The aspect of population growth has been a major concern for many nations of the world. Since the age of industrial revolution, the world’s population has been increasing significantly sparking concern among different localities. This is especially because global population growth led to the emancipation of critical developmental problems issues, which have been a common in the development arena. Several solutions have been proposed with an aim of addressing the arising problems. In order to propose a feasible solution towards global population growth, it is important to analyze the impacts, effects, and consequences in an amicable manner.
Impacts of Global Population Growth
The current global population growth rate has impacted negatively on the sustainability of the ecosystem. This is because due to the current trends, the resources that were previously endowed by the ecosystem have been diminished significantly. This is especially as a result of the changing patterns of different populations on a regional or geographical perspective. Stephen Carpenter remarks, “There is also a growing recognition of the fact that how population is distributed across age groups, urban and rural regions, living arrangements, and geographic regions affects consumption patterns and therefore ecosystem impacts” (176). Moreover, the typical spread of the population in a particular ecosystem has significant impact on the manner in which decisions are undertaken regarding ecosystem resources allocated for a specific population size. Hence, it is important to note that ecosystem impacts are partly moderated by the resources available to individuals and especially how they allocate them based on the economic, cultural, sociopolitical, and technical relationships, which are required to convert raw materials provided by the ecosystem into feasible value that can be used by humans (Carpenter 176).
Effects of Global Population Growth
Global population growth has led to the a significant increment in the exploitation of the current potential of the natural resources, for instance, water resources are unable to support the growing needs. This is especially because availability of such critical natural resources like water is constantly becoming inaccessible due to interference with its regeneration capacity. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment remarks, “Population growth and economic development have driven per capita levels of water availability down from 11,300 to about 5,600 cubic meters person per year between 1960 and 2000” (27). Therefore, this suggests that global population growth increases the pressure placed on the currently increasing resources meant for a defined population number.
Consequences of Global Population Growth
The global population growth rate has led to the development of varying consequences on account of population numbers found in certain geographical entities especially focusing on changes seen in developing fertility trends. In fact, analysts have projected that the global population growth will take up a downward trend as the years progress. Batini Nicoletta, McKibbin Warwick, and Callen Tim support this hypothesis by stating that “By 2050, global population growth is projected to be only 0.25 percent a year, compared with 1.25% at present. The population in a number of countries is actually expected to decline over the next 50 years, including over 30 percent in some central and eastern European countries, by 22 percent in Italy, and by 14 percent in Japan. However, its effects continue to be manifested in various parts of the world. This therefore indicates the impact on fertility trends is on a down trend in certain regions, which could be as a result of preferences for smaller families. However, despite there is still a major challenge in projecting future needs of a nation due to the fluctuating trends observed.
Nicoletta, Warwick, and Tim further admit that “In developing countries particularly in Africa and the Middle East, but also parts of Asia population growth although slowing, will remain robust, reflecting their higher fertility rates” (6).
Solution to Controlling Global Population Growth
Various proposals have been fronted to control the impact resulting from population growth. Through significant research it has been possible to select some of the most feasible ways of controlling population growth. The implementation of a threefold measure would serve to introduce speedy and effective mechanisms, and these include instituting measures of reducing birth rate, family welfare/family planning programs, and formulation of national population policies (Deepashree 4-12).
First, reducing birth rates would serve to limit the chances of future population explosions, which have had negative effects on the ecosystem. Ordinarily, every surviving birth implies an additional stress on the existing ecosystem resources. Hence, by reducing the birth rates to significant numbers there is a high probability of eliminating the constant stresses on the current resources. Deepashree observes that birth rates could be reduced by spreading education, increasing female wage employment, provision of old age social security and pension, and reduction in infant mortality rates (4-12). The provision of social security at old age, for example, reduces the need for parents to have more children in the hope that they will support them in the future.
Secondly, the implementation of family planning programs entail the application of significant approaches aimed at reducing chances of unplanned or unwanted pregnancies, manageable family sizes, and better child spacing. This can be achieved by persuading people to adopt small family sizes, enhancing availability of family planning various methods, promoting female education and employment, encouraging females to delay marriage, and provision of better nutrition, health, and immunization programs (Deepashree 4-13). Enhancing availability of family planning options enables poor populations to access these services hence avoid unwanted pregnancies and better child spacing to reduce an overburden on natural resource like water.
Thirdly, the formulation of national population policies will lead to the identification, definition, and implementation of proper structures targeting arising national population growth concerns. For instance, policies should be formulated with proper consideration of the contextual differences existing in different geographical localities, especially with regard to availability of resources and existing population numbers. Policies will enable the achievement of access to information, fertility regularization services and contraceptives, and promote the existence of a small family norm (Deepashree 4-14). The promotion of a small family norm, for instance, will enable many nations facing population growth concerns to attain desired replacement levels for the existing total fertility rates. However, in as much as national policies are advantageous, caution needs to be taken to safeguard desired domestic population numbers capable of supporting a country’s growth potential with regard to economic prosperity. For example, critical concerns have recently been expressed in Japan, Sweden, Russia, Canada and other northern parts regarding the constantly declining domestic human population (MgBeoji 70).
Despite the fact that several solutions have been proposed with an aim of addressing the arising problems associated with global population growth, designing a proper and feasible solution towards it demands an analysis of the impacts, effects, and consequences of this problem in our society. It has been observed that global population growth has an overarching effect on the existing ecosystem resources. In addition, the impact on the natural resource potential is equally overwhelming, and similarly consequences affecting the existing fertility trends. MgBeoji observes that “population control is so complex politically and economically that mere reduction of numbers per se would not address the issue” (70). The solutions formulated are therefore of a holistic nature and focus on instituting measures of reducing birth rate, formulation of national population policies, and family welfare/family planning programs.