Over-population is not just a problem of poor countries

Think of what it takes to sustain human civilisation at the standards of living we believe that everyone is entitled to. Have we stopped to think what it would mean for a billion Chinese people, say, to have access to a standard of living equivalent to that enjoyed by Western Europe and North America today?

If every Chinese household owned at least one car, think of what that will entail, how much roads, parking lots, garages, and the factories to make these cars will need to be built? Worse, how much fuel will all these cars burn?

There’s more.

Food

Vast tracts of land, immense quantities of petroleum-based synthetic fertiliser, and gas-guzzling farm machinery are required to cultivate the growing demand for energy-rich crops in industrial farms.

Housing

Sprawl brought about by the space needed to build homes — and bigger ones, as affluence elevates personal standards — and the roads needed to connect them to commerce is a direct consequence of affluence and population increase.

Many animal and plant species lose their natural habitats to the relentless encroachment of human dwellings on nature.

Waste

Huge volumes of water are used to transport solid and liquid waste from human dwellings and workplaces to their processing sites.

Systems to process and “treat” human waste are imperfect and are often overwhelmed by the sheer amount of it generated by human consumption and the throwaway culture brought about by increasing affluence. The environment usually exhibits the progressive effects of this abuse in subtle steps but tends to also whip up perfect storms that wreak catastrophic havoc in sudden violent bursts.

Consider then…

If we think that the solution to the problem of a large population is simply growing the economy, think again.

There are limits to growth. A world economy whose vitality is fueled by energy-dense substances of finite supply, the combustion of which irreversibly warms the planet cannot grow forever. Something’s gotta give. And it ain’t gonna be Mother Nature. Human civilisation is less than 10,000 years old, and the species Homo Sapiens has roamed the planet for less than a million years. Dinosaurs ruled the Earth for tens of millions of years. Yet they simply disappeared.

What makes us so sure that humanity will persist in time scales beyond the next hundred odd years?

print

Post Author: benign0

benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.

Leave a Reply

19 Comments on "Over-population is not just a problem of poor countries"

Notify of
avatar
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Hyden Toro
Guest

Hey…Dude…the Dinosaurs had large bodies, but had small brains…We as Human Species have large brains….We are even learning to use of our multi-sensory perceptions…that is…perceptions beyond our usual five senses.
Human Species will prevail…we have sufferings…but we will endure and survive. We will advance in our civilization; as we gain more knowledge about our own selves and the universe…Religions and False Concepts of Beliefs are our present impediments in our advancement…

Joe America
Guest
The Catholic Church persistently denies any responsibility for the crying, empty mouths that represent the poverty that wracks the Philippines. “It’s the economy,” they argue. Its leaders see absolutely no connection between the astounding Philippine birth rate and poverty. They can’t look out at the families at baptisms and see the large families packed into a pew . . . six kids, seven, eight, nine, ten . . . and understand how their preaching has destroyed any notion of moderation and humility. How does the economy ever catch up to provide jobs to the over-birthing masses? Why do so many… Read more »
GabbyD
Guest

“The Catholic Church sees no connection between its distant arrogance and all the deadbeat dads who scurry off when faced with a real live child to care for.”

point of clarification: what is the connection between the church’s position and the deadbeat dads?

GabbyD
Guest

its a riddle!? haha… why does anyone ask questions B0, one is curious! (or confused)

GabbyD
Guest

flavor? plain vanilla!

GabbyD
Guest

plain vanilla! like… plain. basic. simple.

havent you heard that expression? plain vanilla? whats the corresponding australian expression?

GabbyD
Guest

yes!

Joe America
Guest

GabbyD, by “distant arrogance” I mean the Church has a tendency to preach but not listen to the cries of the children who are not properly tended to. Why is the Church not as incensed about people abandoning their children as they are about condoms? I detest deadbeat dads. Do you think I am wrong to feel that way? Or is it more important that I connect abstract dots for you?

GabbyD
Guest
thanks joe. see, B0? wasnt hard, was it? btw, speaking of connecting the dots, you should tell B0 what “plain vanilla” means. explain it to him real well. really slowly. actually, my question was about the connection between the church’s “distant arrogance” and dead beat dads. i dislike distant arrogance and dead beat dads as much as the next person. but i wonder what the connection is between them? i actually think the focus should not only be on the women, but on the responsibilities of the men. the church should look at men also. but i dont know/think that… Read more »
Joe America
Guest

GabbyD, and thank you for the thoughtful comment. I agree that the Church strives for responsible parenthood and does not like jerk-dads any better than you or I. But I think the lack of societally endorsed methods of preventing pregnancy contributes to the lack of choices available to both men and women, and the production of a great many unwanted, unfed, unschooled kids. It is just easier to be a jerk, I suppose, when there is no education available and no tools at one’s disposal.

asdf
Guest

That’s Malthusian theory for ya. Pero ang daming kritiko ng ganitong teorya. Well, na kay Sir Malthus ang huling halakhak.

ka_fredo
Guest

It will rain soylent green from heaven!

wpDiscuz