Population Bomb blown away? (Slate.fr, France)

Population Bomb "blown away"?  ("Slate.fr", France)Indeed if overpopulation of our planet will be inconsistencies?

In 2012, the seemingly unstoppable movement to overpopulation of the world has passed through the main mark, if they believe the U.S. Census Bureau, in some places on our planet was born semimilliardny people.

That lucky lucky girl or a serial number 7000000000, most likely, will celebrate its own first day of birth in March this year. And will be a new sinker in the balance of the population, which has long been intensively reaches into more than a limited food, energy and water resources. According to the Los Angeles Times in a dedicated event series of 5 articles if this trend will continue and further, "the living conditions of the vast majority of the world's population will be very unfortunate."

It seems however, another, more nebulous point, is not attracted media attention: to reach the mark of seven billion population of the earth took 13 years. And it's more than 12 years, who had gone to the emergence of six billionth inhabitant of our planet. In other words, for the first time in the history of mankind, this interval has increased, not decreased: thresholds in the two, three, four and five billion have been overcome, respectively, for 123, 33, 14 and 13 years old. In other words, the rate of growth of world population went into decline. And this trend has to continue in coming. In general, how to predictions of the best professionals in the total world population will not grow for one human life.

And then begin to decline.

This kind of idea of going against the tide in the U.S., where we have deafened us about the growth of the world's population, which is a terrible and perhaps even imminent danger to the future of the human species. Yet, much more vserasprostranennym concept in most states of the developed world is just the same demographic decline: the birth rate there has long been below 2.1 for the baby lady who need to maintain the balance of the population.

The Company contracts

In Germany, the birth rate have gained anti-record of 1.36 at the lady kid, even worse than that, too, not sparkling fruit decent neighbors in Spain (1.48) and Italy (1.4). If this trend continues then by the end of the century the population of Western Europe will be reduced from 460 million to 350 million people. But it is, in principle, not so bad on the background of the Russian Federation and China: their populations can be reduced by half.

The fact that South American media in its own majority chose to ignore the issue of demographic decline is explained simply: in the U.S. it just has not come yet. In contrast to Europe, the United States has long been felt by themselves for the effects of mass immigration. This allowed us not only to increment the number of people who call the United States their home, and strengthen fertility, because immigrants usually give birth to more babies than the native inhabitants.

It seems that it may, in the coming years, these two trends are likely to come to naught. As of December should report research organization Pew Research Center, the birth rate in the middle of immigrants fell from 102 per 1,000 women in 2008 to 87,8 ‰ in 2012. All this lowers the total fertility rate in the United States to less than 64 per 1,000 women, which is not enough to maintain the population at current levels.

In addition, in poor countries, which once supplied us the whole immigrant ships, and also there was a decline of fertility characteristics. In the period from 1960 to 2009 year birth rate in Mexico fell from 7.3 babies on the lady to 2.4 in India — from 6 to 2.5, in Brazil — from 6.15 to 1.9. Moreover, it is expected that by 2070 the birth rate fall below updates generations even in Central Africa, where it is now at 4.66 Kids on the lady. Such demographic configuration in developing countries, it is easy to guess the impact is not only on the United States, and the rest of the world.

The demographic transition

So what does happen? How to find the special on the dynamics of the population, the situation can explain the phenomenon under the title of "demographic transition".

"For hundreds of thousands of years, the birth rate was to remain very highest, to allow the public to experience the land of the epidemic, war and famine," — explains Dr. savings from the Institute of Stony Brook Warren Sanderson (Warren Sanderson). At some point, thanks to the development of technologies mortality in Europe and North America began to decline, and the population began to grow rapidly. But then went down already, and the curve of fertility and population stood still.

The same pattern repeats in the world. The demographic transition, according to Sanderson, it is "the difference between with 2 very dissimilar situations: between the highest birth rate and death rate and low birth rate and mortality." This process is not only perfectly described, and most clearly manifested in practice chisla kids in more than half the world's population is at the moment not enough to update the generations.

If modern Germany is similar to the world of the future of the day, our future will not be what we imagined it to yourself to this day. How to find the internationality of the Austrian Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), replaced in order to race at full speed in the direction of uncontrolled population explosion population the world will reach a peak at 9 billion people around 2070.

