Best Population Size? – The Big Picture English pdf – Spanish pdf

Population growth is a choice, not an inexorable force of nature. If we wish to, we can keep our population at sustainable levels. If we don’t, the forces of biology, technology and economics will keep us growing. Our descendants will not see the stars at night, have the prosperous lifestyles we can aspire to today, know farms and forests, experience wilderness and the incredible other species on the planet.

The Facts:

More than 7 billion people currently inhabit the planet, compared to only 3 billion in 1967. Every year about 135 million people are born and 55 million people die, adding 80 million to our global population. That’s about one United States every 4 years, or 1 billion more every 12 years. Almost half of the global population is under the age of 25 and their decisions during their reproductive years will determine whether we have 6 billion or 14 billion people by 2100.

Each person uses far more land than the few feet they actually occupy. We use cropland to grow food, grazing land for meat and dairy, oceans for fishing and oxygen generation, forests for lumber and carbon sequestration, and developed land for habitation, transportation and commerce. This is our Global Footprint. For an average European or American lifestyle, it is 10-20 acres per person.

Population growth is a root cause of many environmental and social problems:

These range from life-threatening to simply disruptive. They include:

  • Over 1 billion people do not have enough food and safe drinking water.
  • Global warming is disrupting our ecosystems and threatening billions of people with dislocation.
  • Energy sources, from wood to oil, are becoming scarcer and harder to reach or extract.
  • Due to population pressures, people now live in areas that are basically unsafe. Hundred of thousands of people died in 2010-2011 because they lived on floodplains in Pakistan or by the tsunami-prone coast of Japan.These regions were sparsely populated 30 years ago.
  • Population growth shares complex ties to poverty and inequality, exacerbating the gap between the wealthy and the poor, and complicating access to Earth’s finite resources.
  • In the U.S.alone, sprawl destroys 2.2 million acres of farmland, ranchland and forest every year.
  • Americans spend an average of 55 workdays (2200 hours) per year stuck in traffic.

Read more about 26 environmental and social problems due to overpopulation. Feel free tocontact us to suggest more.

The solutions are things we should be doing anyway:

As Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Unlike plagues of the dark ages or contemporary diseases we do not understand, the modern plague of overpopulation is soluble by means we have discovered and with resources we possess. What is lacking is not sufficient knowledge of the solution but universal consciousness of the gravity of the problem and education of the billions who are its victim.”

Here are 5 things that will reverse population growth nationally and worldwide.

  • Empower women and families to plan how many children they want.About 200 million women in the world would prefer to delay having children but do not have access to contraceptives and reproductive healthcare. With modern life-saving medicine has come modern contraception. We need to provide services and accurate information to the people who really want it, and elect politicians who promise to do so both in the United States and worldwide.
  • Education and job opportunities, especially for women. These are critical components for alleviating poverty, gender inequality and overpopulation. Studies have found that when women have more education and job opportunities, they choose to have smaller families, and are able to invest more in each child which helps break the cycle of poverty. Ask our politicians and international organizations to help provide education and jobs worldwide.
  • Awareness of environmental and social cost of overpopulation. Our population is already above a sustainable level, and in many regions well above a safe and prosperous level. As people became aware of this in the 60’s and 70’s many people chose to have smaller families. Kids are truly wonderful, and caring for them is a challenging and rewarding experience. But parents can keep in mind that every person must be cared for within the constraints of the local and global environment.
  • Social norms. Refrain from pressuring people to have children if they are not ready or prefer to remain childless. Some cultures value large families. This often suited a sparsely-populated farming or pastoral region, and sometimes remains as a holdover from those times. Measures can be taken to model and emphasize the benefits of smaller families. Let’s not glorify teen pregnancy with TV shows and tabloid magazines. Additionally in affluent countries, we need to shift away from a culture of excess and unsustainable consumption.
  • Economic forces. Most people take their economic situation into consideration when planning their families. If they do not have housing and jobs they delay starting families. Birthrates rose during the housing bubble begining in 2002, but when the bubble burst and the 2008 recession began, birthrates dropped. Better economic policies in conjunction with slowing population growth worldwide, can help increase global prosperity. Our usual measure of economic progress, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has a built-in tie to population growth (i.e. more people means more economic transactions). This means GDP can rise with population while median household income (and well-being) actually declines! With the wrong measures we set the wrong goals.

