Population Growth: Human Impact on the Environment 

More humans have been added to the world’s population in the past 40 years than in the previous three million (Hunter 12). Amidst of 1960 to 1999 the population density had doubled, increasing from three billion to six billion bodies (Hunter 1999). During those years, better medical facilities, technological advancement in fertility treatment and the declination within the mortality rates, had the population evolve with high-rise of growth.

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The elevation of population demographic may not be the fundamental cause of environmental degradation, yet it can convolute and intensify natural dilemmas. The influence depend on the adaptability in which individuals and society can react to expanding population tension. This adaptability, in return, is contingent on the adequacy of the markets and governments, in addition to the subculture and the country’s degree of financial advancement. In nations in which those variables advance quick and adaptable response to population alter financial improvement can be economical. Nevertheless, in countries where these amenities are unimplemented and conditions are of low-income developing nations, population growth will lead to environmental degradation. In all-important respect, a justifiable significance between population growth and environmental problems are deforestation, water quantity and quality, and the degradation of land and soil resources.

To comprehend the issue, more people should be aware of the ultimate requirements as the population’s vital statistics grow. Lori M. Hunter, a professor of sociology, has argued that fulfilling the expanding needs of the society requires, “some form of land-use change-to provide for the expansion of food production through forest clearing, to intensify production on already cultivated land, or to develop the infrastructure necessary to support increasing human numbers” (1999). A common process labeled, deforestation, is addressed to the predicament. The results were noted as 50 to 100 species, part of the tropical rainforest, were slowly disappearing each day (Butler 2019), while soil erosion only escalated causing extreme flooding that many villagers at nearby areas were forced to endure (Hunter 1999). Not to mention the analysis, carried out by Melissa Mayer a freelance science writer and editor, that during the 20th century the fourfold population growth, CO2 emissions increased twelvefold. As greenhouse gases increase, so do climate patterns, ultimately resulting in the long-term pattern called climate change (Mayer 2018). In essence, allowing the sequences of gaining and suffering, as the demographics increase and most lands are being occupied, coupled with water scarcity and pollution, it is inevitable for the opposition of our actions to oppose us at one point.

Who has suffered most from these water contaminations? The people. As the society grows in number, the global water consumptions rose sixfold between 1900 and 1995 (Hunter 1999). Nonetheless, activities such as waste disposal from industrialize areas, oil spill, direct deposits of pollutants, overfishing, and significantly more, causes destruction to water sources that direct to a reduction in the diversity of marine life. This judgment justifies the severity of the people’s health- mainly in underdeveloped countries, the reduction of economic productivity (e.g. declination of fisheries), and the origins of serious diseases on a massive scale in developing countries like India (“Effects of Population Growth on our Environment” 2014). In order to refrain from further predicaments, the Market Based Instruments were applied as a form of environmental taxes that include subsidies for pollution abatement equipment for air and water resources, regulating authorities has also laid down technical standards and regulations and charges on air, water and land pollutants (“Effects of Population Growth on our Environment” 2014). Furthermore, appropriate policies and management should be put into consideration.

In addition to this, the degradation of land and soil resources may perhaps be the foundation of deforestation, poor farming practices, over-irrigation, soil mining, and over-fertilization. The antecedent of these elements is again, population growth. As Hunter put it, “Converting land to agricultural use can lead to soil erosion, and the chemicals often used in fertilizers can also degrade soil” (1999). Not only does it cause physical geographical destruction but it also adds to the urgency of natural catastrophes, harm human health, and may cause serious diseases (“Effects of Population Growth on our Environment” 2014). Therefore, appropriate policies and management, secure land ownership, and conclusively lowering the rate of the population growth could help reduce pressure on minor terrains.

Because of pressure from the substantial consequences, country governments have been searching for possible solutions to reduce the rapid expansion of the population. According to United Nations estimates, 80 percent of the world population in 1999 lived in developing nations (Hunter 12). Hence, the government should extend family planning and proper education, especially to these underdeveloped nations (“Effects of Population Growth on our Environment” 2014). To emphasize, take China’s birth planning program, the “One-Child” policy; is established to limit the great majority of family units in the Republic of China to one child each. In fact, knowledge of sexual reproduction health should be put into consideration and valued to those of poor understanding. Moreover, the founder of Dandelion Africa, Wendo Aszed, lived in Kenya to witness the country’s living-conditions firsthand. She emphasizes her solutions:

If we don’t do something soon, I don’t know if there will be any resources left. There’s pressure on the environment, especially because we use charcoal, we use firewood. So, the larger the families, the more we consume. There’s no provision to plant trees because trees cost money. So if an average family, one parent probably earns maybe $2 at most a day. What will be the priority for the family? It will not be buying trees to plant. So, what we are seeing in Kenya, and in the recent statistics is Kenya is becoming a desert. Communities are beginning to realize that it’s better and easier to have a smaller family because the ecosystem of the community works better. (Aszed 00:02:17–00:03:07)

Aszed explains that throughout the population growth, communities in impoverished areas have learned the consequences and are taking it into deliberation for immediate action. Overall, to terminate further issues from arising it is up to the government and the community to serve fundamental conditions for this predicament.

All things considered, the human population has a powerful effect on the environment. Although, the relationship between population dynamics and environmental degradation is a complex matter of sequences and may as well be interlinked, that on the off chance that not one is address the other one will never be address either. Deforestation, water contamination and pollution, and land degradation in the form of desertification and soil erosion are the physical proof of the repercussions of human actions. Henceforth, these repercussions are the fundamental inducement of many societies’ adversities. For instance, water contaminations were the cause of typhoid fever that affected large-scale provinces. As citizens concerned about the upbringing of further analytical consequences, the society-as a whole- should reciprocate with better solutions to end the sequences of gaining and suffering and to bring both economic and environmental benefits to the country.

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Population Growth: Human Impact On The Environment . (2021, Mar 29). Retrieved June 29, 2022 , from
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