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Planet could be unrecognizable by 2050

Posted on Tuesday, 22 February, 2011 | Comment icon 57 comments

Image credit: NASA

By Scáthach, Staff News Writer

A growing population relying on fewer natural resources could make Earth unrecognizable in 40 years.

As the Earth's population grows and our demand on the planet's diminishing resources increases as well, scientists believe that by 2050 our planet will be unrecognizable. We will consume more in the next 40 years than we have in the last 8,000. The solution, they believe, is to have better family planning.

"The United Nations has predicted the global population will reach seven billion this year, and climb to nine billion by 2050, "with almost all of the growth occurring in poor countries, particularly Africa and South Asia," said John Bongaarts of the non-profit Population Council."

  View: Full article |  Source: Yahoo! News

  Discuss: View comments (57)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #48 Posted by BigfootBuster on 28 February, 2011, 10:48
How much land does it take to hold 9 billion people? Consider the nation of France. It has about 211,209 square miles of area. One square mile has 5280 * 5280 = 27.9 million square feet. France has a total of about 5,9 trillion square feet, enough to give each person of the earth 654,75 square feet. If we housed people in families of four in simple two-level buildings (8 people per building, one family of four per level), each building could be on a lot of over 5238 square feet. (Of course, I've ignored that fact that many parts would be unsuitable for dwelling places, and I've neglect... [More]
Comment icon #49 Posted by Br Cornelius on 28 February, 2011, 11:55
What about food, water and energy. Footprint is not just about how much space your feet take up. Br Cornelius
Comment icon #50 Posted by BigfootBuster on 28 February, 2011, 12:28
and water production. The problems we got with food now, is nothing to due with overpopulation. It's more a question about politics. The energy problem is a completely different story.
Comment icon #51 Posted by IamsSon on 28 February, 2011, 20:42
Given that US farmers are paid not to grow crops, that we are allowing fertile land in California which by itself could feed billions because of the potential impact on a small fish, that incredibly fertile farmland in Mexico is underused due to politics, not to mention other countries with the same issue, the issue of hunger is political, not due to actual need. Many of the counties where people are going hungry are doing so because the countries' rulers steal the aid sent by Western democracies.
Comment icon #52 Posted by Br Cornelius on 28 February, 2011, 21:19
The actual amount of productive land per capita of the worlds population is about 2ha (4 acres). That has to provide all that we need. This doesn't account for the fact that we share those 2ha with all the rest of the animals/plants on the planet. Water is a rare commodity in the places were agriculture is most intensive, and the Californian aquifers are falling at an alarming rate - once they are gone - the productive lands are no longer productive. Soil erosion is robbing the world of about a million acres of productive land a year, and the replacement agricultural land is mostly virgi... [More]
Comment icon #53 Posted by jesspy on 7 March, 2011, 10:57
Intresting then we could move frm country to country in big convoys every few years. Return the land in france for re-forresting. Then while we live in germany sections of population can go produce food in other countries. Farm fish in the seas etc. It sounds nice. But the disease would be bad with everyone living in the same area and if a natural diaster happened. Its a good concept but I doubt people woul dwant to do it.
Comment icon #54 Posted by 27vet on 28 March, 2011, 6:22
Overpopulation will have worse consequences than climate change. Now, let me see how I can make money out of that, hmmm...
Comment icon #55 Posted by lp21why on 28 March, 2011, 6:37
It's not that one is worse than the other, they will work hand in hand. Imagine an extra billion people on Earth, with less land available for agriculture/living space. Not only will population density rise in areas that are still habitable, but food scarcity will rise as we need more intensive farming practices on land we can use.
Comment icon #56 Posted by Alienated Being on 30 March, 2011, 11:53

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