Letter: Where in the world would all of us fit?

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The Independent Online
Sir: Trevor Pankhurst asks whether the Isle of Wight or Texas would be the more appropriate place to hold the world's population (letters, 24 December). On Christmas morning my wife and I, her parents and our two children found it comfortable to stand in an area of one square yard. At this density, one acre would hold 29,040 people and a square mile (640 acres) 18,585,600. I understand that the world's population is in the region of 5 billion, a number of people who could stand comfortably on an area of 269 square miles.

The Isle of Wight measures 147 square miles and it would therefore require a very uncomfortable degree of packing to accommodate the world's population. With a little squeezing together they could, however, stand on the Isle of Man (220 square miles).

Texas, at 267,000 square miles, could hold the world's population, at six to the square yard, approximately 1,068 times.

Yours faithfully,

ROBERT WALLS

Camberley, Surrey

25 December

(Photograph omitted)

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