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It is a fact that “life would be easier if we didn’t have the kind of population growth rates that we have at the moment” (as cited in Taylor, 2013). According to information from the World Bank, everyday there are 200,000 more people born in the world, and that within the…
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Download file to see previous pages According to the pilot issue of Horizon: Future Issues for Development, in an article entitled “Population Growth, Environment and Food Security: What Does the Future Hold?,” human population growth is “the most significant cause” of many of the problems that the world faces like climate change, poverty and scarcity of food resources. By around 2050, the growth of the world’s population will be by 2.7 billion thus resulting in an estimated total of 9 billion people by that time (Collodi & McCormack, 2009). This significant increase in the human population will definitely outrun the supply of natural resources and will definitely force man to exploit the natural environment for the sake of survival.
In the table below from the United Nations Population Fund, one can see that the projected population of the world by 2050 is either 7 billion still, or 10.5 billion as the upper limit, or ideally at 9 billion.
One of the problems caused by overpopulation that will most likely affect the world on a global scale is environmental degradation. The overwhelming growth in population is expected to lead to unsustainable demands on the environment as well as natural resources. There is also a consequent production of hazardous waste and an intensified level of urbanization, both of which are expected to contribute to the degradation of the environment. There is also climate change due to the increase in the amount of greenhouse gas emissions by around 52% by 2050. Aside from this, water is expected to be scarce, and that 90% of freshwater supply will be gone even by 2030. Moreover, there is also an expected doubling of the demands for energy all over the world even 20 years from now. There is also a considerable loss of biodiversity, destruction of many ecosystems, and renewable environmental resources because of excessive draining of wetlands, clearing of forests and expansion of infrastructure (Collodi & McCormack, 2009).
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