Comments on: ■ If the world’s population lived like… https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/ Tue, 02 Jun 2015 14:30:43 +0000 hourly 1 By: Viktor https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5475 Tue, 19 Aug 2014 05:54:42 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5475 As I know, people in cities live much more eco-friendly. They consume less fuel for transportation, use less territory for living and less resources are wasted because of more efficiency and labour division. It might be important adjustment.

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By: SomberDayz https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5474 Thu, 05 Jun 2014 08:39:12 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5474 No, reason number 1 to start taking population reduction seriously! No population slowing but reversal. And before anyone says that I am suggesting ANY kind of killing or culling, I am NOT. I repeat I am not suggesting anyone die or be killed. I am suggesting there be a serious push (in Asia especially) to reduce population via birth control. The whole world needs to reduce numbers in order to leave some natural environment and resources intact. Our ecosystem is failing us…it is weak and fatigued from carrying the heavy load of humanity for the past 10,000 years and especially from the last 50 years.

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By: SomberDayz https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5473 Thu, 05 Jun 2014 08:29:18 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5473 Its not that simple. Methane– released during fracking, and during the general use of natural gas (stoves, etc) and as by-product from raising “meat” animals– is much worst and longer lasting than CO2. (Watch Years of Living Dangerously, Ep 5.) Also, at the hand of man, the oceans are over fished and polluted. At the encrouchment of Man, species after species are driven to extinction, forests disappear, water ways dry up and wild places are destroyed.

Asia is overrunning the planet, making 60% of our global population, with Africa coming in second. All these billions of people strive for the over-consumption, resource sucking, eco-cide lifestyle of European and North American people. Imagine the horror when and if they do become like us. Our environment will plummet like a streaking comet burning up in the atmosphere–ending with fizzle and moan.

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By: Dodgy Geezer https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5472 Sun, 30 Mar 2014 10:45:44 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5472 All of these predictions about living space invariably make one huge erroneous assumption. That is, that the Earth’s population expands or changes its living requirement in some way (everyone living like Americans is a common proposal), but that the Earth’s resource capability STAYS THE SAME AS TODAYS.

Unsurprisingly, this proposal results in shortage and failure. But, of course, this will never happen. BY DEFINITION the Earth’s resources are JUST ENOUGH to support the current population. Always. There is no point, for instance, in increasing arable land to provide more food than can be consumed at any one time. If population increases or people require more food per head, more output is provided by agriculture. Historically, this has ALWAYS happened

I see that the graphics above suggest that, if everyone were to live like an American, we would need 4 times the Earth’s food output. The implication is that this is impossible. And yet agriculture has already provided an approximate 4-fold increase in output since 1950.

Resource provision is NOT FIXED. It depends on raw materials and human ingenuity, and the latter is infinite. All the Malthusian forecasts of doom assume that whatever we have now is all we CAN have, and they have ALWAYS been wrong in that assumption.

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By: Six https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5471 Sat, 29 Mar 2014 15:44:15 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5471 Just what stuff does America produce? Now think of something that we produce that is useful and productive, what is it? We still make cars? A consuming machine. We produce GMOs, bad movies, bad food ( low in nutrition and high in pesticides), and export war and war machines. Wow, those other countries really should produce like us!

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By: Bruce in Iloilo https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5470 Sat, 22 Feb 2014 04:44:51 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5470 Interesting graphic which should make us all think, including think about what flaws there may be in it. I always remember that “there are three types of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics”.

What this doesn’t consider is the role each country plays in the global economy. The U.S. economy uses a larger-than-average proportion of the world’s economy (to put it mildly) and it benefits more than just the US population. There is a difference between the population of the US and the population that benefits from the US economy. The US economy and its environmental footprint are supporting more people than the US population. The US is not a self-contained economy any more than the Fairfield county or Marin county is. The US is the rich, gated community of the world. It’s the world’s Silicon Valley, Marin County, Fairfield County, etc.

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By: Jon https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5469 Mon, 13 Jan 2014 22:30:23 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5469 Wow…. I still think it was nice and makes people think, thats hard enuf to do now-a-days :-) I dont think you were going for your masters thesis here, so I doubt it matters if you took every single consideration out to the Nth degree….. AND the fact that you took a lot of time to put this together when the rest of us bums here are just throwing out our opinions as if they really matter….. Nice Job, it def. helps encourage/remind me to be more resourceful and less wasteful.

