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Environmental Class Project Lab

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Lesson 1
Responses to Questions

1. Based on the demographic data from this lab, multiple conclusions may be drawn about life in the countries examined and their relationships with each other. Living conditions are probably far worse in country’s earlier on in the transition. This causes death and birth rates to go down because of disease. 2. Social factors that contribute to lower birth rates in countries that are farther along include social gender equality, birth control, and more educational opportunities for women. These social conditions might be encouraged in less developed countries exposing the country to more modern cultures or the distribution of and education on birth control options. 3. Early, middle, and late demographic transition map the concepts of first, second, and third world countries because early countries are usually third world and late country’s first. 4. The most developed countries have shapes that are more like blocks and the least developed countries have steeper triangular shapes. 5. If a country has a steeper triangular shape than there are more children than those in the ‘prime of their life’ can take care of, causing the quality of life to go down. 6. The US’s demographic pattern about 100 years ago would be similar to those countries in the
Mechanization of Agriculture/Urbanization like Mexico or Nigeria. 7.China would be in the pre­industrial Age because their change occurred more rapidly. Factors that prompt women to have few children later in life include the rise in birth control and social equality. Lesson 2 Responses to Questions:

1. Population momentum is an important factor to consider when studying the demographics of a country. The shape changes from being a steep triangle to being mostly block­like during all

the generations after the change if a less developed country is given the birth rate of a more developed country. This is because the birth rates are from a more demographically stable country, causing the shape to look more stable. Because of population momentum. The change continues to affect the shape in subsequent generations. When the average child bearing age is increased, the population decreased because when women start having babies later in life, they have less time to have healthy children. Conversely, when the age is decreased, the population increased, as women have more time to have children. “First world” country’s tend to have older childbearing women do to the cultural factors of social gender equality and birth control. 2. The results from Italy were not what I predicted. I thought the changes would have a greater effect on birth rate than they did. This is probably because the population pyramid of Italy is more stable than that of Nigeria. Monetary incentives to employees who have multiple children would encourage more child birth in Italy.
3. The government might want to do this because their birth rates are decreasing. This would affect their demographics because a baby boom would make Italy’s pyramid steeper.
Lesson 3 Responses to Questions:

1. Another factor that may be explored when considering the demographics of a country is how they change when the birth and date rate are changed. 2. My prediction of how much the birth rate would have to be lowered and how much the death rate would have to go up to give Egypt a 0% population growth in 2050 were far too low. To make my prediction, I compared Egypt’s population growth rate in 2050, birth rate, and death rate to other countries and then tried to gauge how much the birth rate would have to decrease and the death rate increase to achieve a 0% growth rate. I then adjusted the values based on the results. In order to achieve a zero growth rate, Egypt would have to either lower the birth rate or increase the death rate. Obviously, decreasing the birth rate is the logical choice as there are ethical implications of artificially increasing the death rate.

3. However, the Egyptian government would also face ethical debates on decreasing the birth rate if they tried to enact laws against having a certain number of children. Egypt would need to change more than the Mexico and a lot more than the US to achieve a 0% population increase in 2050 because it is further from having a 0% population growth under current conditions. 4. Mexico has a higher birth rate and a lower death rate than the United States. This is probably because the United States is further along in the transition than Mexico is. Taking immigration into account would cause the pyramid to become steeper. Mexico would have to raise the birthrate or lower the death rate to maintain a zero population growth taking into account this factor. 5. Major sources are usually countries that are earlier in the transition; their inhabitants seek a better life and more opportunities in a country that is later in the transition. If a country’s population is outstripping its resources and ability to feed its people, yet is not allowed to migrate peacefully, they might face death due to overpopulation as there would not be enough resources to go around.

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