Social Impact Of Population Growth Essay

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Population growth is emerging as on the most contentious issues facing society today. What makes the issue so contentious is its overall impact on human behavior and its implications for worldwide economic develop. Until now, economic development was primarily measured by GDP growth. Gross Domestic Product is simply the value of all goods and services produced within a given country. This figure is in turn measured by both the growth in the labor force and the growth in labor force productivity. Outside of China, little concern has been given to the growth of the labor force which is directly correlated to population growth. Instead, focus was heavily placed on productivity gains thorough innovations in technology and efficiencies. Increases in capital investment, capital efficiency, technology and the like were the focus of government intervention. Now however, the focus has been placed on overall population growth, particularly for developing economies. Essentially, the population, if left unchecked, will require more resources than can sustain it. Natural resources such as water, wood, agriculture, oil, cotton, and more will be quickly be exhausted. Once this point is reached in regard to population growth, it will be difficult to revert back to prior standards. As such, certain checks and balances must be implemented in order to avoid eventual disaster as it relates to population growth in developing countries (Abarbanel, 1950).
To begin, population growth directly impacts green house gases and their overall impact on the economy. Greenhouse gases are essentially elements in the atmosphere that trap heat. As more gases are produced, the planet steadily heats. Once heated, adverse consequences can occur. These consequences can include damage to our ecosystem, rising water level, higher frequency of natural disasters, and other forms of destruction to the planet. As mentioned in the introduction, population growth is highly correlated with economic activity. When consumers feel confident about their prospects, they feel more secure in their ability to have and foster children. This in term creates demand for more products, goods, and services that contribute to global warning. For example, consumers will experience heavier use of vehicles to travel to various destinations for their children. Homes will require more food and energy to maintain. More natural resources such as oil, cotton, and other products will be consumed more frequently. This population growth therefore directly contributes to global warning as many of it causes are increased by higher population density. Carbon Dioxide for example accounts for nearly 80% of all greenhouse gas emission in the world. It typically enters the atmosphere through burning of fossil fuels. Burning of fossil fuels, as mentioned above is heavily dependent on economic growth and by correlation, population growth. Coal, Natural Gas, and Oil products all create chemical reactions that produce carbon dioxide. Cars, powerplants, certain business establishments and households all create...…a hoax (Barrett, 1971).

From an economic perspective, emissions can create both opportunity and depression. High emission standards, particularly for transportation firm can be very costly. First, companies, must invest in more expensive vehicles that will ultimately lower profits. Companies must invest heavily in research and development to manufacture these vehicles that adhere to governmental standards. This could potentially adversely affect companies that already operate with very thin margin to begin with. With lower margins, the company may be forced to fire personnel, lower dividend distributions to shareholders, or cut certain benefits. Each will have direct impacts on the community and key stakeholders. Likewise, large opportunities will also exist economically for companies that can grow and leverage the governmental standards. Electric vehicle manufacturers, renewable power generators, recycling companies, and other businesses can be established. These businesses can in turn employ individuals, pay high wages, and ultimately enhance the economic value of the developing country (Boykoff, 2004).

Thirdly, as it relates to controlling the population, on an extreme level, developing countries can implement birth control measures to limit the population growth. Other than through governmental intervention, it will be difficult to implement population controls.

In conclusion, global warming, greenhouse gases, and population growth are all interrelated. Each works in a symbiotic relationship that can increase greenhouse gas emissions or lower them. Through policies, government intervention and societal change, the effects of each can be properly mitigated…

Sources Used in Documents:


1. Abarbanel, Albert, and Thomas McCluskey (1950). "Is the World Getting Warmer?" Saturday Evening Post, 1 July, pp. 22-23, 57-63.

2. Abbot, Charles G., and F.E. Fowle, Jr. (1908). "Income and Outgo of Heat from the Earth, and the Dependence of Its Temperature Thereon." Annals of the Astrophysical Observatory (Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC) 2: 159-176

3. Andreae, Meinrat O. (1996). "Raising Dust in the Greenhouse." Nature 380: 389-90

4. Barrett, Earl W. (1971). "Climate Change." (Letter) Science 171: 983.

5. Boykoff, Maxwell T., and Jules M. Boykoff (2004). "Balance as Bias: Global Warming and the US Prestige Press." Global Environmental Change 14: 125-36

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