I attended a presentation this evening by someone from Open Source Ecology. It was their assertion that 1 acre of land was enough for one person to live comfortably and sustainably. Since the US has 307 million people, that would require 307 million acres of suitable land. According to this report by a professor at Cornell, there are 2.3 billion acres of land in the US, of which 20% is suitable for growing crops. That means there is 460 million acres of land suitable for crops, which is more than the 307 million acres needed for 307 million people.
So, the anser is, if all Americans were to choose to live sustainably, it could be done with our current population. But the big “if” is if we all choose to live in a sustainable fashion.
Not yet, however it is getting closer to the point where living a sustainable lifestyle will not be possible. Our population density is still nothing compared to India or Bangladesh.
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