Effects of Overpopulation | List of Problems & Impact on Environment

Human population growth is a concern for the whole world as it has a toll on the environment.

The countries suffering from heavy population explosion consider it a threat to their economy and well-being.

However, interestingly, a few European countries are also worried about the decline in their population. This is due to worry that there will not be enough workforce to support their economy.

So, either too much of it or too little of it is detrimental to the country and its well-being.

However, in the recent decade, there has been heavy growth in population due to various factors.

This leads to many problems for the economy, food supply, housing, etc. Besides, the environment and society are also negatively affected.

Problems of overpopulation

1. Health issues

  • Overpopulation, i.e., high population density countries, is prone to many health issues.
  • Due to an increase in proximity between people in places of residence, the chances of spreading infections are pretty higher.
  • This is especially problematic in cases of epidemics like viral and bacterial infections.
  • Owing to more population, the number of healthcare centers and workers is insufficient to provide health services.
  • There is a decrease in the quality of health services and an increase in the medical bills in the country.

2. Dirty and unhygienic surroundings

Effects of Overpopulation
  • Humans, on average, are responsible for a certain amount of litter and dirt.
  • If a locality is highly populated, it catches more dirt and also at a faster rate.
  • This dirt and waste can again contribute to health issues activity, and human waste accumulates faster.
  • This applies even to the public transport system and places like parks, hotels, halls, etc.
  • So a decrease in population will contribute to a cleaner and hygienic environment.

3. Unemployment

  • Employment is an option to work and earn. But the number of positions is always fixed and limited in any business.
  • So the more population, the more difficult it would be to accommodate everyone into jobs.
  • When there are no sufficient jobs and means of livelihood, the chances of criminal activities and theft tend to grow, causing disturbance to society.

4. Poverty

  • Poverty is mostly a state of inability to make financial movements between people.
  • But still, countries with a high population generally have more people in the line of poverty than those countries with less population.
  • This can be easily seen in the current trends where people from certain countries are the richest, yet; their countries have many poor people.
  • So it will be like the rich and poor stay side by side.

5. Lawlessness

  • Law and order situation is controlled by law monitoring personnel and also proper technical vigil.
  • When the population is so huge, it will be quite tough to manage the law and order situation; as always, the people to security personnel ratio has a wide gap.
  • Also, other factors due to overpopulation like unemployment and poverty will encourage citizens to neglect and violate the law.

6. Unequal education

  • Due to the huge population, it would be tough for any nation to provide better education resources to all the people who wish to study.
  • Since education is expensive, many like to perceive it at a minimal cost.
  • But due to the huge population competing for the seats, some have t0 miss the desired opportunities.
  • Often, a talented and intelligent candidate will be unable to perceive their education in high populous countries and try to move to other countries for better options.

7. Manipulation of democracy

  • People of one religion or ethnic background enhance their population drastically compared to another sect in the same country.
  • In doing so, they tend to vote en masse for certain political parties that encourage them. 
  • Thus population growth is a tool to exploit democracy by unethical means.
  • Also, the political parties go to appease such communities to get votes and retain power.
  • This sometimes goes against national interest.
  • This trend can be seen even in developed countries like Germany, France, the U.K, etc.

Effects of Overpopulation on the Environment

  • Human overpopulation Problems are not limited to society alone.
  • It can also destroy the environment around them.

8. Overuse of natural resources

  • The more the population, the more the requirement for natural resources like water, minerals, petroleum, etc.
  • Due to greater demand, there is more exploitation of groundwater, mines, and minerals. 
  • People move to towns and cities for more resources, leading to further urban expansion.

9. Pollution

  • Pollution is a contamination of natural resources in a way that is detrimental to human health.
  • There are different types of pollution, like air, water, land, etc.
  • More population generates excess waste and also high human activity like more travel, vehicles, the release of sewage water, etc.
  • These issues contribute to an enhancement in pollution.

