The Effects of Population Increase on the Environment

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As inevitable as death and taxes, the population of the world will continue to grow until the government intervenes. The gross increase in population will generally lead to adverse effects on the environment. In the anthology, A Forest of Voices, an entry titled "Is It Too Late?" by Anthony Weston deals with the history of legislation for the protection of the environment and stories of it's destruction that are all too real. Seemingly, as the population increases, so should the level of intelligence for a sample population which would necessarily lead to a certain form of protection to the environment.

It would seem quite apparent that an increase in population has a causal relationship with the status of the environment. Some factors that may lead to this are underlying, though. When this notion comes to mind, the immediate reaction may be that a population increase would deem more space to be required for the new population. This includes any area that is necessary for human survival, such as farmland area, water consumption, area to reside, and the production of all products necessary for an individual to function in society. There are statistics to prove this theory. All of the statistics given are a 20 year projection from 1990 to 2010 (Bryant). The projection shows that the population will increase just fewer than 2 billion in this period (Bryant). This would be about a 33% increase in population (Bryant). The study shows that in these 20 years, the amount of fish caught will increase 20%; the area of cropland will increase 5%; and the area of forests will decrease by 7% (Bryant). Granted these figures do not look too dangerous, but we are already three-quarters of the way through the projection. From these statistics, the future is starting to seem bleak.

From these figures, it can be derived that the resources on Earth will eventually be depleted by the hand of man. As grim as the future may seem, there might be some hope just over...