Population Growth and Decay in Schenectady, NY

According to the World Population Review, Schenectady, New York’s population as of 2017 is estimated to be 65,625 people. In comparison, Schenectady is the 9th largest city in New York, based off of the 2017 US Census Bureau. The review also revealed that the city had a population density of 6080.95 people/mi^2.

Based on information obtained from the American Community Survey, there was an average 2.67 people per household and the median income for households is $41,243. Lastly, 16.2% of families and 21.1% of individuals living in Schenectady are below the federal poverty line, where 38.3% of those under 18 are in poverty, and 10.2% of those 65 years or older.

So the question is how the population has fluctuated over the years. As you can see in the chart below, Schenectady suffered an enormous population decline with a decay rate of -11.01%  (roughly 10,000 people). In the years after, the population suffered a slow decrease that may have been caused by the economic decline the city suffered through. Below is a table and chart displaying the growth/decay of our city’s population. 

Population Growth and Deforestation in Guatemala

The article that I chose to use looked at population growth and deforestation in Petén Guatemala. The population in 1960 was about 21,000 people and has risen to 600,000 today, which is over a 10% growth each year. This drastic rise in population forced the new citizens to find new land to survive. In Petén, the process of deforestation was designed to meet the new growing populations needs, but this process of removing trees will have a lasting effect on the growing population. This process of relocating people also made it extremely difficult to provide consumer goods, infrastructure, and health services. Without these necessities, families were being hurt due to the massive influx of new people.

Ultimately, the country will run out of room to house these people and will certainly create a rise in deaths. Countries should focus more on feeding their people while working within the natural environment rather than destroying the environment. Soon there will not be any naturally occurring forests and humans will be to blame, hopefully we never get to that point because it may be too late.

Human Population Growth Rate

World Population 1950-2100

During my research for this post, I found a graph on the world population and chose to implement the skills we’ve learned in class for this section. I decided to use the graph as my own new data to work off of. After gathering data from this graph, I found that in the 64 years between 1950 and 2014, the world’s population had increased by 4.76 billion people.

This computed out to be a 187.4% increase during the 64 year period (4.76 billion people [total change] / 2.54 billion people [initial] = 1.874). With this information, I went on to find the growth factor and rate of change.

2.54 billion people + 2.54 billion people x 1.874 = 2.54 billion people (1+1.874) = 2.54 billion people (2.287) = 7.3 billion people

After computing this solution, we can see that the growth factor was 2.287. To find the rate of change, I divided the total change (4.76 billion people) with the total amount of time (64 years), to find an increase of 74 million people per year.

Lastly, I have estimated that the growth of the world’s population between the years 1950 and 2014 was that of exponential growth, rather than linear. I found that the world’s population between 1950 and 2014 increased exponentially at around 1% per year.

 To find this, I made a table that looked something like this:

1950        1958        1966        1974

2.54         2.92         3.41            4        billion


15%       16.78%      17.3%

380           490          590            million


Linear Global Population Growth

The article I looked at claims that despite popular opinion, the global population is not growing exponentially, but rather is growing in a straight line. Exponential growth is described as the growth rate of the population, as a fraction of the population’s size, and is constant. Therefore, if a population has a growth rate of 2%, and it remains 2% as the population gets bigger, it’s growing exponentially. Despite the starting points of two quantities, the one quantity that grows exponentially will become larger than one growing linearly. For the United States, the population growth over the past half century has been very close to a straight line, the R2 is 0.9956.

Essentially, it seems as if people confuse the words exponentially and increasingly when talking about population growth. The graph shown demonstrates linear growth, and how exponential growth occurs only when the percentage growth rate remains constant as the population gets bigger.