How Are Earth's Spheres Interacting?
ES0103  Human Population

Humans are just one element of the biosphere, but we affect the Earth system in unique ways. Over 6 billion human beings live on our planet and each one affects the system at some level. Your own daily interactions with the other spheres may seem small, but when they are multipled by 6 billion, the effects can become noticeable. Some human activities, like the burning of fossil fuels, appear to be affecting the Earth system on a global scale.

This three-dimensional graphic uses a color code to show human population density over most of the globe. Think about how human activities affect the Earth system in different parts of the world.

  !   After the file loads, click the arrow buttons to turn the globe so you can view population patterns around the world.

6. Describe some human activities that are contributing to global-scale interactions among Earth's spheres.

Paul Morin/USGS Global Population Distribution Database

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