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Overpopulation: The Impact of 10 Billion People by 2050

by | Jun 7, 2022 | Community, Dystopia




Never before there have been so many people on Earth as right now. There are currently over 7.6 billion people on earth and the number keeps growing. The human population is undergoing the longest period of exponential growth in history. It took 200,000 years for us to put the first billion people on earth and the next billion came in 100 years.

Population growth has skyrocketed from 1 billion in 1800 to 2.3 billion in 1940 and 3.7 billion in 1970. Now, we add 1 billion people to the planet every 12 years. And in 2011, the world population reached 7 billion people and 7.4 billion in 2016. That number is expected to grow to 8 billion in 2022 and reach 10 billion by 2050.

Already our 7 billion inhabitants impact the world in different ways. From use and depletion of our resources to destroying ecosystems such as land, food, water, air and fossil fuel. We also produce waste as a result of our consumption which in turn pollutes air, land and water and produces greenhouse gas.

The surge in population growth is due to improvements in agriculture and medicine. Which has also led to the consumption of even more resources and production waste even faster. Today we are consuming resources around 1.7 times faster than what the earth can regenerate. This basically means we need 1.7 earth to support mass consumption and waste production.

Life expectancy has increased by approximately 20 since 1960. While this is great for individuals and families, it has some downfalls on the planet. The world population is growing at 1.7% a year, which might not sound like very much. But 1.7% of 8 billion means that every day we add 370,000 people to the planet.

In fact, for every 2 people who die, about 4 are born. Every second, about four babies see light for the first time and less than two people are saying goodbye to it. So, our world’s population is growing by about 2.5 people per second. And this is unsustainable.

Impact of overpopulation

The problem of overpopulation is not new. It has been a growing concern for decades, especially for developing countries. However, in the 21st century, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in the global populace. Especially in developing countries such as India, the number of people is staggering, with more than a billion people making it the second most populated country in the world behind China.

Even if you removed 1 billion people from India, it will still be the second most populated country in the world. The current population growth rate is historically unusual and untenable over the long run. Overpopulation occurs when human inhabitants exceed the capacity of a natural environment.

The increased population leads to overconsumption of natural resources and space. Overpopulation also causes deforestation, extinction of wildlife and overharvesting of resources. It can also affect economies because of the need for more resources to sustain the growing inhabitant. As more resources become scarce, prices will rise.

Population growth throughout history has impacted natural ecosystems and has led to the extinction of many species. Although some of the species have become extinct, many others are being protected from humans. Increased human populations contributed to pollution, acidification of the oceans, destruction of natural habitats and overexploitation of animals and natural resources.

Additionally, overpopulation affected the health of humans and animals. It changed the natural processes that allow different species to survive. The human population is also responsible for the overpopulation of certain animals and insects. In addition, overpopulation can erode land and resources and also cause increased carnivore numbers.

Moreover, over populace can affect the standards of living of individuals and entire societies. Population growth has caused poverty in many countries. Which has led to more problems than solutions. Overpopulation region has a higher rate of unemployment. Many unemployed people resort to illegal activities to survive.

The increased global inhabitant also causes more crime as unemployed individuals seek more money from illegal activities. The cost of living also increased as well, leading to rising prices of food, medical care and asylum. Ultimately, overpopulation creates social unrest and increases crime and poverty rates.

Many children grow up without adequate assets and become dependent on themselves for survival. Children have to be productive and provide for their families. Underdeveloped countries have higher birth rates and have an unforgiving effect on resources, such as water and food.

an overcrowded street

Local overpopulation occurs when the occupant of a region or country exceeds its capacity to provide basic needs. This can happen because of the rate at which people are born or because available resources have declined or been replaced by new technology. Hence, overpopulation can also result in intelligent brains flowing out of the region to seek a better environment.

The United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) studies the human population’s consumption of non-renewable resources. Over inhabitant also causes excessive agriculture, environmental pollution and extensive land development. These factors are detrimental to the environment.

