In the biological sciences, overpopulation is defined as a state in which the population size of a species has surpassed the carrying capacity of the environment. In this condition, natural resources like food and water will be consumed at a rate at which they cannot be replenished quickly enough. Such a state usually results in the morbidity and mortality of members of the species through famine and disease, such that their numbers are reduced to a population size more compatible with available resources. The application of overpopulation to humans began with the publication of Thomas Malthus's Essay on the Principle of Population at the beginning of the 19th century. Malthus proclaimed that because human populations increase geometrically and food production grows arithmetically, in the ...

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