What Policies Can Be Implemented to Reduce Human Population Growth?

Topics: Population, Demography, World population Pages: 5 (1484 words) Published: November 17, 2012
The global rate of human population growth peaked during 1963. The number of people living on Earth, who are currently sharing limited resources, such as water and food, has amplified by more than two-thirds since 1963! Astonishingly, the world population is a bit over 6.6 billion today. Human population is anticipated to exceed 9 billion by 2050. A majority of Environmentalists agree that most, if not all environmental problems will arise, such as climate change, species extinction, and overzealous resource extraction. According to Population Connection, the increase of human population since the 1950’s resulted to the clearing of 80% of rain forests, the loss of thousands of plant and wildlife species, a rise in greenhouse gas emissions, and the commercialization of half of the Earth’s surface land. Environmentalist distress that in during the approaching decades half of the world’s population will be exposed to water-scarce conditions, which are expected to deepen the difficulties of meeting the consumption levels, and cause devastating effects on our delicately balanced ecosystems.

To allow the people of the world to enjoy a decent living without draining natural resources and causing severe climate change, demographic trends must be reversed and a balance must be achieved between population and resources. A number of countries are already aware that their population growth rate is too high and some, (such as China) have taken actions to decrease birthrates, which is the best way to check population growth and relieve pressure on the planet’s environment. Most developed countries objective is to reduce the world’s population down to 4 Billion during or hopefully earlier 2100. This objective can be reached by establishing a Restricted Family Policy, meaning a maximum of 2 children per-family in all countries with high population densities. This would lead to a fertility rate of less than 2.1, the level required for population replacement. It would be a good idea to take advantage of China's experience over the past 30 years, despite the bad press China's single child policy has gained, it has resulted in the avoidance of around 400 million births and the fertility rate has fallen from 5.44 in 1971 to 1.8 during 2005.

The goal of the Restricted Family Policy is to reduce the fertility rate as rapidly as possible to 1.5 in all countries that have over 10 million inhabitants. Why did scientists set the target rate at 1.5? Simply, because it is urgent that we decrease the number of consumers so the world total population doesn’t reach 9 billion by 2050. If we want to dodge resource depletion and intolerable environmental deterioration the Restricted Family Policy must be carried threw efficiently. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), "World greenhouse gas emissions attributable to human activities have grown since the preindustrial era. Between 1970 and 2004, the increase was 70%.” Most importantly during this process developed countries have an obligation to help decrease human population since they are the largest consumers and polluters in the world. As one may see below, policies in a number of developed countries to encourage large families must be abolished and increased immigration quotas encouraged, as they do not lead to an increased world population.

(2006) Fertility rates and total population
Country or Region Total Population (million) Fertility Rate

China 1,313 1.73 India 1,134 2.81 Africa 922 4.67 South America & Caribbean 558 2.37 United States 300 2.05 Indonesia...
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