Overpopulation and Environmental Degradation

In: Social Issues

Submitted By jcarling
Words 1786
Pages 8
Jessica Carling 10/28/2010 Tues/Thur. 2:00 - 3:15
Overpopulation and Environmental Degradation The planet on which we live is dying, harsh: yes, but true. The sustaining capacity of the globe is shrinking a little bit every year and soon, if the population trend continues at the current rate the sustaining capacity will have reached its peak. The ignorance of humanity has lead all to believe that the planets resources are infinite well, I'm here to tell you that research, study, and observation has proven that it is in fact very finite. The population explosion has its roots in developing countries such as China and India, the two most populous countries in the world. The basic fact is people are having more children than their surrounding environment can support. Overpopulation is creating severe problems to the air quality, water supplies, and cropland sustainability; cultural views pose as road blocks to taking steps toward destroying this epidemic. Should the population continue at its current rate of expansion there will be an estimated 50 billion people on the planet by the dawn of the next century according to Arthur McCormack in his 1970 book The Population Problem (9). The question now is are we as a species destined to die from resource depletion or are there ways to stop this growth before it becomes a global catastrophe? Walter K. Dodds, author of Humanities Footprint, mentions the case of Easter Island as "One of the most dramatic cases of humans harming the ecosystems that support them"(35). The Polynesians arrived on an island paradise, but that paradise quickly turned into what could be termed a nightmare. The population quickly expanded and the Islanders began to cut down trees in order to make canoes which served as modes of transportation to the main land…...

Similar Documents

Overpopulation

...There are many environment problems, such as pollution, untreated sewage, and overpopulation. Although all of these issues have an impact on our society, overpopulation stands to have the greatest impact on our environment. Overpopulation is excessive human population in an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources and environmental deterioration. The three most negative impacts overpopulation on the environment are water pollution and overconsumption One of the major sources of water pollution is organic pollution, which is becoming more and more pressing on the environment because of the growing population of the world. It's a simple concept, the more people there are in one area, the more waste they will produce. For example, in a city there are so many people that the sewage plants and the environment can't take care of all of the waste and function in its usual manner. The sewage plants do their best, but the secondary discharge that gets into the water supply causes great problems. The excess waste acts as a food source for algae and the growth rate is uncontrollable. Everyone has been in a lake where there is a lot of dead algae on the shore and the water is clouded with algae. This situation is known as eutrophication, where algae growth is out of control and the water becomes oxygen depleted. There are natural cycles of eutrophication in the spring and fall, but the body of water can deal with those amounts. When excess waste is added to......

Words: 871 - Pages: 4

Overpopulation

...10/15/12 Eng 201H Overpopulation Since the year of 2011, the world population climbs up the ladder to seven billion people. According to a survey given out by SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, overpopulation is the world’s top environmental issue, followed by climate change (Science Daily). Overpopulation started through the third world countries, where most people are not being educated or given the option of contraceptives due to cultural reasons. With the rate of the human population growing, the risks of human going through starvation and illnesses due to environmental issues increase every day. Environmental risks due to the depletion of forests, fresh water, fossil fuels, and land that all consumed by humans. Overpopulation might not seem as a serious issue to people that disagrees about human overpopulating the Earth has causes major damage and tragedy around the world, but because of overpopulation, we are a step closer to turmoil. Traditionally, human population increases because people are eager to pass on genes and or last names to the next generations; especially those people that in countries that in extremely poor conditions follows those traditions. Mary Ellen Harte, a journalist from the Los Angeles Times mentions about how females are “culturally conditioned daily to welcome the idea of having children – plural, not one or none” (Harte). Many women whether being under cultural influence or not, lack the idea on how to support those......

Words: 2454 - Pages: 10

Who Is Most Responsible for Environmental Degradation?

... Who is most responsible for environmental degradation? Name: Yichang(Kathy) Chen Course: YUELI DY Instructor: Ben Collins Nowadays, environmental degradation has become the current greatest issue all over the world. Many scientists warn that if environmental degradation can not be prevented, one day the earth will suffer destructive disease such as natural diseases and the end of earth without any early warning. A great number of environmental problems now have a serious effect on our world. As globalization is booming, which causes the earth’s natural problems to change into international issues, all nations will suffer great damage and need to keep a watchful eye on environmental degradation. There are some urgent problems which are now affecting the world, and which we need to solve quickly, are acid rain, air pollution, global warming, hazardous waste, ozone depletion, smog, water pollution and so on. It is easy to see that environmental degradation is a serious issue for the whole international community. If we want to solve it, the most principle point we need to research is what causes it. As we know, human beings and nature itself need to carry on the responsibility of environmental degradation as two main parts in the world. Although environment can be changed over time by natural process, it is not ignorable that human activities have great impacts on environment. According to many scientists, compared with......

