Population Pressures : Features

There are 86 documents in this section.

  • COMMENTARY: The world at 7 billion: can we stop growing now?

    19 July 2011

    With global population expected to surpass 7 billion people this year, the staggering impact on an overtaxed planet is becoming more and more evident. A two-pronged response is imperative: empower women to make their own decisions on childbearing and rein in our excessive consumption of resources.

  • Philippines: surging population, rising troubles

    24 May 2011

    This Commentary, by South East Asia contributing editor Henrylito Tacio, looks at what has happened to the ‘Lost Eden’ of the Philippines - a country where the influential Catholic Church continues to oppose access to modern means of family planning, resulting in high population growth and environmental woes.

  • Water will be the Arab world's next battleground

    27 April 2011

    As popular unrest flares across the Arab world, deeper problems face the region. Population growth and water supply are on a collision course in many countries, raising questions about future hunger, says Lester Brown, writing in the Guardian.

  • Rising food prices raise spectre of Malthus

    16 March 2011

    As the human family approaches 7 billion and as food prices rise, the spectre of Malthus with his warning of widespread famine has reappeared. Here the distinguished demographer, John Bongaarts, argues that the poor of the world are, indeed, vulnerable unless a greater effort is made to meet women’s needs and slow population growth.

  • Ageing: world population faces watershed

    16 January 2011

    The world's population is growing — and ageing. Very low birth rates in developed countries, coupled with birth rate declines in most developing countries, are projected to increase the population ages 65 and over to the point in 2050 when it will be 2.5 times that of the population ages 0-4. This is an exact reversal of the situation in 1950.

  • Making the population-poverty connection

    3 November 2010

    The 21st century began on an inspiring note: the United Nations set a goal of reducing the share of the world's population living in extreme poverty by half by 2015. By early 2007 the world looked to be on track to meet this goal, but as the economic crisis unfolds and the outlook darkens, the world will have to intensify its poverty reduction effort.

  • Failed states - including Yemen - face a demographic trap

    28 January 2010

    This week's meeting of 21 states to discuss the future of Yemen in view of the growing threat of terrorism emanating from that poor country was meant "to focus on a comprehensive approach to the root causes - political, social, economic - of Yemen's problems" according to British Foreign Secretary David Milliband. Indeed, at its conclusion, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that Yemen had been "brutally honest about the problems it faces," including widespread illiteracy and unemployment, high population growth and a dwindling water supply. This acknowledgement of the shaky demographic and environmental underpinings of 'failed states' is timely as Lester Brown points out in this review of a growing phenomenon.

  • Population growth steady as climate heats up

    1 January 2010

    Throughout the first decade of the 21st century, the world has continued to add the equivalent of a new Germany, or nearly 80 million people, every year to the planet's human population . And as the number of people of fertile age in the world continues to grow, there is no sign that annual additions will soon start to decline. Despite this (and changes in the climate which threaten future food supplies) rich country support for family planning has been cut in half. Robert Engelman tells the story and questions whether, under present policies, we will reach 2050 with 9 billion people - or many more.

  • POPULATION COMMENTARY: A low cost, low risk strategy to help curb climate change

    16 December 2009

    Trillions of mirrors launched into space to deflect the sun's rays. A massive fleet of ships churning up sea spray to increase Earth's cloud cover. As political responses to climate change limp along, scientists currently are debating these and other geoengineering schemes to stabilize the climate. Yet, as many have observed, such schemes carry formidable costs - and risks.

  • COMMENTARY: Population, gender, and climate change

    26 November 2009

    Improving access to family planning services and promoting sexual equality are a priority in dealing with climate change says Karen Hardee in an editorial for the Britsh Medical Journal, reproduced here.