Critique of "Population Bomb" by Paul Ehrlich

Essay by Tatum1University, Bachelor'sA-, December 1996

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'People are realizing that we cannot forever continue to multiply and

subdue the earth without losing our standard of life and the natural beauty

that must be part of it. these are the years of decision- the decision of men

to stay the flood of man.' Ehrlich here explains the one of the most pressing

problems facing man in the 20th century. In Population Bomb Ehrlich

explains that pollution, shortages, and an overall deterioation of the

standard of living is all due to overpopulation.

In chapter one Ehrlich explains the pressing problems facing modern

civilization and how these problems are directly or indirectly linked to

overpopulation. Ehrlich explains situation using various examples of how

mass starvation is inevitable if population continues to increase the way it is

currently. In third world countries their food supplies are becoming

increasingly scarce because of their increasing populations. In these third

world countries the rich-poor gap is increasing creating the potential for

large parts of the population to starve.

Paraphrasing Ehrlich's ideas in

chapter can be explained as; there is only so many resources and as

population increases those resources will soon be depleted. Ehrlich uses

historical population research to lead to the conclusion that in 90 years the

population could be well over the earths carrying capacity. In third world

countries where population control is rarely used population, pollution, and

scarcity are becoming ever increasing problems. Roughly 40% of the

population in third world countries are children 15 years or older. Ehrlich

explains that if population growth continues at this rate older generations

will find themselves without adequate food and medicine. Near the end of

the chapter Ehrlich explains the cause of the massive increase in population

growth; as he explains that science and medicine have decreased the death

rate exponentially while the...