Too Many People!


Traffic around Tampa Premium Outlets in Wesley Chapel.

What used to be a beautiful field with tall grasses and haybales dispersed among the meadows is now a 5-story apartment complex. What used to be a 10-minute drive now takes 45 minutes.  Peaceful Publix trips now feel like fighting a war to get to the salad dressing. It all comes back to one thing. Too many people. 

 Florida is experiencing a major population increase and everyone is feeling the effects.  Focus on Florida: Population, Resources, and Quality of Life says, “Florida voters found that more than 80 percent considered the state’s burgeoning population a problem and 40 percent said that Florida has become a less comfortable place to live over the past five years.”  

Because Florida has gained so many people, daily activities have become so difficult. That includes traffic, cramped public places, and loss of the original environment.  

 Traffic can be one of the most frustrating things. Nobody wants to be in a compact car longer than they have to be. Well, that’s just too bad because now with everyone moving to Florida, a short and easy drive to the supermarket just turned into an hour ordeal.

Senior, Cole Lipinski says, “Driving to places in Wesley Chapel has become such a hassle.” Getting from one place to another shouldn’t be this hard.

The Capitolist states, “Miami ranking 9th worldwide for cities with the worst traffic in the 2022 INRIX Global Traffic Scorecard, a notable jump from its 32nd position in 2021.” Major increases like this has caused extreme differences in drivers’ attitudes. Road rage has shown a significant increase. It’s not a surprise considering citizens could easily hop in their cars and drive without congestion two years ago.

Running errands already feels like a burden as is. However, throwing in mass amounts of people just makes it all the worse.

Freshman, Jonathan Quinones says, “Even going to Publix is bad just because there’s so many people getting in your way.”

The number of people that are at Publix at any time or day of the week is astounding. The aisles are extremely packed. There are carts everywhere. Checkout lines take forever to get through. Even grocery shopping has gotten to be even more of an unpleasing experience. 

 With just the amount of apartment complexes, neighborhoods, and business spaces that have appeared in the past couple years is insane. Because of that increase, environments and animal habitats are being destroyed.

Urbanization has cost the lives of so many animals and it isn’t doing our Earth any better as well. PNAS states, “We find that urban land expansion is a contributing driver of habitat loss (≥5% of total loss) for around one-third (26 to 39%) of the species assessed.”

As a result of so many people are moving to Florida, we need housing and more available services. That calls for deforestation, urbanization, and unsustainable construction methods. Even the clearing out of land for something such as an apartment complex kills so many habitats that force animals to leave and go somewhere else. The animal’s arrival at another place can cause so many disruptions to the food chain, survival rates, and human impact.  

These issues aren’t just in Florida either. The worldwide population hit 8 billion people in November of 2022 and continues to rapidly increase.

The Miami Herald says, “As the world population continues to swell, so does everything we complain about. Human beings who live in already overcrowded areas of the world will inexorably try to migrate to other places that have not yet reached that point.” What happens when the places that “haven’t filled up yet” fill up? Where do people go? Will we reach our carrying capacity?  

 Thomas Robert Malthus, an English economist from the 1700’s created a theory about Earth’s population. He claimed that population growth is potentially exponential. This means the rates are going to continue to rise as time passes. He also claimed that eventually, humans will run out of the resources we need to survive because the population is growing faster than our resources can keep up with. As time goes on, the world continues to prove the Malthusian theory correct. We are nearing our world’s carrying capacity, and fast. 

 In closing, Florida’s overpopulation issue has caused so much disruption, danger, and destruction across the whole state. The number of people upset with this is piling up fast. Talking to any Florida citizen about the matter is enraging. We all feel the same. We are all concerned. We need to do something about it.