altruism -- which (and this is another discussion altogether) I don't believe exists as it would require a certain selflessness that would transcend even the notion of satisfaction for doing "good things".  At any rate, if one can maintain a belief in altruism they need to take it much further -- as this process would require universal altruism from the bottom to the top of society.  It would essentially require a unified, global commune to truly be effective.  At minimum, it would require significant sacrifice on the part of not just governments, but the industry itself.  It's just not possible -- every time a new pair of legs kicks, the odds surmount.

The current fuel fiasco comes to mind -- after Katrina devastated the South and the oil prices magically started soaring, it comes out of our pockets.  While I'm paying more for gas, the oil companies are making record profits.  They're not taking a hit, here--I am.  When there are significant tragedies or problems at hand, the general machine that is humanity does not reach out to coddle, though it may offer its condolences just before it pounces and takes full advantage.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2006, 09:44:14 AM by allen »

Carol Haynes

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2006, 10:18:04 AM »
Quote
The current fuel fiasco comes to mind -- after Katrina devastated the South and the oil prices magically started soaring, it comes out of our pockets.  While I'm paying more for gas, the oil companies are making record profits.  They're not taking a hit, here--I am.  When there are significant tragedies or problems at hand, the general machine that is humanity does not reach out to coddle, though it may offer its condolences just before it pounces and takes full advantage.

LOL - if you want to see fuel prices head to the UK. Even at current prices in the US UK fuel is still more than twice the price per litre! And then the UK government wonders why UK business struggles to be competitive!

allen

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2006, 10:27:19 AM »
Indeed!  Free enterprise, the bottom line is the dollar sign -- not global well-being.  People spend more when they're stretched thin, as what little they may have at the end of the month is a luxury and saving seems a pipe dream.  Pressed for cash? Throw more money at the wind, what have you got to lose?

World peace and happiness isn't in the better interest of industry -- and at the end of the day, even the government is at the mercy of the will of industry.

Baseman

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2006, 12:36:33 PM »
As a certified organic vegetable and nut and fruit grower the problem with vegetables is that by the time they reach the consumer the price has increase by three times the amount therefore people cannot afford to buy the produce and let me say one thing if you think the farmers getting rich forget about it...Example:...I sell cocktail tomatoes to large supermarkets for R3.50 for 350grm ...When you as a customer, go and purchase the same packet of tomatoes you pay R18.. if not more...Remember we got to buy our own packaging,pay for the electricity to run the borehole pumps plus the staff and transport...Do you see me getting rich?...Hell no I cannot even afford to make up a pay packet for myself...The big problem  as I've said is the cost...BUT if everyone became self sufficient and could start a small garden in their back yard and grew veggies enough for their families and did continuations well It could help leviate the problem of poor families from starving or lack of vitimins ect...
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« Last Edit: April 28, 2006, 12:38:46 PM by Baseman »

allen

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2006, 12:42:24 PM »
I grew up in the heartland, I know the little farmers aren't getting rich -- I should be more specific -- it's the big industries that are making the money and destroying the "ideal" society. Family owned farms are increasingly rarely profitable -- there won't be room for private farms in a few more generations -- safe for those who -are- self sufficient.  Self-sufficience would be bad for the government/big business -- that would be revenue/tax dollars lost.  Not going to hapen -- just like we won't use a more efficient/cost-effective means of fuel until we can no longer profit from oil. Even then, there'll be enough markup--they'll be making more than they do now, anyway.

Baseman

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2006, 04:51:32 AM »
True what you say...I suppose they'll always have the upper hand in all industries...Ever heard of the 'New World Order'?
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gjehle

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Re: Earth. Overpopulated or not?
« Reply #16 on: May 05, 2006, 08:08:31 AM »
hehe, it was mentioned several times, but for all your comp sci peeps
the whole thing in simple words:

ressource conflicts lead to deadlocks
and scheduling to starvation

;)

tho i _think_ right now there would be enough food to feed everyone
since a DAMN lot of food produced in the "western world" is unused and thrown away.

i'm not implying anything with that, having enough ressources doesn't mean having a blanco cheque for population growth
« Last Edit: May 05, 2006, 08:10:42 AM by gjehle »