Words: 2097 - Pages: 9

Overpopulation

...Overpopulation Overpopulation is becoming a serious concern. There will soon not be enough room or food for all of us. This world that we live on has natural limits that the human population is radically exceeding. Throughout my life I have experienced my town that I grew up in becoming overpopulated also known as Belton, Texas. In my high school there was about 2600 kids my senior year. Every year that number got extraordinarily bigger. Our hallways were too crowded. It was like trying to walk through the crowd in a concert. Therefore it was impossible. They tried to fix this problem by making our main hallway a one way hallway. However, that just caused the other hallways in our school to be more crowded than usual. I would always be late to class due to the fact that you couldn’t get through the hallways. The fastest way to get to class was to walk around the building outside. Also the lockers were a big concern. My high school only had 1500 lockers compared to the 2600 students that they needed to supply them for. It was basically first come first serve however if you were a freshman or a sophomore you were not going to get a locker because the juniors and seniors got to keep their locker from their sophomore or junior year. So in all reality it was a unfair process and students were complaining to the school but there was nothing my high school could do because it had no way of expanding. Secondly, my school cafeteria never had enough food to supply to the......

Words: 663 - Pages: 3

What Is Environmental Degradation?

...What is Environmental Degradation? What is it like on farmland? The Term Environmental Degradation (E.D) used to describe a situation in which a part of the natural environment is damaged through depletion of resources such as air, water And soil. There are many different types E.D. of Such as soil erosion, Soil salinization, deforestation, desertification, and Bush Encroachment. So worldwide Environments are being threating, damaged, or killed due to human interaction with the environment. Our effect on the environment ties in to many problems going on today in the world but I am going to many focus on one Environmental Degradation on farm lands and its effect on us all. Nine months ago in the Philippines thousands of people fear for their lives due to alarming environmental conditions due to excessive mining near by. The article stated, “Because the mining operation mountains were rendered bald causing hundreds of ton of erosion that filled the rivers and covered the farmland” this make farming a lot harder. There are a few effects from the erosion desertification, dust storms and lose of environments. The vegetation is gone and no topsoil, no humus. Affecting the hydrologic cycle because the soil has a low water holding capacity focus run off to occur and soil to dry out, desertification. Lose of water means lose of life, no organism are going to survive. Taking a toll on both The Carbon, and Nitrogen cycle. Without plant life in this area the both cycles will be thrown......

Words: 359 - Pages: 2

Overpopulation a Growing Problem

...During my expedition through the Museum of Modern Art in San Jose I saw a photograph that hit me like a bolt of lightning and got me thinking about probably the world’s biggest problem, overpopulation. The photograph I saw was called Architecture of Density and it was taken by photographer and artist Michael Wolf. The photograph portrayed a massive building in Hong Kong that looked as if it was built to house thousands of people using the least amount of space possible. The apartment building seemed to be designed to have people crammed together with no room to move. Although Wolf’s main focus of his picture was to show viewers that the culture of Hong Kong starts in the homes of the people, I saw Wolf’s photograph as a look into the far more complicated issue of overpopulation, whose effects are currently felt worldwide and are slowly getting worse. Human overpopulation on earth is the leading cause of many of the planet’s problems. Overpopulation is defined as “excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration”, (Answers). The problems caused by the overpopulation of humans range from the extreme of global warming/climate change, pollution, water shortages, desertification and depletion of other resources to other smaller problems such as deforestation, species extinction and overcrowding. However unfortunately, few governments or government officials around the world are willing to look...

Words: 3637 - Pages: 15

Overpopulation

...Overpopulation and its Contenders Population has become a challenge in the world today. In recent years, there has been a significant amount of growth in the world population. According to the Census Bureau, at the start of this year, the United States population will have reached a new record of more than 317 million people. That makes us the third most populous country on the planet, behind only China (1.35 billion) and India (1.23 billion) (Schlesinger 2013). This has led to sever problems for poor nations developing and developed countries all around the world. Therefore, government of these countries need to take immediate action to control population. There appears to be many problems caused by overpopulation. The first of these is the depletion of resources. The Earth can only produce a limited amount of water and food, which is falling short of the current needs. Degradation of Environment, rise in unemployment, and a higher cost of living are among the additional problems that are caused by overpopulation. Furthermore, a number of solutions might be made to control birth rates by the government. First and foremost, I would like to acknowledge that I do not support the government in taking actions to limit the number of children we are allowed to have. I believe that this type of control violates a much-cherished personal freedom in starting a family and passing your genes on to your offspring. Instead of limiting us, they can educate residents......

