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"China is bigger than the continental US. I think the persistent myth about the US's size being some unique problem doesn't explain much."

Sure, China is huge. But the vast majority of it's population is concentrated on or near the east coast. Most of China's western interior is sparsely populated, even compared to the US.

Even including the interior, the overall population density of China (137/km2) is much higher than that of the USA (35/km2).

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