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The Enviromental Degradation as a Result of Overpopulation

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:29 AM
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There are simply too many people on our planet, and the population is not showing any signs of

slowing down(see Figure 1).   It is having disastrous effects on our environment.   There are too many

implications   and interrelationships to discuss in this paper, but the three substances that our earth

consists of: land, water and air, are being destroyed.   Our forests are being cut down at an alarming

rate, bearing enormous impacts on the health of earth.   Our oceans and seas are being polluted and

overfished.   Our atmosphere   is injected with increasing amounts of carbon dioxide, which hurts the

entire planet.   All of these problems can be traced to our vast, rapidly expanding population, which has

stressed our world far too greatly.

Our Population

In 1994, the world population was 5 602 800 000.   This population had a doubling time of only

forty-one years (De Blij and Muller, 1994, p.527).   The massive amount of people has had highly

destructive impacts on the earth’s environment.   These impacts occur on two levels: global and local.   On

the global level, there is the accumulation   of green house gases that deplete the ozone layer, the

extinction of species, and a global food shortage.   On the local level, there is erosion of soils (and

the loss of vegetation), the depletion of water supply, and toxification of the air and water.   The earth

is dynamic though, all of these aspects are interrelated, and no one impact   is completely isolated.   All

of these destructive elements can be traced to our enormous population.   As the population increases, so

do all of the economic, social, and technological impacts.

The concept of momentum of population growth is one that must be considered.   It states that

areas with traditionally high fertility rates will have a very young structure age....


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