A number of major processes have greatly altered the relationships between population and Diversification of population environment (P-E) relationships. Rethinking the Link: A Critical Review of Population-Environment Programs .. focus on links between population and environ- ment undercuts many of the on issues of conservation, free of the distortions of. Malthusian , from http:// badz.info Bird, K., Hulme, D. Read chapter Improve Understanding of the Relationship Between Population and Consumption as a Means to Reducing the Environmental Impacts of.
According to the assessments of many environmental experts, the most critical need facing the world is the slowing of human population growth National Commission on the Environment ; NRC c. Continued global population growth of the current magnitude—1 billion more people every decade—has the potential not only to negate efforts to protect the environment, but also ultimately to overwhelm economic and social progress.
The reasons for giving the highest priority to reducing population growth are ethical, practical, and scientific. Many of the countries that are experiencing rapid economic growth and increasing consumption of goods aspire to a pattern of consumption like that of the United States and have government policies that encourage economic growth.
But as economic growth and thus consumption increase, so do the environmental impacts of a population as it works and lives. Page 82 Share Cite Suggested Citation: Second, no net loss of water or air quality. Third, stabilization of our food supply, to include quantity and quality. Fourth, stabilization of plant and animal biodiversity.
Population and environment: a global challenge - Curious
Fifth, no net loss of wetlands; watersheds; national forests, parks, wildlife preserves, and wilderness areas; or lake, stream, or ocean commercial and recreational fisheries stocks. Sixth, continued monitoring of global climate change, such as global warming, acid rain, and loss of the ozone layer. However, large-scale worldwide demographic and health surveys have demonstrated a large unmet need for family-planning in nearly every country of the world. These needs are for low-cost, accessible, and safe means of contraception.
In developing countries, we cannot and should not deter economic development; but by recognizing the unmet need for contraception, we can influence the rate of population growth by helping people to manage their own fertility. People in developing countries want both economic development and smaller families.
Many countries are already experiencing marked fertility declines; given additional resources and assistance, they can increase these declines. Combining rapid economic development and increased resource consumption with rapid population growth will result in a compounding of the effects of economic development, which might overwhelm the capacity of a country to address them. As countries become more affluent, they are better able to address some aspects of industrial activity, such as air and water pollution, more effectively.
If the resources of a country are needed to address the consequences of a rapidly growing population—such as depletion of potable water supplies, epidemics of infectious diseases related to increased population density, and increased need for fuel and nutrients—the environmental consequences of this growth cannot be adequately addressed. The stress placed on the environment is a function of population and consumption.
Therefore, the burden should not be placed entirely on developing countries.
Priorities for developed countries, such as the United States, What would be necessary to conclude that an environmental goal was achieved? Slow rate of population growth. Having so many people living so closely together without adequate infrastructure causes environmental damage too.
Population composition The composition of a population can also affect the surrounding environment.
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At present, the global population has both the largest proportion of young people under 24 and the largest percentage of elderly people in history. As young people are more likely to migrate, this leads to intensified urban environmental concerns, as listed above. Life expectancy has increased by approximately 20 years since While this is a triumph for mankind, and certainly a good thing for the individual, from the planet's point of view it is just another body that is continuing to consume resources and produce waste for around 40 per cent longer than in the past.
Ageing populations are another element to the multi-faceted implications of demographic population change, and pose challenges of their own. For example between andJapan's proportion of people over 65 grew from 7 per cent to more than 20 per cent of its population.
This has huge implications on the workforce, as well as government spending on pensions and health care. Increasing lifespans are great for individuals and families. But with more generations living simultaneously, it puts our resources under pressure. Population income is also an important consideration.
The uneven distribution of income results in pressure on the environment from both the lowest and highest income levels. They may also be forced to deplete scarce natural resources, such as forests or animal populations, to feed their families. On the other end of the spectrum, those with the highest incomes consume disproportionately large levels of resources through the cars they drive, the homes they live in and the lifestyle choices they make.
On a country-wide level, economic development and environmental damage are also linked. The least developed nations tend to have lower levels of industrial activity, resulting in lower levels of environmental damage.
