Is Limiting Population a Key Factor in Protecting the Global Environment

Essay by rajpenUniversity, Bachelor'sB+, March 2004

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Population growth is one of the major environmental issues today. Some people argue, that rapidly growing population is not only problem and humans will not destroy life-support system on which we all depend. Contrary some argue that growing population is a key driver factor of environmental destruction. The purpose of this research project is to explain the main arguments of both sides and to recommend possible action in order to face with most important problems. Many countries see contradictory the problem of population growth. Those country with relatively low population growth but high rates of consumption said that the population is a main problem. On the other hand countries with low level of consumption but high birth rates said that the consumption is a main problem. This debate is one of the main issues in modern view of environment, so which policy we should apply? Should we try to reduce population growth or consumption, or perhaps both?

2.Human population History

According to Cunningham (2000) for a most of human history, population growth was very slow. Many studies of hunting and gathering societies show that the total world population wasn't more than a few million people before innovation of agriculture and the domestication of animals around 10,000 years ago. The bigger and more secure food supply results in human population to growth, reaching perhaps 50 million people (b.c). Moreover, some historical evidence and description suggest that only about 300 million people were living at the time of Christ. During the Middle Age, many diseases and wars held world population. The main reasons were lack of hygiene and life condition and as consequence made human life short and uncertain. During the most destructive disease, plaque that took many lives between 1348 and 1350, it is estimated that at...