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Jumaat, 4 November 2011


Indians gather to get water from a huge well in the village of Natwarghad in the western state of Gujarat in 2003. Although its population growth has slowed in the past quarter century, India still has the second-highest population, at 1.19 billion, with three births for every death.

The growing population of the world, now estimated to be over 7 billion, marks a global milestone and presents obvious challenges for the planet. There are extremely densely populated cities and sparsely populated countries. China is the most populous country with India following closely behind. This post brings together some disparate illustrations of our world as it grows, including scenes from Mong Kok district in Hong Kong, which has the highest population density in the world, with 130,000 per one square kilometer. In Mongolia, the world's least densely populated country, 2.7 million people are spread across an area three times the size of France. Then there's Out Skerries, a tiny outcropping of rocks off the east coast of Scotland where the population is just 65. And doing what he can to contribute to that 7 billion global milestone is Ziona, the head of a religious sect called "Chana." He has 39 wives, 94 children, and 33 grandchildren. The world is an interesting place.

A hot summer day in Suining, China, draws hundreds of residents to the swimming pool on July 4, 2010. China has the world's largest population, at 1.3 billion or one out of every five people on Earth.

Motorists pack a junction during rush hour in Taipei in 2009. Taiwan's capital is notorious for its traffic jams, even though many motorists choose motorcycles and scooters over cars. United Nations analysts warn that population growth increases pollution, deforestation, and climate change.

People cross a street in Mong Kok district in Hong Kong. The United Nations, which reported the world's population reached 7 billion on Oct. 31, says that while more people are living longer and healthier lives, gaps between rich and poor are widening and more people than ever are vulnerable to food insecurity and water shortages.

An elderly woman pushes a cart with paper for recycling on a street in Mong Kok district in Hong Kong, An increasing population is lessening the Earth's resources, the United Nations says.

Javzanpagma, 71, talks on the phone as her husband, Javzansuren, fixes a lantern in Shivert, northeast of Ulan Bator, last month. In addition to being the world's least densely populated country, Mongolia is known for its rich resources of copper, gold, and coal.

The facade of an apartment building in Shanghai, one of China's fastest-growing urban areas. The city has about 23 million people, or the equivalent of the eight biggest cities in the United States combined.

Javzansuren, 72, herds his sheep in Shivert, northeast of Ulan Bator. Herding remains an important part of the Mongolian economy.

A combination picture shows 28 of the wives of Ziona, the head of a religious sect called "Chana," which allows polygamy and was founded by Ziona's father in 1942. Ziona has 39 wives, 94 children and 33 grandchildren. He lives in his 4 story 100-room house with 181 members of his family.

Ziona's 4 story house in Baktawng village where he lives with 181 members of his family, Oct. 6, 2011.

Family members of Ziona pose for group photograph outside their residence, October 7, 2011.

Yurts, such as this one in Shivert, are traditional homes that dot the Mongolian countryside. As the world's least densely populated country, Mongolia's economy is built on agriculture and herding. Recently, foreign investors have expressed interest in the country's rich mineral deposits.

Jugderdem, 2, stands at the door of a traditional Mongolian yurt in Shivert, about 140 miles northeast of Ulan Bator.

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