The Instigator
Con (against)
0 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
4 Points


Do you like this debate?NoYes+3
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/26/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,867 times Debate No: 36014
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (1)




Overpopulation is now the leading environmental problem known to man; impacting the environment which is causing devastating changes affecting life on earth in multiple ways. The term overpopulation does not refer to the number of people, but to earth's capacity to sustain life indefinitely taking in consideration its available resources: land, food, water, and other necessities for life. There are currently over 7 billion people in the world today. It is projected that 7 billion will grow to 9 billion by 2050. That is 2 billion in less than 37 years. The human global monopoly is beginning to interfere with the earth's atmosphere and life on earth. There is no quick and easy solution to solving overpopulation and although these issues are overwhelming and seem irreversible the time to start implementing innovative ways to control population growth globally is now.


I accept this debate.

While I do think overpolution is a concerning issue, it's only one when we begin to overpopulate. I will be arguing that Overpopulation is not, as of right now, a serious threat.

I will let the Con provide her argument and sources first.
Debate Round No. 1


SummerLynn1977 forfeited this round.


Lets define Overpopulation.

over"pop"u"la"tion noun
: the condition of having a population so dense as to cause environmental deterioration, an impaired quality of life, or a population crash(1)
: Excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration.(2)
: to fill with an excessive number of people, straining available resources and facilities:(3)


Now the generally shared issue listed is Population Damage and Environmental Damage.

The world has seen overpopulation in terms of impaired quality of life many times, and the human race simply adapts and moves on. Are we too populated for our own quality of life? Lets do the math. New York City's population density is 27,550/sq mi.(4) I suppose you could say it's comfortable there. Very comfortable for some. The World's population is 7,101,513,000.(5)

7,101,513,000 / 27,550/sq mi. = 257,768 sq mi.
Texas size = 268,581 sq mi.(6)


With the whole worlds population fitting nicely in less a space than Texas, comfortably none-the-less, it's safe to say that overpopulation hasn't yet occurred in terms of quality of life.

Now lets discuss Environmental Deterioration.

Hmmm Lets think... Trees! Deforestation is a major concern, right? Wrong.

The world deforests what amounts to 4.5 billion trees a year (I averaged between 3-6 billion.)(7) According to NASA, there are 400 billion trees in the world.(8) This means that the forest population could last around 88.8 years. That doesn't sound very long, does it?


Think again. Actual deforestation estimates don't include the number of trees replanted. The US alone plants 1.5 billion trees a year from nurseries alone.(9) This alone increases the forest lifespan to 133.3 years. If the rest of the world planted 1/20th that amount per person, we'd be replanting enough trees to make the forest last 326.5 years. That's a little better.


How many trees does the world grow, though? Well it's hard to tell. With Europe and (yes, shockingly) China, the number is far from small. This number also does not include the trees regrown in corporate Replacement programs, or volunteer programs. According to the UNEP Billion Trees Program, all the trees grown under the UN program equaled 2 billion in 18 months after launch.(10) If it kept up like that, we would see the program produce 1.33 billion trees a year. Has it kept up with that number? No. It's increased. The UN now plants 1.7 billion trees a year (12 billion total.)(11)


Between the UNEP program, and the US Nurseries, we replant 3.2 billion trees. Total number of plants planted would include this amount + all the other Replacement programs. Most companies that deforest have a Replacement Program, obviously they aim to keep their product growing. It also does not account for the trees that grow naturally on their own.

How many trees do we think are grown each year, compared to the number of trees lost? Ask the US, whose forests are larger today than they were 100 years ago (when industry and war led the nation.)(12) The US's forest growth is 42% larger than it's forest harvesting.


But what about Global Warming?

Not an issue. The world as always gotten hotter for short periods. It's a natural process that helps burn up and refresh the world. I don't mean get rid of people or cities like in the movie 2012. I mean it helps to start Wild Fires and melt the ice caps a little. A very natural process.(13)


This time around, the warming process is hotter than ever before, not to be confused with being overly hot. Why is it hotter? Because of Humans? No. Humans mostly contribute to the greenhouse gases by adding in Carbon Dioxide. Humans only make up 5.53% of all the greenhouse gases.

Well, actually. One thing everyone leaves out is Water Vapor. Gases don't have to be filthy in appearance to be a greenhouse gas. Water Vapor is the largest greenhouse, making up 95% of all the gases in the sky. With this added, Humans only make up 0.28% of all Global Warming. (14)


So what is causing this global warming to be worse than prior global warming? A growing Earth in general. All populations are growing, not necessary because of people. Global Warming this time around still is not hot enough to do harm, and if it were, it still wouldn't be because of the Human Population.

But what about the Polar Ice Caps?

What about them? They aren't really melting. Global Warming fanatics love to post pictures of the Ice Caps melting, but never speak of the ice cap growth. All ice melts over time, and it's only natural the Ice Caps melt to refresh the water and even the ice itself. For every bit of ice that melt, more takes it's place. The Ice Caps melt in the summer and grow in the winter.

