OVER-POPULATION: CHALLENGES AND REMEDIES
The ever-increasing population has been the contention of many nations and has started posing a serious threat to human-kinds. As the world population keeps increasing, one question that looms large for us is the way scarce resources meet the needs of the people. Experts say the population explosion is far from over. This paper intends to gauge the challenges posed by the fast-increasing population and the countermeasures that can be adopted by the government to slow down population growth.
In the past half-century, the world population has increased by manifolds more than it has ever, and at a greater rate than it is expected in the future to grow. In 1950, the population of the world was 2.5 billion while in 2005 it was recorded at 6.5 billion. At the present, it is increasing at a rate of 1.2 percent every year. However, it is expected to rise to over 9 billion by the year 2050. (Photograph Randy Olson and *GDP figures are given in constant 1990 international dollars. JOHN TOMANIO, 2017) A major reason which can be attributed to the ever-increasing population is the advancement in the medical field such as the invention of various vaccination and finding the cure for some deadly diseases. Further, the improvement in the medical procedure of child delivery, especially in rural areas ultimately led to high birth and low death rates. (Van Bavel, 2013)
The economic prosperity experienced in developing countries, as a result of globalization, is another reason for the growing population. 75 percent of the world's population lives in developing countries. (Gilland, 2008) Overpopulation presents a host of challenges to the world and its inhabitants. Resources are scarce on this planet. The current population is over 7 billion people worldwide, which results in one in eight not having enough to eat. Thus, if the population keeps increasing at the current pace, the matter will get worse. It is estimated that an escalation in food production as well as imports of food from other nations will also not resolve the crisis of overpopulation in developing countries.
Other key problems associated with the increasing population are the issues of international migration and unemployment. These issues present a host of challenges for both the domestic country as well the country to which the population migrates too. The immigrant issue around the world is evident that the overpopulation problem leads to conflict and war among the nations. Thus, the problem of overpopulation needs to be addressed by the leaders of the world.
Keeping population growth in check is vital for eradicating poverty and hunger. Declining the high birth rate is required to control population growth. A change of attitude towards the common conception of family limitation needs to be promoted by educating through socioeconomic programs, and religious and cultural organizations. One of the key measures the government can take to check on the rising population is by educating people, especially those living in rural areas, about the repercussions of having a big family. The use of contraceptives should be promoted making them aware of the importance of family planning. Alternatively, it can also tackle the problem of unwanted pregnancies.
Another measure that can tackle overpopulation is encouraging people to adopt. If people having fertility issues adopt from orphanages and NGOs, instead of going for expensive treatments, then the population is kept in check and also get a new home for the homeless children in the world. Additionally, empowering and raising the status of women worldwide, especially in developing and under-developed countries can greatly help to reduce population growth. (Komu and Ethelberg, 2015) Encouraging women and girls to get education and jobs will help to change their traditional social outlook and contribute towards population control. There are women in many developing countries who are married way before they turn 18. These practices need to be targeted and the minimum age for marriage needs to be fixed at 21 for all.
To conclude, overpopulation is a grave issue that is plaguing the world with poverty, hunger, and scarce resources. Currently, the population is increasing at a higher rate than ever before. The major reasons for over-population are the advancement made in the medical fields and the economic prosperity worldwide which has led to high birth and lower death rates. Over-population can be countered by the government by educating and spreading awareness about the consequences of a big family. The women and girls of developing nations can be encouraged to study and work. This will open new avenues for them as well also change the rigid social outlook they have. Alternatively, encouraging the use of contraceptives and lowering fertility by promoting adoption could largely eradicate the problem of overpopulation.
Gilland, B. (2008). Overpopulation and Underdevelopment. Mankind Quarterly, 49(2).
Komu, E. and Ethelberg, S. (2015). Family planning and population control in developing countries: Ethical and sociocultural dilemmas. Online Journal of Health Ethics, 11.
Photograph Randy Olson, N. and *GDP figures are given in constant 1990 international dollars. JOHN TOMANIO, ”. (2017). As World’s Population Booms, Will Its Resources Be Enough for Us?. [online] News.nationalgeographic.com.
Van Bavel, J. (2013). The world population explosion: causes, backgrounds and projections for the future. Facts, Views & Vision in ObGyn, 5(4), pp.281–291.