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Population Control and Reproductive Rights: Mutual Coercion, Decreased Consumption, Women’s Empowerment, or Human Extinction?

Author: Amy Kash
Organisation: St. Olaf College
Publish Date: 2009
Country: Global
Sector: Environmental
Method: Forecasting
Theme: Sustainability
Type: Article
Language: English
Tags: Population growth, Reproduction, Consumption, Natural resources, Ecological destruction

Imagine it is the year 2050. The human population has continued to grow at its current rate, and there are 10.6 billion people on the planet. Although population growth in developed countries has been stable for the last 40 years, it has escalated exponentially in developing countries, and they now contain 88% of the total world population (Kates, 52). Consumption levels have not decreased in developed countries and have dramatically increased in the developing world. Natural resources are scarce; there is limited arable land for agriculture, and species of plants and animals are rapidly becoming extinct. The Earth is unable to provide sufficient subsistence to all its human inhabitants, and it is unclear how the human race will continue its existence on a withering planet completely overcome with the destructive lifestyles of an increasing number of human beings. Is there any way to solve this problem and save the endangered human species? Or are humans destined to join their fellow biotic community members and face extinction?
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