The Ice Caps have been growing, but for how long? All 33 years we've been studying them.(15) This mean they were growing when the Global Warning fanatics were just being born, and have been growing the whole time they've been shouting at us. Since we started viewing them, they've been growing, and have likely been growing long before. They have grown 26% since 2007.(16)



So while there is Global Warming, it's both natural and temporary, and is only slightly worse now than it was back then. Global Warming is, also, highly unaffected by Human activities, who only affect 0.28% of all greenhouse gases. The Ice Caps aren't getting smaller, and we aren't taking up nearly that much space.

With so little negative affects on the world, Humans have yet to overpopulate. The Resolution is that Overpopulation is a current issue, but it isn't.

When do humans start to overpopulate? When they can not prevent the negative effect we have. Tearing down 4.5 billion tree a year is a negative effect, but we can and are preventing it's effect with our own programs. If we get to a point where we can't undo our annual impact (which is very small right now) and the impact left over after all our attempts are (more than damaging) deadly to the Earth, than we are overpopulated.

As of right now, the Resolution does not hold up. Right now, Overpopulation is not a concern.
Debate Round No. 2


SummerLynn1977 forfeited this round.


A FF, I shall carry on with another set of arguments for fun!

Food Supply.

If everyone ate around average (2lb a day) than it would take 2,584,400,000 tons to feed them.

That's good, because the world produces up to 4,000,000,000 tons of food.(a)


We could feed 11,000,000,000 people. The UN doesn't think we'll reach that many by the end of TWO century from now (start of 2300). (b) This is good because you can feed that many people with just the land we are using for farms. Another good thing is that most city and town expansions do not intrude on the farm land we use. Most farmers in the world aren't using up-to-date technology either.

b) P.g. 27

The UN's High Estimate is merely an extreme assumption. They stick with the Medium Assumption.

It's important to remember that as population grows, so does farming technology and the number of farmers.

ANOTHER factor... Arable Land.
They believe 10.43% of all land is Arable.(c) Of all that land, they estimate only 37.5% of all Arable land is being used.(d) This means we could increase our population to 266.6% before needing a new way of farming (or better Technology, you have to remember that as time goes by, and number of people one acre can feed increases.) This is assuming we still throw away half our food. If we stopped throwing away so much food, we could increase our population to 514%. Of course some of that land is likely being used... But how much?


No more than 30%. You see, Urbanized areas (Cities, Towns, Villages) take up 3% of Earth's land...(e,f) If all of the Urban Areas was, by some odd chance, on Arable land, it would cover 28.76% of all Arable Land. Leaving 33.74% left open. This means you could still almost double the population (assuming technology doesn't increase and Urbanization growth doesn't take up more Arable land.) Of course it's highly unlikely urban areas take up that much Arable Land. In fact, the 10.43% of the land that's Arable might exclude urban land, but I'm not sure.


To put this into realization for you... Off of open Arable Land, we could hold a population from... (I'm posting the year the UN's High Estimate believe we will reach this number.)

2175 = 18,888,660,000 (if we wasted half of our food still.)
2300 = 36,538,000,000 (if we used all our food by then)

Again, the dates are based on UN High Estimate, and the population is assuming we are using the same technology. It also assumes the same portion of Farmers are using up-to-date technology. Under the UN's actual estimate, we won't reach that number until LONG after 2300, if ever.

By the way, some say it would take 10 earth's to sustain life if everyone were like Americans. I did the math... It'd take us not throwing away half our food, and increasing farming to 140%. Does that seem like a lot? To an extant... But that increase would leave Earth with 47.5% of it's Arable land left. That is far from needing 10 Earths... In fact, if each earth had the same amount of Arable land, it'd take 4.75% of that much land to feed everyone the same amount Americans eat.(g) We could still double+ our population.

Current Food Production = Around 5 bn tons.
Production need to eat like Americans = 7 bn tons.


Of course, not everyone eats like an American, and America's eating problem is fixable. Only when you can't fix the problems, have Human begun to overpopulate.

With this, I conclude my prior statement.
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by donald.keller 5 years ago
Someone hasn't read my argument ;D

Talk about data, but show none, huh?
Posted by Juan_Pablo 5 years ago
Both Pro and Con don't believe that overpopulation is a problem, despite all the ubiquitous, argument-shattering data!
Posted by donald.keller 5 years ago
I think me and Con can accept that the resolution is "Overpopulation is a currently a threat to the Earth."

This being because she refers to Overpopulation as 'now the leading environmental problem.'
Posted by SummerLynn1977 5 years ago
I am NOT for overpopulation.
Posted by SummerLynn1977 5 years ago
I am NOT for overpopulation.
Posted by SummerLynn1977 5 years ago
I am NOT for overpopulation.
Posted by Piccini 5 years ago
You are Pro overpopulation? I think you have confused yourself while building the debate.
Posted by Mikal 5 years ago
im kind of loss as to what the debate is about lol
Posted by owenmontoux 5 years ago
i dont know how anyone can argue that lol
Posted by SummerLynn1977 5 years ago
Test 123
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by gordonjames 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: FF against CON - good points to pro