HUMAN POPULATIONS AND ENVIRONMENT
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Important Terms for Human Population
POPULATION: It may be defined as a group of organisms of the same spices occupying a particular space.
Population Density: it is defined as the number of the individuals per unit area per unit volume of the environment.
Habitation Patterns and Factors Governing the Human Population Settlement
At the beginning of life on earth, people started living in forests near the river banks to have easy access to food, water, and shelter. There was no society and people were identified on the basis of their groups, the human settlement is developed collectively and their interaction.
As population increased, people started moving from one place to another, and so revaluation in the field of transportation started. As time passed the use of fire to cook the food, using animals as a means of transport and their milk as a food supplement, lead human towards the formation of the wider group and they started to leave together.
Different environmental factors governing human settlement are: Land, Food, Water, Energy resources, Forest resources, Shelter, Air
As population increased, people started taking over more and more land for human population settlements. They construct roadways, railways, public complexes, and industries. These activities caused environmental degradation due to the large amount of air, water and land pollution and deforestation. The present-day requirement is the availability of fertile land.
Ancient man was dependent on animals for food. They do hunting of animals for their food. As the population increased, demand for more land for agriculture also increased. Development of advanced technologies in the field of agriculture caused the use of fertilizers and pesticides for increasing production of the crop, which deteriorated the quality of environment and health of common beings.
As the population increased, due to the shortage of water and also due to pollution of surface water bodies (like rivers, lakes, and ponds) people started the use of groundwater in terms of open wells for drinking purposes.
Today the problem of water scarcity is due to unequal distribution of water resources, unplanned use of water resources, urbanization and industrialization, etc.
The earlier man was using fire for cooking food in forests. They started using animals as a means of transport. But, with an increase in population, the use and demand of conventional energy sources (oil, petrol, gas, diesel, etc.) have considerably increased leading to depletion of these sources.
The earlier man started living in the forest as the food was easily available, with an increase in human population demand for more land for human settlement and agriculture also increased. People cleared forest land for agriculture as well as for human settlement. This caused a problem of deforestation and serious effect on wildlife.
The earlier man started living in the forest, then he moves to caves. With the increase in population people started settling by constructing huts, kuchha houses, etc. thus forming small colonies. Gradually these colonies expanded to present villages, towns, and cities. By doing So, they separated themselves from the forest ecosystem and thus created on the imbalance in the ecology of nearby forest area.
Air is the basic requirement for men. Earlier days there was not a problem of fresh air. But today due to excessive air pollution the air quality has deteriorated. The people search to settle themselves in the pollution-free atmosphere.
Overpopulation (Human Population and Pollution)
Overpopulation refers to a condition when organism numbers exceed the carrying capacity of its habitat.
The maximum carrying capacity of the environment is the capacity to support human beings with the availability of food, water, air, and shelter as well as protecting human beings against the extremities of the environment.
Population pollution is the pollution caused due to overpopulation. Overpopulation generally refers to a population of human in a particular area of the state or notion. In practice, a particular area may be called having overpopulation when it is difficult to sustain with available resources of that area.
Reasons for Overpopulation
Increase in birth rate
The crude birth rate is the number of the child’s birth per 1000 people per year. If the birth rate is high, it implies that the number of people will be for human settlement and will, therefore, cause overpopulation.
Factors affecting birth rate are:
- The fertility rate of women
- Social beliefs
- Government Policies
- Recreation facility available
The Decrease in Death Role
The crude death rate is the number of deaths per 1000 Persons near. The decrease in death rate has resulted in overpopulation. The low death rate is due to the following reasons:
- advancement in the field of medical science
- increase in nutrient levels.
- increase in standards of diet
- improvement in the quality of drinking water, etc
Increase in immigration
People from towns and villages generally migrate to cities in search of jobs and better living standards results in overpopulation of cities.
The countries like the U.S.A., Canada, U.K. and Australia, where industrial development had brought a good environment for citizens to stay, earn and enjoy had resulted in immigration and ultimately overpopulation.
Better medical facility
The new inventions of medicines and awareness towards better health in the society have resulted in decreased crude death rate. Better medical facilities and healthcare services have controlled the spread of the epidemic and certain diseases and reduced mortality rote and raised the life expectancy.
Population growth is the change in Human Population over time and can be quantified as the change in the number of individuals in a population using per unit time for measurement.
The population growth can be expressed by population growth rate is expressed in the fractional rate at which the number of the individuals in a population increases.
Exponential growth and logistic growth of population are included.
Theories of Human Population
The Malthusian theory founded on two assumptions:
- Food is necessary for the existence of humankind.
- The passion between the sexes is necessary and will remain unchanged.
According to Malthus population tends to grow at a faster rate than the food supply population tend to grow at the geometrical manner whereas food supply can only increase arithmetically this according to him is the cause of poverty, disease, starvation, and crime.
Malthus concluded that power of population is indefinitely greater than the power of the earth to produce subsistence for man. A point will come when the population growth will outstrip food growth while called the point of crisis.
He also believed that checks will develop to keep the rate of population growth in line with the rate of growth of food supply.
He gave two types of the checks positive checks like famines diseases outbreak, war etc. And the preventive checks and preventive checks like control of birth rate. Limitation of the Malthusian theory:
He never seriously discusses the feasibility of the control of the population.
Also, He failed to consider the possibility that development in the agriculture technology might permit sufficient increase of the supply of the food.
He confused the instinctive desire for the sexual relationship with the desire to have the children increase the level of education. And affluence tends to introduce the distinction between sexual desire and decision to have children.