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By: Jon https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5468 Mon, 13 Jan 2014 22:11:06 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5468 First, very nice and informative. Definitely makes one think and appreciate what we have.

It appears as if we humans do not live very wisely/frugally on this earth. We do take life and the earth’s and God’s abundance for granted, don’t we? It is also nice to see that unlike the current trend of always bashing America for all the worlds problems, that there are others on this earth who also waste and take for granted and need to wake up, not just us – fat, lazy, arrogant, creator of ALL the worlds problems, abusing, greedy Americans (Yes, i get tired of always hearing how terrible America is, yet every time there is a catastrophe, every one calls on or just expects the USA to be there helping ) we are ALL in this together, all contribute to the problem and can ALL contribute to the solution, finger pointing is just a waste of time and alienates everyone away from a unified solution. Anyways, i get sidetracked and vent, sorry. This should have people thinking about tomorrow and how we are in this together, like it or not and that we can create a solution….together, and enjoy life to the fullest….together, or we can just waste it all away and eliminate ourselves right off of the face of this beautiful earth….together :-)

Look at the earth/life and appreciate it as if the glass is half full but prepare and live as if the glass is half empty.

IDK, that is my $0.02 worth, thanks for the graphics.

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By: Nick Cobb https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5467 Mon, 13 Jan 2014 14:16:29 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5467 Are these infographics available for reposting, Tim?

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By: Joshua https://persquaremile.com/2012/08/08/if-the-worlds-population-lived-like/#comment-5466 Tue, 19 Nov 2013 06:04:48 +0000 https://persquaremile.com/?p=3993#comment-5466 Isn’t this inherently biased if the country you’re comparing happens to be in an area with low resource density? It also doesn’t seem to take into account any kind of interconnectivity and resource sharing between nations that would necessarily reduce the “sub-footprint”. I’m not criticizing the source, I’m questioning your application of the data. For example the UAE occupies a desert land, and probably requires large areas to produce what could be produced in a much smaller area elsewhere. Does this map take that into account at all? Because the model theorizes if the human population were to use the UAE’s footprint, but perhaps their footprint is out of necessity and should they occupy more fertile land (as projected) they wouldn’t need nearly as much. Rendering the map useless for such a projection.

The next obvious variable is resource consumption vs. trade. The U.S. consumes a lot, but it also produces more than it consumes in several industries. Does this map at all take into account excess production? It would have to be subtracted from overall need for supply since that over production is necessarily going to those people you claim need 3 more Earths to fit on.

Another issue is population density vs. consumption. UAE and the US are both extremely low density population areas, which probably played a large factor in this graph, which would also render it inaccurate. Much of the US is quite habitable, just uninhabited and subsequently undeveloped. Does this model take into account that there is a massive amount of space and resources within the US that aren’t being utilized, purely out of economic reasons, because it’s cheaper to source elsewhere, than out of physical needs. This chart presumes physical and economic needs are the same. This is inaccurate, and many of those extra Earths could probably be sourced right out of the US and other locations that don’t fully utilize their space. The model doesn’t say if people lived as densely as the US, it’s a model about space NEEDED, and about 90% of the US isn’t currently needed and your model presumes it is.

The final factor, which I’m sure you think is most important is wealth. Obviously more wealthy people can waste more resources. So this chart doesn’t just presume everyone is living together, it also presumes everyone is as wealthy as the average American or Arab in the Emirates. This is a completely different issue entirely unaccounted for in the model. If the whole world were this wealthy a multitude of projects could be created to vastly alter society and resource efficiency. This brings up one minor and final issue.

The US having lots of wealth, but not a lot of people, has a massive infrastructure all across the nation, often just as draining on resources per square mile in uninhabited deserts as it is in dense urban neighborhoods, considering roads, phones, government employees, services, etc. The US does this to link the nation. It could add a massive amount of people to the interspace without needing nearly as much of an expansion of resources since main thoroughfares are already established. And I know your chart did not account for this at all, once again rendering it highly inaccurate. Since the chart is about resource consumption, and the US wastes resources in open spaces between population bodies, if you were to cram everyone together, the US’s comparative waste would massively decrease as its waste is circumstantial precisely due to population density conditions, this one variable alteration would instantly make the US (and UAE and elsewhere) far more efficient, shaving off some of those extra Earths supposedly needed.

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