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We Must Stop Overpopulation and Pollution of Our Environment Essay

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We Must Stop Overpopulation and Pollution of Our Environment


Once we humans hit on the idea of agriculture about 10,000 years ago, we had a means for exponentially increasing our population. Even as mere 2-legged, wingless creatures, humans could expand to cover the world, and pull from the earth nutrients to support this massive layer of people. The population increase has continued, and there are disagreements as to if and when the increase will end. The number of people on this earth is the indirect problem; more directly, the problem is that 6.3 billion people need a lot of food to survive, and the earth can only support so much. The industrial character of our societies on this earth means that our existence is give and take: we take minerals from the soil and from the depths of the earth, and trees and water from the surface, and we give back all sorts of wastes.

Whether or not our enormous population is actually overpopulation, and thus a problem, is debated. Some theories predict futures of doom, in which our population is finally stabilized by widespread death, while others believe that our population will stabilize before the situation is anywhere near that morbid. (Southwick; Dolan) Whatever the population will do in the future, the fact remains that the amount of people we have on the earth now have a tremendous impact on the environment, in terms of both human actions and the space that humans take up. (Southwick) Furthermore, a large amount of people creates a demand for a large amount of energy and products, and the methods we use to fulfill the demands heavily impact the environment as well. While some of the problems of industrialization have been widely noticed and some have been solved, many remain unrec...


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...
Back to the earth I screamed and
no one listened to me
Back to the earth I lived and they
all followed
Come and see my world

-Rusted Root, "Back to the Earth"

Sources

Dolan, Edwin G., Ch. 5 from "TANSTAAFL: The Economic Strategy for Environmental Crisis" 1974, pp. 55-72.

Fahey, D. W., Ravishankara, A. R. "ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE:Enhanced: Summer in the Stratosphere" Science, 1999, vol. 285, pp. 208-210.

Hansen, J., Ruedy, R., Sato, M., Lo, K., "Global Warming Continues" Science 2002, vol. 295, p. 275

Kerr, Richard, "A Brighter Look for Good Ozone" Science, 2002, vol. 297, pp. 1623-1624.

Southwick, Charles H., Ch. 15 from "Global Ecology in Human Perspective" Oxford Univ. Press, 1996, pp. 159-182.

text of Kyoto Protocol found at http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/convkp/kpeng.html; date found at http://www.eia.doe.gov/oiaf/kyoto/kyotorpt.html


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