10. Deforestation

  • At least 30% of the land area of a country covered with the forest is a good sign of a natural environment.
  • But in many countries other than Europe, you do not find this ratio because of excess deforestation.
  • To meet the demands of the large population, governments go for deforestation to provide housing, land for agriculture, airports, road, etc.
  • In doing so, more of the natural habitat for wild animals is destroyed, and they get extinct.

11. On animals

The excess population does not have any effect on animals as long as man is a vegetarian and does not occupy forests.

But when most of the population is dependent on animal food and habitats, animals suffer and tend to get extinguished.

Leave a comment

  1. thank you for the information given. It really helped me on my service learning project for Florida Virtual school. Thank you so much. it was really helpful.

  2. The real cause of global warming and climate change is not the pollution we make. The true problem is over population. In 1950 this planet had a population of 2.5 billion people, we now have 7.4 and by 2050 will have 9.9 billion people on this planet. It took us from the time we where considered human until 1950 to get to a population of 2.5 billion. So what has taken us thousands of years to reach a population of 2.5 billion, we are now adding that many people to our population every 33 YEARS. This makes us the worst and most damaging invasive species this planet has ever seen and we must do something about it. The damage the greenhouse effect has on this planet is like throwing a cup of gas on to a forest fire compared to the damage we do to this planet in other ways. But for now I would like to point out the true cause of global warming and climate change, and why this would still be happening to our planet with out the greenhouse effect. THE FACT IS that every time we move into a new environment and change that ecosystem to fit our needs we create climate change witch cause global warming. Example. Down town Phoenix can get 20 degrees hot than the natural surroundings. Asphalt, when its 77 degrees out asphalt will reach 125 degrees. 89 degrees asphalt 143 degrees in the sun. So our asphalt can reach 50 degrees hot than the natural ground it sits on. This goes for everything we make, if it gets hotter than the natural surroundings, it is causing global warming. Think about all the cars running, all that heat coming off those radiators at 160 to 190 degrees. Example, take a cigarette lighter not much heat, light a million lighters at the same time and you will get a heat wave. EVERYTHING we make that you can touch, if its hotter than the natural surroundings it is causing global warming. And then we have the fact that we are causing climate change just from what we are physically doing to our planet. Take the rain forest for example. That is a beautiful ecosystem. The rain forest makes its own rain. The vegetation pulls water out of the ground then the heat evaporates the moister out of the plants witch creates the clouds and then rain, that in turn waters the plant life. They say that 90 percent of the rain is created this way in the forest. It is a wonderful example of nature recycling a natural resource. But when we cut it down we change all that. We change the cooling effect that had on our planet and we take away all that water. And even if we don't build on it, it will still change the climate because what was cool and wet is now hot and dry and no more rain. If we do build on it then we make things even worse because we now have to take more water from the natural environment for our needs putting more stress on that ecosystem. So we have changed the climate and cause global warming with out any pollution. With that being said this is why we have droughts now. It has nothing to do with global warming. The fact is the warmer it gets the more water gets evaporated, if more water gets evaporated then we should see more rain. That's how the rain forest works, the plants pull the moister out of the ground, the warm dry air pulls the moister out of the plants witch creates the clouds and rain. When we cut it down, it stops raining because all that water is gone, there is not enough left to evaporate to make rain any more. So the real reason we are having droughts now and why it will only get worse has nothing to do with global warming, but has everything to do with over population. After all warmer should create more evaporation witch should create more rain not less. So the more land we build on means there is less natural ground to soak up the water, we push all that run off into other places making that ground dryer than nature intended leaving less moister to evaporate. Then to make it worse we are pulling even more water out of the ecosystem for our needs leaving even less to evaporate for rain. The problem is we are consuming our natural resources faster than nature can replace them and water is no different. the more we consume means the is less for nature to do what it needs to do to keep that ecosystem in balance. The said fact is we could save millions of gallons of water each year without slowing down our rate of consumption and in the process slow our droughts. It would be possible if they would open there eyes. ( NO JOKE ASK ME HOW ) We must get our population under control if we want to fix climate change and global warming. Fact is if we only had 2.5 billion with the technology we have today this planet would a beautiful place with lots of wildlife to enjoy and pass on to our children. But if you could take away all the the greenhouse pollution we make and still add 2,5 billion more to the population we have now, our planet would not be any better off. All the damage we do that creates climate change and global warming will still be happening. The greenhouse effect is only a small percentage of the over all destruction we do to this planet. As long as we keep consuming our resources faster than they can be replaced we will only make things worse. After all this happened to Easter island, there population grew to a point that they started consuming there resources faster than nature could keep up with and the end result was that they leveled that island just trying to survive. Remember the bio dome experiment, that dome was totally sealed off from the out side. They made it just big enough to support 4 people for a year, it was a successful experiment. But if you take that same dome and add 8 more people it would have failed. That's what we are doing to this planet right now. Controlling the population would be easy if we would do it world wild. The only far way is to allow one child per couple. then they get fixed, with two only making one our population will drop by 50 percent each generation. Something like this must be done if you want to give your children a better life and a healthier planet than you where given. Thank you for your time . Scott Weatherly

