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Why the Population Growth Is Such A Serious Problem and The Effect It Is Having on the Earth's Environment

  • Word Count: 1279
  • Approx Pages: 5
  • Has Bibliography

The world's population has grown more in the last 50 years than it had
done in the previous 4 million years[1]. This quantum leap in the human
population has put severe strains on the finite resources and the fragile
environment of our planet. What is more, the present rate of the galloping
population growth shows no signs of slowing down, especially in the
developing countries. Such a high rate of growth is clearly unsustainable
and needs to be controlled before the runaway human population proves to be
the ultimate undoing of the human race itself. In this essay I shall
discuss why the population growth is such a serious problem and the effect
it is having on the earth's environment.
Debate about the effects of population growth has raged ever since,
Thomas Malthus, a British intellectual wrote his famous Essay on the
Principle of Population in 1798. Malthus contended that the tendency for
the population was to grow exponentially while food supplies could only
grow arithmetically. His theory meant that the human population was
destined to outstrip the global food supplies that would eventually lead to
widespread starvation and disease. This has clearly not happened[2] so far,
mainly because Malthus had not foreseen the extent to which technology,
farming techniques and the ‘Green Revolution' would increase food
production. (Hardaway 1188) Despite adequate availability of food in the
world as a whole, the WHO reports that as many as 19,000 people (mostly
infants and children) die each day from hunger and malnutrition. (Quoted by
Brown et al, 6) The difference in the situation predicted by Malthus and
the present scenario is that large numbers of people starve, not due to
shortage of food, but due to poverty. It is arguable, of course, whether
poverty too is the result of over-population. The Malthusians[3] fervently
believe it is so, while the anti-Malthusians are equally vehement in

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Why the Population Growth Is Such A Serious Problem and The Effect It Is Having on the Earth's Environment. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 01:54, July 29, 2016, from