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The Population Bomb - Essay Example

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The paper 'The Population Bomb' focuses on the world which was once a diverse ecosystem with an amazing pool of resources that could sustain itself and still afford man enough for himself and his activities. In those days, there was a balance in the ecosystem leading to harmony…
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The Population Bomb
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This paper shall highlight those contrasting debates and reach a conclusion on the same.
Going back in time, there have been reports that the population of the world has more than tripled over the last century. According to Sticklor (2011), our numbers were at one billion in 1900 but has been recorded to a whooping seven billion to date with an estimation of nine and a half billion by the mid this century. This is a relatively large figure to comprehend considering the short period involved in the case scenario. Some obvious changes are bound by the population experienced. The competition for resources has become the order for the day as everyone is trying to get his or her own share of their basic rights and living needs. The mangoes against all odds to ensure that he has food on his table and this includes cutting down nature’s valuable forests in an attempt to make a living. This move has led to severe deforestation in most regions of the world since there is usually no replacement for the fallen forest cover. Governments’ actions to mobilize its people on planting more trees have been futile since they may succeed at starting nurseries, but to get back to normal would require longer periods of time yet the effects continue to be felt. A cause and effect relationship is created as a loss of forest cover leads to a loss of water catchment areas, which in turn contributes to an imbalance in the weather patterns paving way for lack of rain and in extreme cases drought will be experienced.
Man’s activities are at play in the illustration above but deforestation is not the only destructive habit. Owing to his intelligence, the human mind has to lead to some technological advancement in the basic fields of agriculture to more sophisticate attempts at industrial activities. The growing population has demanded an increase in the amount of food produced thus farming has been on a large scale to compensate for the deficit in the national bread basket. Farming is now practiced artificially with the incorporation of manmade fertilizers and over utilization of farmland that has had their share of destruction on the environment leading to decreased yields. The result is that the economy of the country is affected as commercial activities heavily rely on agriculture directly and indirectly for their prosperity. Inhabitants of such areas are forced to migrate in search of greener pastures leading to other global problems
Migration of people has according to Ehrlich (1971), causing further strain on the world’s resources since the national treasures are now over exploited due to their shrinking numbers. For example, mining has become a cumbersome affair as the miners are made to drill even deeper in search of the precious resources such as oil and valuable metals that have had an increased use in most industries. The technology used involves the consumption and emission of dangerous components in the environment leading to an accumulation of greenhouse gases that in effect have caused global warming and severe climate changes which will continue to be felt in generations to come. No wonder people are worried that the world will become inhabitable in years to come with some professionals considering on inhabiting other planets for the sake of future survival.
On the other hand, some insights have been forward by one controversial economist, Simon. He argues that our lifestyle has improved and not declined in the face of growing population numbers (Simon, 1998). He indicates that life has become easier and better than was the case a few years ago. Medical care has improved dramatically leading to fewer deaths; modern gadgets that have made our life bearable are now possessed by most people and movement has been enhanced even in developing countries. He goes ahead to state that rise in world population should not be blamed for our present struggles but that other factors have been contributing. He blames on the political and economic scandals that have rendered people incapable of handling their own shortcomings (Simon, 1998). Government policies which are meant to invent ways of curbing the socio-economic problems do not provide for such advantages. Instead, local professionals are left to their own tasks due to lack of a support system hence they do not achieve the desired results in society.
Thomas Malthus was for the idea that unless certain measures are taken in the name of decreasing in the exploitation of natural resources and a cut in population, the world would always be faced with the global problems of starvation, poverty, pollution, and decreased mineral resources. Simon, on the contrary, believes that we should instead focus on maximizing the immensely knowledge of man and his capability to solve his own problems as been witnessed over the years. This will lead to the development of more efficient utilization and replenishment of our natural resources which will, in turn, continue to benefit us. Without the skilled and large manpower, there will be no progression in the earth’s prosperity as it is hoped. This is because there have been misleading reports that the natural resources are dwindling yet the current situation indicates that they are more available to most populations than has ever been experienced in the past. However, these same studies have not emphasized on the improved scenario of how the people concerned dealt with the problem.
In conclusion, it should be noted that there are different views in analyzing the strains brought about by the increased change in population. The disadvantages, however, are felt more than the advantages in the population boom occurring in today’s modern world. The changes in the environment and especially global warming are irreversible since we cannot determine the weather conditions but can only influence them. For this reason, arguments on advancing our pool of knowledge in order to solve the current global situation can be rendered futile since it is beyond our power to do so and even if we succeeded, who knows what outcome would be felt that could lead to more damage than good. Read More
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