Issue: External pressures on human settlements - Population growth and distribution
This is an issue under the Human settlements theme of the Data Reporting System.
Human settlements are dynamic entities which are influenced by factors that are external to individual settlements. The flow of population, both permanent and temporary, into and out of settlements is the major pressure on human settlements.
Population size, both absolute numbers and rates of growth/decline, affects the ability of the environment to regenerate and to cope with human intrusion. Population size has both positive and negative aspects. On the one hand the dispersal of population throughout the countryside is a threat to the environmental viability of the land while concentration of population in particular locations both limits the extent of environmental damage and makes mitigation programmes such as provision of infrastructure cost effective. However, the concentration of population in particular areas can be particularly damaging on the environment once critical pollution thresholds are exceeded.
- HS-05 Total population and distribution
Population growth and distribution are both directly measurable.
- HS-07 Migration patterns
Migration, both interstate and international, is one of the key components determining the size of populations in human settlements. This indicator provides information on international and interstate migration.
- HS-08 Populations projections
The projection on population size into the future is a surrogate indicator for the pressure of human settlements and on human settlements.
- LD-15 Area and proportion of land surface occupied by human settlements, structures and activities that support human settlement
The amount of urbanised area and changes in this area over time is an indicator of the demands of population growth and distribution.
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Links to data in the DRS
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