The positive aspect is that the depletion of resources (this is the problem has long been our brains) can end up being dangerous. Yet, that is not far so well, the demographic transition to a greater number of older people to the detriment of the number of active employees can drop the whole world into some sort of endless economic stagnation, which is currently established in the Land of the Rising Sun.

And in the long term (a few centuries), it can go even a literal extinction of mankind.

Such a statement may seem overwhelming, but the evidence for it is quite easy to carry out the calculation. Should be made public as of the 2008 report IIASA, if the global fertility rate will stabilize at around 1.5 (a modern European level) by 2200, the world population will reach only half of today. And by 2300 it almost surpass billion. The creators of the report told me that since its publication some details have changed (the population of Europe declining faster than expected, while birthrate decreases slower in Africa), but in general terms, their prognosis remains the same. Continue this trend and will see that after a few generations of 10-s of the survivors on the planet people can cram in one nursing home.

When it will happen?

It seems however, vouch for the accuracy of these predictions impossible. Acquired IIASA numbers are based on the analysis of probability, demographers are trying to find the main factors that influence the growth of the population, and then count the possibility that either another final. Multilayer clutter hypotheses increasing uncertainty of possible errors. "We just can not say exactly what the population at some point in the future. The error is huge, "- highlighted the demographer, Wolfgang Lutz (Wolfgang Lutz) at IIASA Conference in October 2012. Yet, this issue deserves discussion, because the emphasis on monolithic difficulties can lead to overpopulation devilish consequences. How,
for example, in China, with its policy of a single baby.

One of the most problematic issues for fertility in developing countries: it will continue to go on the decline? According to the latest UN projections (published in 2010), the situation in these countries could reach the level of 2.0 kid on the lady. In this case, the world population will reach 10 billion people, and remains at that level. It seems however, we have no reason to believe that the characteristics of fertility will behave in a similar way: a global trend has never found in the charming and arithmetically measured level of 2.1 child per couple.

Quite the opposite. Usually people give birth to or a lot (as in for most of human history, and to this day is in the poorest and most war-torn regions of Africa), or not very many kids. We know how to cope with the excess of birth — rather just give virgins education. Yet, the flip side of the issue so far is the intractable problem of: no one has yet figured out how to boost the birth rate in countries where it began to decline.

Singapore has almost 30 years of trying to provoke the birth of a baby and offering cash payments that can reach up to 13,500 euros per child. And yet with fertility? She still rolled up to the mark of 1.2. As for Sweden, which offered generous financial support of parents, the birth rate initially jumped up, then rolled down, and after many years of hesitation is now at a level of 1.9. This is obviously a lot to Europe, but still not enough to update the generations.

The reason for this inexorable demographic trends can be described in one word: education. First, what do embarked on the path of development of the country, is education of youth, and the first women. All this leads to a significant increase in the amount of labor and property. But at the same time the baby turns into a brake career. "The more you give diplomas to the usually smaller children," — said the director of research programs when IIASA William Butz (William Butz).


In the developed countries, the birth of babies become relevant choice which Any couple making on the basis of personal preference. And maximizing fertility rarely a value to anyone. My wife is a traditional event. I am 46 years old, she was — 39. We have two malehankih baby. We delayed family formation to the last extremity, as willing to invest in the strength of our careers, and to tell the truth, fully enjoy all the benefits that they can offer us.

And if we wanted to have another 1st baby, not the fact that our aging bodies can give us that opportunity. In any case, we have no intention of taking chances. Yes, we love our children, but they need to put a lot of work and a lot of money. Our friends things are exactly the same. Their usually one or two toddlers, and the prospect to have 3 or 4 kids resembles a marathon or transatlantic regatta. It's a beautiful goal, which, nevertheless, asks the tremendous perseverance.

Kind whatsoever, for Homo sapiens such behavior would probably something like a meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs from the face of the Earth. If the population of the earth means to survive, couples with 3 or 4-babies should always be greater than those that decide to grow a total of 1st child or not to have kids in general. The mark of 2.0 on which we have embarked with his wife, it is, of course, a decent respect the effort, but we do not try to jump over his head. What is it — self-interest or the best approach? I am convinced that specifically to take these decisions we will be judged by future generations. If, obviously, they generally will be born …

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