Explain the concept of physiological density in human geography.

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Physiological density is defined as the number of people per unit area of arable land. Arable land is land that can be used to grow crops, so the physiological density is calculated by dividing the number of people per unit area by the amount of land in that area that...

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Physiological density is defined as the number of people per unit area of arable land. Arable land is land that can be used to grow crops, so the physiological density is calculated by dividing the number of people per unit area by the amount of land in that area that can be used for agricultural purposes.

By determining the physiological density, we can see the amount of food that is being produced in a given area for the people that are supported by that land. Countries with a higher physiological density are at risk of reaching its output limit sooner than countries with a lower physiological density. By calculating physiological density, we gain insights into the availability of resources in an area in relation to the amount of people living there.

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The concept of physiological density is one that attempts to quantify the extent to which a nation's agricultural resources are being exploited.  Physiological density is determined by dividing the nation's population by its units of arable land.  This shows us how many people are being supported by each unit of farm land and can tell us something about how intensively the country is being farmed.  A country with a high physiological density may (if it is farming efficiently) be closer to running out of resources than one with a lower density.

This measure of population density should not be confused with what we might call arithmetic density, which simply measures how many people there are for each unit of total land area (as opposed to the area of arable land) in a country.

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