Throughout history, the world’s population has expanded in an extremely exponential fashion-- taking over three million years to achieve a one billion person benchmark, it then only took 130, 30, 15, 12, and 11 years to reach subsequent billions, respectively. (Southwick, 159) Such a massive and still increasing population, combined with the environmentally detrimental repercussions of industrialization (as a result of the need to sustain such a large population), namely pollution from fossil fuels, has begun to take a serious toll on our planet’s ecosystem. Moreover, “some scientists have calculated that an optimal human population on earth in terms of reasonable living standards is no more than 2 billion people.” (Southwick, 161) Already, we are well over this “optimal” population level at more than 6 billion people with projections of growing by another 2 to 4 billion in this century. Still, with the advent of modern technologies, primarily in the areas of medicine and agriculture, humans “have effectively increased the size of the globe over the last two centuries, in terms of the maximum population which it will support.” (Dolan, 58) Nonetheless, in spite of such stark improvements in technological efficiency and capability, the fact remains that one in five people worldwide lives malnourished and without adequate housing. Equally important, and especially pertaining to the topic at hand, is the notion that such overpopulation, in conjunction with industrialization on a global scale, has led to increased emissions of harmful pollutants, some of which can cause ozone depletion and global warming. Global warming, which will be examined shortly, is the phen...
... middle of paper ...
...nmental salvation and continuity. This transition, led by developed nations, must include a commitment to the efficient research, development, and production of alternate fuel sources—those that are renewable, clean, and cost efficient (ie, hydrogen fuel). Otherwise, the uncertain long run implications of our current excessive consumption patterns may bring about the end of existence, as we know it.
Dolan, Edwin G., "TANSTAAFL: The Economic Strategy for Environmental Crisis" 1974, pp. 55-72.
Ponting, Clive. Chapter 13, "The Second Great Transition," St. Martins Press, NYC, 1991, pp. 288
Southwick, Charles H., "Global Ecology in Human Perspective" Oxford Univ. Press, 1996, pp. 159-182.
Stanitski, C. et al (eds.), Chemistry in Context, Applying Chemistry to Society, Mcgraw-Hill, 2003 Internet 1 (http://cop5.unfccc.int/convkp/begconkp.html)
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Overpopulation, Industrialization, and the Degradation of the Environment The overall growth of the human population in the last 2000 years has been a J-shaped growth. This can also be expressed as an exponential growth. A big question that can only be answered in time is how this population growth will slow down or stop. The planet can only handle so many humans before the effects of overpopulation send the environment into an unrecoverable tailspin of degradation. So the question is will the overall maximum human population be reached in a gradual manner with a trend resulting in an S-shaped population growth, or do we as humans need to experience some kind of catastrophic event that wi... [tags: Environment Environmental Pollution Preservation]
928 words (2.7 pages)
- Overpopulation It is the world's one crime its babes grow dull, Its poor are ox-like, limp and leaden-eyed. Not that they starve, but starve so dreamlessly, Not that they sow, but that they seldom reap, Not that they serve, but have no gods to serve, Not that they die but that they die like sheep. VACHEL LINDSAY No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main... Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind: And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.... [tags: Population Environment Environmental Papers]
3079 words (8.8 pages)
- In today’s society there are many economic problems, such as pollution, global warming, and overpopulation. These problems have taken a toll on the environment, and its resources. Although all of these issues have an impact on our society, overpopulation stands to have the greatest impact on our environment, due to the large masses of people and the limited resources. There are many solutions to this problem but the common factor is the human race. The human race has to put controls in place and take care of the environment, so the required resources do not become extinct.... [tags: Overpopulation, Environment]
932 words (2.7 pages)
- Jacques-Yves Cousteau once said, “Overconsumption and overpopulation underlie every environmental problem we face today” (“Population,” Internet). With the current statistics, Jacques could not be more accurate. Every second, 4.2 people are born and 1.8 people die, which would be a net gain of 2.4 people per second (“Population,” Internet). At this steady rate, the environmental health is spiraling downwards, and it is safe to assume humans are responsible for this. As the population increases, harmful effects on the land, water, and air also do.... [tags: environmental health, megacities, overpopulation]
2004 words (5.7 pages)
- Humans have greatly impacted the global environment. Throughout the course of history, human populations have rapidly increased. Especially in Africa, these numbers have reached extraordinary proportions. Out of all the continents in the world, Africa’s population is increasing the most. The type of growth here is exponential. “Overpopulation is a condition when an organisms numbers exceeds the carrying of its ecological niche.” The growth rate of a population is equal to the birth rate minus the death rate.... [tags: Overpopulation, Environment]
2021 words (5.8 pages)
- To accommodate the growth of economy and the population, the entire world is faced with urbanization and a series of problems caused by it. There is consensus behind the situation that sustainable development would be an effective way to deal with these problems. But this thesis is going to talk about the spirit of the problems and explain that the problems are unsolvable in the situation of the age of urbanization. Introduction Many urban problems derive from three big ones: Lack of energy, pollution and overpopulation.... [tags: energy, pollution, overpopulation]
792 words (2.3 pages)
- ... Ever since the start of the human race, we have traveled. Humans continuously searched the globe for food, water, and shelter, which are the 3 necessary things needed for survival. Over time, the human race has traveled all over the entire globe, and now we are running out of space for everybody. In the past few centuries, we have destroyed many of the Earth’s forests. We have taken over the forest and used them for our own personal living, destroying the habitats of all the species there before us.... [tags: World population, Overpopulation, Human]
1827 words (5.2 pages)
- The increasing world’s population is a global issue and becomes a source of anxiety for many scholars and decision makers around the globe. U.S. Census Bureau estimated that population growth will persist into the 21st century, growing from 6 billion in 1999 to 9 billion by 2044 (2010). In a longer term, it is also projected that human population may keep increasing up to 36.4 billion in 2300 (United Nations, 2003). Population upsurge is considered a centre piece for a range of problems world would encounter in the future.... [tags: Overpopulation, Environment]
899 words (2.6 pages)
- Impact of the Industrial Revolution on the Environment Human population growth on this planet has followed a long, slow J-curve shape leading up to a nearly exponential growth beginning around the time of the modern Industrial Revolution in the 1800s (Southwick, ch. 15). As the Industrial Revolution continues to spread to less-developed countries, their population growth is now skyrocketing as increased access to food and medical care raises the standards of living around the world, while many cultures have not yet responded with a lowered birth rate.... [tags: Exemplification Essays]
646 words (1.8 pages)
- Stories of current times could sound surreal to citizens of the year 2552. Tales of water coming out of the ground, fuel sources called fossil fuels, or vast areas covered in trees would all be stories around the virtual campfire. Lands once known as Africa have become uninhabitable to even the most resilient organisms. At the poles, it is so cold that the fuel lines in vehicles freeze in eleven seconds. The descendants of seven billion people currently inhabiting this world would be faced with hard times if we fail to take action.... [tags: Overpopulation, Environment]
913 words (2.6 pages)