Population growth (annual %) in Pakistan

Population growth (annual %) in Pakistan was last measured at 1.80 in 2011, according to the World Bank. Annual population growth rate for year t is the exponential rate of growth of midyear population from year t-1 to t, expressed as a percentage . Population is based on the de facto definition of population, which counts all residents regardless of legal status or citizenship–except for refugees not permanently settled in the country of asylum, who are generally considered part of the population of the country of origin.This page has the latest values, historical data, forecasts, charts, statistics, an economic calendar and news for Population growth (annual %) in Pakistan.

 pakistan population growth annual percent wb data

World Bank Indicators – Pakistan – Population

Causes of Increase in Population

The main factors which have led to the great increase in population are as follows:

(1) Drop in death rate. Due to advances in medical science, the death rate has sharply come down from 28 per thousand population in 1951 to 7.1 per thousand population in 2006-07.

(2) Low standard of living. It is an established fact that people with low income have more children. The poor persons are not afraid of a further fall in their standard of living as a result of large number of children.

(3) Early marriages. In Pakistan, the marriage take place usually between 15 to 22 years of age. The span for reproductively is longer.

(4) Tropical climate. The warm climate where puberty is attained at an early age.

(5) Belief that God is Raziq. Muslim have a firm belief that God gives food to everyone even to an ant living in a stone. So why reduce the size of family?

(6) Source of power. Large family is regarded a power to influence people and subdue persons around them.

(7) illiteracy. Due to lack of education people are not aware of the economic distress caused by high birth rate.

(8) Joint family system. The joint family system though on the decline is also a cause for rapid bringing forth of children.

(9) Existence of polygamy. The existence of polygamy also contribute to the increase in population.

(10) Resistance to population control drive. The population control drive has not been pursed by the Government of Pakistan in right manner due to resistance on ethical grounds.

(11) The influx of refugees. The influx of refugees from India, Afghanistan, is continuing unabated in Pakistan. Pakistan is now a refugee paradise.

(12) Universality of marriage. All men and woman of marriageable age enter into wedlock. as such the birth rate is higher in Pakistan.


1     China  1,398,961,150
2     India    1,277,066,475
3     United States  324,181,033
4     Indonesia  254,677,555
5     Brazil  203,089,009
6     Pakistan  187,032,941
7     Nigeria  181,660,664
8     Bangladesh  159,726,925
9     Russia  142,238,614
10   Japan  126,909,743
11   Mexico  124,727,909
12   Philippines  101,179,278
13   Ethiopia  98,045,470
14   Vietnam  93,096,551
15   Egypt  84,231,894
16   Germany  82,605,658
17   Iran  79,118,589
18   Turkey  76,409,651
19   Congo  70,543,561
20   Thailand  67,356,540

Too Many People?: Population, Immigration, and the Environmental Crisis [pdf]

Too Many People? provides a clear, well-documented, and popularly written refutation of the idea that “overpopulation” is a major cause of environmental destruction, arguing that a focus on human numbers not only misunderstands the causes of the crisis, it dangerously weakens the movement for real solutions.

No other book challenges modern overpopulation theory so clearly and comprehensively, providing invaluable insights for the layperson and environmental scholars alike.

Ian Angus is editor of the ecosocialist journal Climate and Capitalism, and Simon Butler is co-editor of Green Left Weekly.                                                                                 download (1)

The Population Explosion Paperback – April, 1991 by Paul R. Ehrlich (Author), Anne H. Ehrlich (Author)

The Population Explosion vividly describes how the Earth’s population, growing by 95 million people a year, is rapidly depleting the planet’s resources, resulting in famine, global warming, acid rain, and other major problems. Paul and Anne Ehrlich also clearly and concisely point to immediate action that will lessen the threat of ruin and begin to build a more peaceful, sane, and secure world.                                                                             download

[PDF]The words “The Population Bomb,

                                      The Population Bomb is a best-selling book written by Stanford University Professor Paul R. Ehrlich and his wife, Anne Ehrlich(who was uncredited), in 1968. It warned of the mass starvation of humans in the 1970s and 1980s due to overpopulation, as well as other major societal upheavals, and advocated immediate action to limit population growth. Fears of a “population explosion” were widespread in the 1950s and 60s, but the book and its author brought the idea to an even wider audience. The book has been criticized since its publishing for its alarmist tone, and in recent decades for its inaccurate predictions. The Ehrlichs stand by the basic ideas in the book, stating in 2009 that “perhaps the most serious flaw in The Bomb was that it was much too optimistic about the future” and believe that it achieved their goals because “it alerted people to the importance of environmental issues and brought human numbers into the debate on the human future.”