Consequences of overpopulation

The overpopulation problem has many effects, such as the overcrowding of cities, destitution, crime, pollution and political instability. As the global inhabitants’ increases, this can outstrip food production and the consequences became even more direr. In fact, it can cause extreme poverty and starvation among the poorest nations in the world.

It can also negatively affect fisheries and water supplies caused by overfishing. In the long run, overpopulation can result in the starvation of animals also. Further, it can lead to increased pollution, which can be dangerous and life-threatening. Not to mention that we have started to feel the effects of climate change and global warming.

overcrowded slum area
Image by Phạm Quốc Nguyên from Pixabay

Overpopulation has significant effects on biological diversity and should be addressed. It has also resulted in the overuse and destruction of arable land. Having too many people means that resources will be depleted faster than they can be replaced. As a result, people are faced with starvation, malnutrition and faster consumption of natural resources.

Moreover, it can result in the degradation of living conditions and the loss of cultural heritage. Further, over populace may cause a host of other environmental problems, such as the decline of ecosystems. And the impact of overpopulation on climate will continue to increase as the population increases.

There will be huge regional shifts in global economic activity as a result of the rise of the population. The shifts in global economic activity will depend on several factors, including the economic situation of the country. Those factors will affect life expectancy and, in turn, national income and GDP growth.

Asia’s population is expected to grow to 5.3 billion by 2055, while the occupants of Japan and South Korea are projected to shrink. During the same period, the inhabitants of Latin America and the Caribbean are predicted to overtake that of Europe. The United States and Canada will have the lowest birth rates, but the population of their two countries will increase.

Many countries will face a crisis in end-of-life care for the elderly. The resident of the world will experience an aging process unprecedented in history. These demographic trends will have far-reaching effects on the world but the forces driving these changes are already in place.

In the United States, the largest concerns about population growth are related to demographic distribution and the environmental and natural resource implications. However, the consequences of this rapid growth are not as dire as those of the past and a constructive reaction to population growth is necessary.

The population growth in developing countries is also unprecedented. Currently, more than 5.7 billion people live in developing countries. That represents 86% of the world’s population. In 2050, the inhabitant of the least developed countries will grow by 1.7 billion. Which will take the total number of people in developing countries to around 8 billion.

This will result in a shortage of resources, overcrowding, and famine. In developing countries, overcrowding is particularly harmful, as more people means more demand for infrastructure. Additionally, more people means fewer jobs and higher prices for goods and services. This will lead to growing slum areas.

Water is our most basic need and our global population is expected to reach 10 billion by the year 2050. This means increased demand for clean water. Already today, one out of three people don’t have access to safe drinking water and it is projected that more than half of the world population will be living in water-stressed areas by 2050.

These aren’t just issues happening in developing countries but lots of developed communities are also experiencing water scarcity. The world is awash in water, around 70% of our planet’s surface is covered with it. However, about 96% of that water is found in the oceans which are saturated with salt and are undrinkable. And most of the earth’s freshwater is stored in glaciers.

Less than 1% of earth’s water is available to us. Water scarcity will affect the quality of food, agriculture and industry, and could ultimately cause a political crisis, conflict and social order. A water conflict is something the world doesn’t want to witness. If we are unable to cope with the effects of overpopulation, we will be left with few options.

There are many arguments about why overpopulation is bad. In some areas, overcrowding is a major cause of conflict and warfare. In others, a high population increases the need for resources. Furthermore, overpopulation can also be detrimental to our health. Human populations often lack access to quality resources, including clean water and food.

Overpopulation can lead to disease outbreaks. Cholera, a bacterial disease of the small intestine, is one such example. Cholera and typhoid fever are also common and dangerous diseases in overpopulated areas.

Hence, overpopulation results in increased pollution, deforestation and increased demand for basic necessities. It also contributes to global warming and climate change. It also destroys biodiversity, causing conflicts and starvation.

The question of whether overpopulation is bad is an important one for the future of our world. While the consequences are difficult to pin down, overpopulation is one of the biggest challenges mankind faces today.