An overview of population change.
The World POPClock Projection projects the earth’s population to grow to nine billion by 2050 (NOVA, 2011). There is currently a trend in the population which is increasing in number by 75 million people per year. This is a growth of 205,480 people per day and 8562 people per hour. This exponential growth will impact the ecosystem by consuming resources faster.
Because resources such as fossil fuels are limited, the rate of increase in human population will increase the consumption of these fuels. However, the loss to the environment is not as substantial as one might think. Humans consume tremendous amounts of resources but the real effect on the ecology will be the need to produce larger amounts of food and the loss of endangered animals in areas already being encroached upon by humans (Kasun, 2002).
The earth has abundant space to accommodate the population but the proximity of people to resources and the ability of people to maximize the resources becomes the greater issue. Because most of the population explosion is taking place in developing countries the ability to feed and balance resources is quickly fading. In areas like Africa and India resources are already stretched and this will be a critical problem in the next few decades. As the indigenous people in these areas continue to grow in population simple resources like fresh water and fuel will become scarcer. This problem will lead to desertification and death for many people (Brown, 2011). The current solutions to the issue of population lie in the ability of people to balance population through education and assessment.
Kasun, J. R. (2002). Overpopulation? Retrieved April 1, 2011, from LifeIssues.net: http://www.lifeissues.net/writers/kas/kas_01overpopulation.html
World POPClock Projection. (2010). Retrieved April 1, 2011 from U. S. Census Bureau: http://www.census.gov/ipc/www/popclockworld.html
PBS (2011). World in the balance http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/worldbalance/numbers.html
Lester R. Brown, The Earth Is Shrinking: Advancing Deserts and Rising Seas Squeezing Civilization, Earth Policy Institute, March 31, 2011
Photo World Population Clock