    • I agree with everything you said here, and I think it contributes to the aggression and depression we're seeing.

  3. Overpopulation is the root cause of all of mankind's current problems – the 10 listed as well as others so serious that they could be separately categorized, e.g. extinctions and loss of habitat, over-fishing and the decline of fish stocks, global warming. Most of the world's current population would like a better quality of life. Is that possible? What is the optimum number of human inhabitants worldwide that our natural resources can sustain in a hygienic, healthy, educated, and productive state? How do we achieve that? Is every human being endowed with the inalienable right to procreate without limitation? If that was ever the case, it can no longer be so. The survival of humanity depends upon reducing the number of inhabitants to that sustainable number. Balance.

    So how did much of Europe and the North American countries achieve negative population growth (absent immigration pressures)? China recognized the problem years ago and imposed strictures, but they haven't solved the problem fully because the solution brought other problems alluded to in the article (an aging population, not enough productive younger people to sustain them, etc.) which they haven't solved.

    I think education is the 1st step. For example, I think many modern Chinese couples have the education, understanding, and ability to control the size of their families voluntarily now. And that realization underlies the voluntary restraints that educated and conscientious couples have self-impose in Europe and North America.

    So, one starts with education, especially in overpopulated countries. Tubal ligation, its male equivalent, and other measures would likely have to be imposed for a time. Perhaps couples who do not want children could transfer their procreation "rights" to couples who want more children. Government should not encourage large families by tax breaks or monetary aid. A nuclear family should be the norm. Parental financial responsibility must be strictly enforced. Countries like the U.S., China, Canada, and others should condition foreign aid on the recipient country's establishment of demonstrably efficacious programs to reduce their birth rates to achieve a decrease in population. But birth control without abortion – just pills, condoms, self-restraint, and so forth – bolstered by Education. Education. No religious sect is excused. No ethnic group is exempt. No country can alleviate its population problem by exporting it to other countries where the birth rate is under control. It's a problem that must be addressed. And at the same time, study should be given to how to deal with the "problems" caused by a declining population.

    • Hi Jensen, great insights regarding overpopulation from your end. But, I have seen an educated couple having 6 or more children even though they know they cannot provide quality life to children.
      This problem will not be solved as long as humans do not consider themselves as one family along with nature.

  4. I feel this subject is taboo unfortunately We are already seeing the effects in California with climate change, forest fires. In the areas there are jobs the rents and home prices are outrageous. Covid is a direct effect

    • Lisa, agree with you, the immediate solution for to control the climate change is to adopt the use of electrical vehicles by people of all the countries at the earliest. Covid is a blessing in disguise which showed that restriction of people's movement helps rejuvenate the environment.

  5. The article was amazing but I thought it would be better with some more specific information given and write the paragraphs longer. This article helped me a lot with my essay HW.

  6. Hello. This was a really good website for me to use in my attached works. The only thing i would like you to do better is that in some of the titles, such as pollution, you could give more information. But over all, it was really fantastic! :}


Leave a Comment