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The effects of World Population Increase

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Introduction

The effects of the world population growth well into the 21st century will have both local and global effects on the natural environment and on human populations themselves. Discuss this statement. The world's population is growing by nearly 80 million people per year. While population growth rates have slowed since their peak in the 1960s, the numbers being added to the population each year continue to be huge, in part because of the growth in the numbers of people of reproductive age. At current rates of birth and death, the world's population is on a trajectory to double in 49 years. The median projection of population size by the U.N. Population Division envisions that population growth rates will decline over the coming several decades. But even if that median projection is achieved, the number of people expected to be added to the world's population in the next 50 years will be almost as large as the number added in the last 50 years. However some scientists such as Julian Simon believe this won't be a problem. His 1981 book "The Ultimate Resource" is a criticism of the conventional wisdom on population growth, raw material scarcity and resource consumption. ...read more.

Middle

Per capita calorie intake is 20 percent below that of 1960. Every third person in Africa is chronically malnourished. The doubling time of Africa's population is 28 years. Average desired family size in sub-Saharan Africa is five children per couple. Just as population growth contributes to poverty, population stabilization has often contributed to rapid improvements in per capita economic conditions and overall quality of life. All of the countries that have moved from developing status to developed status since World War II, according to U.N. criteria, had brought their fertility rates down close to replacement level around the times their economies began to take off. These include South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Barbados and The Bahamas. Productive agricultural systems have contributed to economic progress in many countries, both developed and less developed. The Green Revolution of the 1970s enabled some developing countries to become net exporters of food. Yet, global population growth during and since the Green Revolution is continuing to consume more and more of the expanding food base, leading to a decline in per capita availability of cereal grains on a global basis over the last 15 years. ...read more.

Conclusion

In the past, abrupt climate temperature changes have occurred. If they occur in the future, agricultural systems may be unable to adapt fast enough, causing massive decrease in food production, which in turn will swell the number of environmental refugees. Environmental refugees may simply be displaced within a country, or they may by international migration move between nations or continents. Such disruptive movements can impede attempts to achieve sustainable development. Some believe population growth can contribute to political instability and conflict. And the great affluence gap between the rich and poor countries has implications for migration: it fuels the desire to emigrate from poor countries, a desire which is likely to be increased as massive population growth continues in these countries. Such migration increases the potential for demographically fuelled international conflict. And declining natural resources will probably increase 'resource wars'. This in my opinion will be the toughest consequence from world population growth that our societies will have to adapt to. This was also expressed famously in 1798 by Thomas Malthus, who's "Essay on the Principle of Population as it Affects the Future Improvement of Society" warned that food production, which relied on finite factors of production could not keep up with exponential human reproduction. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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