Demography is one of the most important components of sociological knowledge, both theoretical and empirical. In empirical researches, the demographic component is lex non scripta! Today the main problem of the science of demography and all world community facing with – overpopulation of Earth. The subject of an overpopulation at first glance is rather clear and simple but not everything is so simple, and it is necessary to understand it. Usually, it comes down to several aspects: 1) the lack of space on the planet; 2) lack of resources; 3) lack of food; 4) global warming.
However, unfortunately, demographic dynamics, in particular, birth rate, has the descending character. The last six decades there was a radical decrease in birth rate worldwide. If we take into consideration the 10 most populated countries, that, as you know are China, India, USA, Indonesia, Brazil, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Russia and Japan (internetworldstats.com) – none of them did not have a jump in births in this period. In China in 1970, the population growth was 2.80%, in 2015, this figure is only 0.49% over the last four decades, the birth rate in countries such as China and India has significantly decreased. Currently, 60 percent of the world's population lives in the area of latent depopulation. The coefficient of birth rate is lower than the figure of 2,1 children which is minimum for demographic stagnation. Thus, we live not even in the stagnation period. Unfortunately, the growth of the world population, which is really going on, happens due to the created inertia (The World Factbook).
Growth of the population is in many respects connected with such factor as life expectancy growth, today average life expectancy in the world — 65 years. The growth of the population on the planet happens generally due to 30 countries of Africa and Asia. Unfortunately, there is no prognosis, even on the medium-term prospect that would promise growth of the birth rate, it continues to fall. In the most occupied countries, it reached the historically unprecedented minimum. In Japan, for example, the natural increase of the population is −1.31 %. Respectively, there cannot be fears about an overpopulation; the situation has the opposite character (The World Factbook).
However, consideration of the Earth population question from such party is not favorable because it takes away a geopolitical trump from developed countries, which are very afraid of their geopolitical competitors strengthening. They are disturbed with the growth of the population, but with the growth of the population outside of the developed countries, and all discussion is reduced to the discussion of the population growth in the developing states.
For a deeper understanding of the overpopulation, issue the arguments for this thesis should be dismantled. The first argument about the lack of space, of course, is false. There are calculations of the maximum number of the world's population, belonging to the Romanian physics Viorel Badescu, according to which “the Earth could sustain 1.3 million billion people without overheating” (Ravilious, 2005). This is more than the current numbers in 200 thousand times. Similar calculations did the British scientist John Fremlin in 1960, he announced the figure of 60 quadrillion people. For an example to bring together all people of the planet in one place and in at one time there will be enough circle with a radius of 80 kilometers. If we consider the territory of a particular state, then it is quite a comfortable stay at the one of the 50 US states - such as Texas, and if you take for example Australia, then each person will have more than 1,000 square meters.
As for the thesis about the lack of food, the facts speak for themselves. In the world annually thrown out approximately half a billion tons of food, suitable for consumption. These are signs of planetary abundance. Nevertheless, it occurs not everywhere generally in Europe and the USA. Therefore, all appeals about the reduction of consumption have to be addressed only to super developed countries. Discussion about overpopulation in general is large because developed countries do not want to deny themselves in their usual standards of living. There are estimates of Indian economists who say that it would be enough food resources and climatic opportunities of India, to feed the entire population of the Earth. The starving people are generally concentrated in the countries in which there are wars. Africa is known as a starving continent, but not because of overpopulation, but only because of wars, chaos, and dictatorships. Two-thirds of the hungry live in seven countries: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, China, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Pakistan (Policy Briefs). “These situations are especially dire for populations in Uganda, Nigeria, and Bangladesh, which will double and, in some cases, even triple over the next 40 years” (Effects of Human Overpopulation). You will not find a single country where there is hunger, including episodic, which is not at war or any catastrophe. Therefore, the accusations of people that they overpopulate their country and cause hunger is meaningless. Using modern technological resources, we have the ability to feed everyone and even produce a surplus. Another process, which prevents the satisfaction of food needs, - an aggressive policy of the major food companies. They seeded the fertile land with monocultures thereby depleting the soil.
Lack of resources. In the 1970s, the Club of Rome in its reports warned about the depletion of world’s resources - oil, gas, tungsten, nickel, tin, and others. Then he gave his prediction: that in a few decades and in some cases even less these minerals will be depleted. However, these deadlines have passed, and during that, time consumption has only increased and the forecast for use of these natural resources became higher. Over the last decades new stocks were reconnoitered, there were many cases of transition to alternative technologies, and thus term for which the exhaustion will occur was removed for 300 at least years. It should also take into account the fact that the resources of the Arctic are not fully explored. Therefore, it is frightening forecasts are rather conditional. Besides, it is possible to refuse oil for a long time and in certain cases use more alternative sources. However, it is unprofitable to multinational corporations. American economist Julian Simon made a bet with Paul Ehrlich, author of the book "The Population Bomb." They argued over the forecast change in the value of some of the most common metals in the next 10 years. In a result in 10 years, Simon won the bet, because all the metals, on which they dispute, significantly declined in price. Earth has much more resources than we can even imagine and it will be enough of them for everyone.
Another argument put forward in this debate is the theme of global warming. However, as far as can be judged according to climatologists, global warming is a cyclical process. He had a place in history and will take place in the future. In fact, the temperature of the planet has not increased and remains at the same level. Certainly, human impact on the environment is present. However, there are no serious reasons for the nowadays hysteria over the global warming issue. The commercial component is also present at this question under the pretext of global warming new standards of production are constantly offered, and transition to these standards makes instant high profit for these or those companies serving this transition.
The policy of certain countries was aimed at reducing fertility: in Peru during the presidency of Alberto Fujimori, the military dictator held a mass campaign of sterilization of men and women, in India, sterilization continues, in China spread very widely.
Do not trust all scary forecasts of futurologists who frighten us by baizes that everything will be bad and terrible. The person can live in the big community that outgrew its natural borders, each resident of the modern megalopolis proves. If we will use rational all benefits of scientific and technical progress, the answer to the question "Whether the Overpopulation Threatens Us" will be categorical "No"! In our time, humanity is facing such pressing global issues of our time, they threatening the very existence of civilization and even the life on our planet, but overpopulation is not one of them.
Effects of Human Overpopulation. (2013). Everythingconnects.org. Web. 21 July 2015.
Retrieved from: http://www.everythingconnects.org/overpopulation-effects.html
Policy Briefs. (2010). Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Web. 21
July 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.fao.org/economic/es-policybriefs/briefs-detail/en/?no_cache=1&uid=45361
Ravilious, Kate. (2005). “Debate heats up over Earth's population”. Theguardian.com. Web.
21 July 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.theguardian.com/science/2005/dec/27/uknews
The World Factbook. (2014). Central Intelligence Agency. Web. 21 July 2015. Retrieved
The World Population and the Top Ten Countries with the Highest Population. (2015).
Internetworldstats.com. Web. 21 July 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats8.htm