Population and environment: a global challenge
The most developed countries have found ways of improving technology and energy efficiency to reduce their environmental impact while retaining high levels of production. It is the countries in between—those that are developing and experiencing intense resource consumption which may be driven by demand from developed countries —that are often the location of the most environmental damage. Population consumption While poverty and environmental degradation are closely interrelated, it is the unsustainable patterns of consumption and production, primarily in developed nations, that are of even greater concern.
For many, particularly in industrialised countries, the consumption of goods and resources is just a part of our lives and culture, promoted not only by advertisers but also by governments wanting to continually grow their economy.
Culturally, it is considered a normal part of life to shop, buy and consume, to continually strive to own a bigger home or a faster car, all frequently promoted as signs of success. It may be fine to participate in consumer culture and to value material possessions, but in excess it is harming both the planet and our emotional wellbeing.
More clothes, more gadgets, bigger cars, bigger houses—consuming goods and resources has big effects on our planet. The environmental impact of all this consumption is huge. The mass production of goods, many of them unnecessary for a comfortable life, is using large amounts of energy, creating excess pollution, and generating huge amounts of waste.
To complicate matters, environmental impacts of high levels of consumption are not confined to the local area or even country. This enables them to enjoy the products without having to deal with the immediate impacts of the factories or pollution that went in to creating them. On a global scale, not all humans are equally responsible for environmental harm. Consumption patterns and resource use are very high in some parts of the world, while in others—often in countries with far more people—they are low, and the basic needs of whole populations are not being met.
The reverse was also true—for example the population of North America grew only 4 per cent between andwhile its carbon emissions grew by 14 per cent. Individuals living in developed countries have, in general, a much bigger ecological footprint GLOSSARY ecological footprintThe impact of a person or community on the environment, expressed as the amount of land required to sustain their use of natural resources. The ecological footprint is a standardised measure of how much productive land and water is needed to produce the resources that are consumed, and to absorb the wastes produced by a person or group of people.
Today humanity uses the equivalent of 1. This means it now takes the Earth one year and six months to regenerate what we use in a year. Global Footprint Network When Australian consumption is viewed from a global perspective, we leave an exceptionally large 'ecological footprint'—one of the largest in the world.
While the average global footprint is 2. To put this in perspective, if the rest of world lived like we do in Australia, we would need the equivalent of 3. Similarly, an American has an ecological footprint almost 9 times larger than an Indian—so while the population of India far exceeds that of the United States, in terms of environmental damage, it is the American consumption of resources that is causing the higher level of damage to the planet.
What is the solution? How do we solve the delicate problem of population growth and environmental limitations?- Impact Of Population On Ecosystem And Measures - - Environmental Science
Joel Cohen, a mathematician and author characterised potential solutions in the following way: Advances in food production technologies such as agriculture, water purification and genetic engineering may help to feed the masses, while moving away from fossil fuels to renewable power sources such as wind and solar will go some way to reducing climate change.
In the United Nations Environment Programme UNEP released a report titled ' Decoupling 2 ', which explored the possibilities and opportunities of technology and innovation to accelerate decoupling, and an analysis of how far technical innovation can go. This dynamic process has been identified as one of the key reasons that the economies of many Asian countries grew rapidly between and In recent years fertility has been falling in many developing countries and, as a result, annual world population growth has fallen to about 1.
The UN estimated recently that population is growing by about 78 million per year, down from about 90 million estimated early in the s. World population surpassed 6 billion in and is projected to rise to over 8 billion by In many countries, births far outnumber deaths, creating overpopulation.
Globally, fertility has fallen by half since the s, to about three children per woman. In these countries the population continues to increase rapidly. Another million people live in 44 countries where the average woman has five children or more. Almost all population growth is in the developing world.
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The shares of other regions are projected to remain about the same as today. As population and demand for natural resources continue to grow, environmental limits will become increasingly apparent. Family planning is effective in stabilizing growth. Family planning programs play a key role. When family planning information and services are widely available and accessible, couples are better able to achieve their fertility desires.
Practicing sustainable development requires a combination of wise public investment, effective natural resource management, cleaner agricultural and industrial technologies, less pollution, and slower population growth. Just when it stabilizes and thus the level at which it stabilizes will have a powerful effect on living standards and the global environment.
As population size continues to reach levels never before experienced, and per capita consumption rises, the environment hangs in the balance.