Words: 708 - Pages: 3

Links Between Environmental Degradation and Conflict

...Links between environmental degradation and conflict Sarah Meston Sheridan College Certain scholars are correct to argue that there is a link between environmental degradation and conflict for the following reasons droughts, the melting of the arctic and Migration which social security. The melting of the arctic could lead to upcoming tensions about formerly not accessible resources so it remains unclear who has the right to use these resources. Droughts cause environmental scarcity which causes conflict through competition for scarce natural resources. A real world example would be the environmental degradation of Kenya. The main parts of environmental degradation in Kenya are erosion due to wind and water, soil nutrient depletion, salinity, acidity, compaction, reduction in organic matter, and the effects of toxic chemicals and pollution. Kenya went to war with other places because of the lack of resources which killed thousands and destroyed many farmer’s fields all because of environmental degradation. Certain scholar’s statement that there is a link between environmental degradation is valid. References Gaston, A. J., & Elliott, K. H. (2013, March 1). Effects of Climate-Induced Changes in Parasitism, Predation and Predator-Predator. Arctic, 66(1), 43-51. Retrieved from http://web.a.ebscohost.com.library.sheridanc.on.ca/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=4&sid=cbbff139-7fe6-45bd-b41a-308c0f636e2e%40sessionmgr4001&hid=4104 The articile is about the......

Words: 1016 - Pages: 5

Environmental Degradation

...ENVIRONMENTAL degradation in Uzumba, Maramba and Pfungwe (UMP) district has become a haven of massive land ruin. Own Correspondent It emerged during a recent tour organised by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) last week that the area, which also bore the brunt of extremely high temperatures, has increasingly become arid, making attempts to carry out agricultural activities a futile exercise. Along the 30km stretch from Chitsungo shopping centre into Pfungwe, a few women could be seen walking along the road balancing either buckets of water or maize meal on their heads. At Mazowe River, one could see a number of new mining machines including, earth movers, generators and water pumps used in the extraction of alluvial gold along the river. The mining activities have had a negative impact on the environment. The river was in a sorry state due to the mining activities. It was blocked at each side, with heaps of soil occupying the middle section. A small, man–made river channel was constructed on the far end of the main river channel to direct water to the other end. It is massive siltation that has choked the water body. At the river bank is a large tract of land that has been dug up, leaving deep pits. One of the miners in the area, an American national, Garry Cornelius whose Light Weight Mining Company is behind this environmental degradation said he was aware of the massive siltation and his mining company was on a mission of de-siltation of the river. “Mining......

Words: 630 - Pages: 3

Overpopulation

...This essay will mainly present the reasons of overpopulation, then discuss some effective solution. The most fundamental reason is that the decline in death rate. On the one hand, people currently put more attention on their health. For example, people could know knowledge of health from website, then buy useful food or their body. Therefore, more people will become longevous. On the other hand, with the development of medical and technology, the disease can not easily kill people. At the same time, there are more equipments at hospital for healing patients’ disease. As a result, the number of people who are longevous will increase a lot. Second reason is that there are a big amount people who have little knowledge about the harm of overpopulation. Some of them married when they are at a young age. Due to this, they may producing more babies. In addition, some people have incorrect knowledge of sex. It will also increase the chance of having a baby. In my opinion, one effective solution is that government release some policy to avoid people married too early. Government could also avoid people have their second baby by charge them a big amount tax. However, it is not enough that government only release some policies, they should also improve citizens’ awareness of avoiding overpopulation. School should teach students the disadvantage of overpopulation and basic knowledge of sex. In conclusion, the main reason of overpopulation is the increasing death rate. The only......

Words: 320 - Pages: 2

Overpopulation

...Negative Effects of Overpopulation Depletion of Natural Resources The effects of overpopulation are quite severe. The first of these is the depletion of resources. The Earth can only produce a limited amount of water and food, which is falling short of the current needs. Most of the environmental damage being seen in the last fifty odd years is because of the growing number of people on the planet. They are cutting down forests, hunting wildlife in a reckless manner, causing pollution and creating a host of problems. Those engaged in talking about overpopulation have noticed that acts of violence and aggression outside of a war zone have increased tremendously while competing for resources. Degradation of Environment: With the overuse of coal, oil and natural gas, it has started producing some serious effects on our environment. Rise in the number of vehicles and industries have badly affected the quality of air. Rise in amount of CO2 emissions leads to global warming. Melting of polar ice caps, changing climate patterns, rise in sea level are few of the consequences that we might we have to face due to environment pollution. Conflicts and Wars Overpopulation in developing countries puts a major strain on the resources it should be utilizing for development. Conflicts over water are becoming a source of tension between countries, which could result in wars. It causes more diseases to spread and makes them harder to control. Starvation is a huge issue facing the world...

