According to United Nations projections, the population growth will mainly be fueled by some of the poorest countries in Africa.
Is the world really overpopulated, or are humans just utilizing resources at an unsustainable rate in irresponsible fashion? Debate persists, but what is known is that by the year 2100, the population of humans on planet Earth is expected to be at an all-time high of 11.2 billion.
Reported by Upriser, the number of people on Earth is expected to grow faster than previously expected, reaching 8.5 billion in just the next 15 years. According to United Nations projections released last Wednesday, the population growth will mainly be fueled by some of the poorest countries in Africa.
It’s difficult to tamper the ever-increasing population when low-income, poverty-stricken areas lack adequate birth control methods and complementary education. Because of this, Africa is expected to account for more than half of the world’s population growth through 2050, to 9.7 from 7.3 billion today. Nigeria, presently the seventh-largest country by population, is expected to surpass the United States and become the world’s third largest by 2050. In this time, 28 African countries could more than double in size population-wise, and 10 – including Angola, Somalia, and Uganda – will more than quintuple. India is also expected to surpass China and become the most populous country by 2022.
It may be difficult sometimes to think beyond this year, or even the next five, but these projections certainly cause one to ponder their contribution and/or the necessity to produce offspring.
Said John Wilmoth, the director of the population division in the U.N.’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs:
“The concentration of population growth in the poorest countries presents its own set of challenges, making it more difficult to eradicate poverty and inequality, to combat hunger and malnutrition and to expand educational enrollment and health systems.”
“This is not good news,” said John Bongaarts, a vice president of the Population Council, an international nongovernmental research organization based in New York. “In the poorest countries, fertility rate declines have slowed down and in some cases are even stalling.”
Furthermore, in poverty-stricken areas expected to experience a massive increase in population, it will not be unexpected for citizens to migrate to urban locations. This pattern could present problems of its own, as in affluent locations, diseases of Westernized living are becoming more and more prevalent, and may be difficult to curb because high-sugar, high-fat foods are cheaper and easier to attain for those on a budget.
“The growth in urban areas is going to be astonishing,” Bongaarts said. “Most of these people are going to end up in slums. That’s not good news.”
But don’t let this news get you down. There is some positive news to report. At present, the AIDS epidemic is coming under control, and infant mortality is declining. In addition, some African countries, such as Ethiopia and Rwanda, have successfully expanded access to contraceptives and family planning education. These contributions will go a long way in helping to educate people and provide options to consciously create and raise families.
As medical care continues to advance, life expectancy is also expected to increase in the poorest countries. The U.N. projects show that those living in poverty-stricken locations may experience an average of 10 years extension in life.
By the end of this century, however, there will be very small numbers of labor force participants to support the booming numbers of elderly, therefore it is essential as the population grows this inevitable concern be planned for.
The report says that future workers and parents need health care, education, and employment opportunities to “help build a brighter future for their countries.”
Education is definitely the first step, and raising awareness is the second. Share this article and comment your thoughts below.
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