Overpopulation is an unwanted situation where the number of existing people surpasses the carrying capacity of where they are in the world. Overpopulation is triggered by many factors. Mortality rate reduction, improved medical standards, and a reduction of valuable resources are just some of the conditions which lead to overpopulation. It is also possible for a thinly populated area to become thickly populated if it is not able to sustain life. Advances in technology with each year has affected the world in a myriad of ways. The capacity to save lives and generate better medical treatment for all is a most welcome fact for those living today, but this reality also exacerbates the burgeoning population numbers.
Consequently, increased lifespans equate to population growth. In the past half century alone, the population has spiked in unprecedented numbers. In the history of man, the birth and death rates have always been able to sustain an equilibrium wherein the population growth rate is able to maintain the status quo.
This is what these images so graphically show us. From Mexico City, Brazil, to India and China, each picture conveys the urgent message that we should somehow put the brakes on the global population explosion. It is a dangerous balance (or lack of it) where the world now sustains more people than ever before. We are also knee-deep in the culture of overconsumption and waste.
Overpopulation can be viewed, in a long-term viewpoint, as occurring when a population cannot be maintained without the quick exhaustion of non-renewable resources or without the deterioration of the ability of the environment to give sustenance to the population.
Advocates of population control mention issues like quality of life, carrying capacity and risk of starvation as being a basis to oppose high human population growth and for a population drop. These arguments make very valid points, especially when one views these graphic images of a world that is burdened by just too many people, their needs and the ensuing waste that follows.
I am a freelance photographer who is no stranger to smudged lenses, long hours in front of the computer, heavy camera bags (and the back aches that ensued) and missing lens caps. If you know what I’m talking about, you probably have as much love and passion for photography as I do.