Words: 388 - Pages: 2

Overpopulation

...Overpopulation The world is facing an enormous challenge in the future. The world population is growing tremendously every day. It´s estimated to grow with 200.000 people per day on a world wide scale. The UN has different calculations and predictions for our future and one of them is saying that at the end of the century the world will have 16 billion people. But the earth´s size is not the problem. France could technically contain the whole world´s 7 billion inhabitants and there would be room enough for everyone. The problem is food… We are not able to feed every individual human being in the future, we can´t already. Therefore, we are looking for other alternatives, such as changing our way of living and diet. Eating insects maybe wouldn´t be so strange in the nearest future. The technologically progress in last 100 years has also made an enormous impact the our living conditions. We are getting older and older, and more children survive their first couple of years. Thanks to medicine, such as penicillin, which truly has made our standard of living way better than ever in the history of mankind. It is not possible to know exact what our future will look like, but it´s changing and it´s changing fast. It will be necessary for us to adapt to the new circumstances we are facing. If we want to maintain our way of life and our values, we have been struggling for so many years to achieve. So that’s what we are going to do now. Yeas that......

Words: 425 - Pages: 2

Overpopulation

...Global Issues, Role of United Nations and Japan’s International Contributions Contents Introduction 3 History of Overpopulation 3 Industrial Revolution 3 Invention of Birth control 4 Risks of Overpopulation 4 Food 4 Water Shortage 4 Civil Conflict 5 Poverty 5 Case Study 5 Government policies 6  Taxation policy 6  Education Subsidies 6  Government Transfers 6 Effectiveness Of Government Policies 6 Conclusion 7 References 8 Introduction Overpopulation as defined by Dhirubhai Ambani is “where an organism’s numbers exceed the current carrying capacity of its habitat” (Ambani, 2013) There are many causes of overpopulation and overpopulation occurs when the number of organisms is of too great a number compared to the relevant resources and as a result, resources such as the water and essential nutrients they need to survive are inadequate. This can be a result from an increase in births, a decline in mortality rates, an increase in immigration, or an unsustainable biome and depletion of resources. This paper seeks to discuss how overpopulation began as well as the risk it carries. History of Overpopulation Industrial Revolution Prior to the industrial revolution, the world’s population did not change much. This was probably due to the fact that resources were difficult to come by. People were worried their ability to provide for their families would not be adequate. Furthermore, poor nutrition and famines were common. The average life......

Words: 1588 - Pages: 7

Assess the View That Economic Development Is Not Possible Without Causing Environmental Degradation – 15 Marks.

...Assess the view that economic development is not possible without causing environmental degradation – 15 marks. Overall, I feel that it is mainly large scale economic development projects that are not possible without causing some environmental degradation. Construction is one of the main reasons for this, for any development to take place an area must be used efficiently to maximize space for development. A great example of this is the 3 Gorges Dam in China; this cost over $25 billion to build. Yes, it was financially positive, however a lot of land was taken, which led to huge disruptions in local ecosystems. Also china has a huge demand for Iron; this is in order to build the buildings and also for the growing demands of the car industry. Its Iron industry imports grew 34% in first four months, 2007 – feeds steel making industry. Also their steel industry is 4 x bigger than the USA, and makes 500,000,000 tonnes/year. The construction also produced large quantities of pollution which was washed downstream. With China having such a large population, it was said in 2003 13.6 in 100 people had car. Also more resources such as Oil to run the car, iron ore to make cars, rubber, wheels; oil consumption is said to of doubled in China in the last 10 years = 10% global demand. Again China is starting to overtake the USA in total oil consumption. China are said to build roughly two power stations every week, which leads to the release of large amount of carbon dioxide, a......

Words: 664 - Pages: 3

Overpopulation

...a particular geographical area, and have the capability of interbreeding. Overpopulation: Overpopulation is a function of the number of individuals compared to the relevant resources, such as the water and essential nutrients they need to survive. It can result from an increase in births, a decline in mortality rates, an increase in immigration, or an unsustainable biome and depletion of resources. Causes of Overpopulation: Decline in death rate: Root of overpopulation is the difference between the overall birth rate and death rate in populations. If the number of children born each year equals the number of adults that die, then the population will stabilize. Population increases due to increases of birth rate for long period of time then death rate. Improvement of agriculture provides nutrition without hunting. Better Medical facilities: Better medical facility is another reason of overpopulation. Science invents different vaccines and treatments for life threatening diseases. Due to this this death rate decreases. Rise in Illiteracy rate: Uneducated people do not know about the harmful effects of overpopulation. They give birth to large number of child and do not provide them the basic needs of life. Technological Advancement in Fertility Treatment: Advancement of technological facilities also play important role in overpopulation. Medical sciences discoveries provide different methods for child birth to......

Words: 645 - Pages: 3