You may have heard that the majority of the world’s population actually lives within a relatively small circle that covers China, India, Japan, and other parts of Southeast Asia.

That’s a pretty extreme example of population density – but here’s one that is even more impressive.

It’s quite simple actually: it compares parts of the most expansive regions (Canada, Russia, non-coastal USA, Greenland, Australia, and others) with a tiny chunk of land that holds close to 400 million people.

An Extreme Comparison of Population Density

The following image comes to us from Metrocosm, the website of data visualization expert Max Galka.

Bangladesh and three provinces in India, which are highlighted in red, take up just 160,000 sq. mi (415,000 sq. km) – that’s smaller than California. Together they hold more population than all of the blue territories on the map.

Population Density

That’s right, the blue area contains the entirety of many significant countries, such as Canada, Australia, Norway, Sweden, and Saudi Arabia. The blue even includes parts of China, the United States, and most of Russia.

Getting More Extreme

Here’s the kicker – the disparity is only getting more intense. Take a look at the following map of the fastest growing cities, showing the rate of new citizens per hour:

Population Density

Dhaka, the largest city in Bangladesh, is one of the fastest growing cities in the world with a growth rate of 74 people per hour. Kolkata (India) is also up there, adding 32 citizens every hour.

Meanwhile, the cities within the blue area of the original map do not have the same kind of growth happening at all.

For the Numbers Geeks

Here are the original calculations, from Metrocosm, for the blue and red areas of the original map in case you are interested. It’s worth noting that the data was retrieved in 2015, so it is slightly out of date.

The “Blue” Regions

Show

entries

Search:

Jurisdiction Region Population
Canada All 35,010,000
Saudi Arabia All 28,123,000
Australia All 22,280,000
Russia Siberian Federal District 19,254,300
Niger All 18,124,000
Kazakhstan All 16,137,000
Mali All 14,478,000
Zambia All 14,440,000
Russia Northwestern Federal District 13,583,800
Chad All 12,620,000

Showing 1 to 10 of 100 entries

PreviousNext

The “Red” Regions

Show

entries

Search:

Jurisdiction Region Population
Bangladesh All 172,019,000
India Bihar 99,000,000
India West Bengal 90,320,000
India Jharkhand 32,000,000

 

Article by Jeff Desjardins, Visual Capitalist