Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Lament for a Small Planet: Overpopulation

There are too damned many people in the world. Jonathan Watts reports that the Chinese population is expected to peak at 1.46 billion around the year 2035.

Then in 2050, India's population is expected to peak at 1.6 billion.

How are we going to feed all these people? WWF is reporting that we are already running an ecological debt.

The Living Planet Report 2004 shows that humans currently consume 20 per cent more natural resources than the earth can produce, and that populations of terrestrial, freshwater and marine species fell on average by 40 per cent between 1970 and 2000.

"We are spending nature's capital faster than it can regenerate," said Dr Claude Martin, Director General of WWF International. "We are running up an ecological debt which we won't be able to pay off unless governments restore the balance between our consumption of natural resources and the earth's ability to renew them." |Link|

I hope the human race continues long after I'm gone. But I have to wonder if we're going to last much past 2050. And I'll count myself lucky if I stick around until 2050.

Ian Sample suggests 12 fragiles pieces of our environment that are most likely to suffer catastrophic climate change in the near future.

Of course, the world will keep spinning....with or without us pernicious, self-important monkeys.

Hopefully China will use its excess population to colonize Mars. That would at least be interesting....

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