Overpopulation needs immediate attention
The world's population right now is exploding.
The United Nations predicted that from 5.3 billion people today, the world's population is expected to swell to 9.2 billion in 2050, assuming that global fertility among women will drop from 2.05 to 2. Worldwide, the population is growing at 75 million people per year. From 2000 to 2005, global fertility stood at 2.65 children per woman, although this figure is projected to decline to 2.05 per woman.
Culprit? Rapid population growth, which if not properly addressed could spell disastrous effects to many developing economies, whose budgets are already strained by the big expenditures on basic services. And the problem is more aggravated by rampant graft and corruption where some government officials divert funds that are meant to alleviate poverty thus adding more miseries to many developing countries, especially in Asia, South America and Africa.
Aware of this problem, the United Nations led the way in implementing effective population and development measures to its member countries. One of its most controversial projects was the family planning project, whose primordial objective was to educate the public, especially poor couples, on the importance of having a few children to raise using appropriate birth control methods, in accordance with the accepted tenets of the Churches, a sector that is very vocal when it comes to birth control methods, especially on pills that are used for abortions.
However, demographic studies showed that most of the rapid population growth occurs in developing countries, where poverty is most rampant. Besides, there is a lot of restrictions in a democracy where culture and religion double as villains so that effective implementation even of natural family planning methods are taken as contrary to accepted norms and practices. But in developed countries, couples are given the right to choose what contraceptive methods are appropriate for them.
This is not the case in most developing countries where the Churches intervene in the affairs of the government so that implementation of family planning methods is not that easy and effective. And convincing concerned couples, some of them lack education, the importance of family planning becomes an ordeal considering they come from different cultural backgrounds, especially for those in remote places, where transportation and infrastructures are not available. Family planning motivators are required to visit these couples at home on foot instead, discounting risks along the way.
Thomas Malthus, an English demographer and political economist, had argued in his study "An Essay on the Principle of Population" that if the population growth is unrestricted, the possible outcome would be that food grown on agricultural lands would become scarce thus causing starvation.
When poor couples have more than enough children to raise, the problems on how to feed, cloth and educate them crop up. When things get out of hand, most of these malnourished children are seen on busy streets begging from motorists. And whatever coins they got are mostly used to buy food and other things they need for the day. This cycle has become a concern for the government agencies tasked to make begging illegal by enacting an anti-mendicancy law. With most of them without a livelihood, and living in shacks in slum areas in the cities, what can we expect but eyesores and a burden for the concerned local governments.
To avoid this, Malthus had suggested for the application of population control through moral restraint. Although, he did not specify as to what birth control methods are best for use. Moral restraint means that family planning recipients are given the option to use what is necessary and appropriate for them, given the wide variety of artificial contraceptives now readily available in the markets. But the problems begin when the materials and paraphernalia used in family planning are for sale considering that some couples in the rural areas are financially hard up. Instead of buying these birth control pills, the couple would instead opt to use the money for food. Of course, some contraceptives are given free to those who are interested to join the program. But these are not sustained for unknown reasons.
Could it be that the funds intended for the family program was diverted to other purposes by local government officials who have a hand in decision-making on matters related to health? This is always the case in far-flung areas in the developing world where the mayors and governors call the shots. No matter how you put the system in place, it doesn't seem to work out because there are people who intervene for political interests.
Most of the people in developing countries are expected to suffer from illnesses, lack of adequate sanitation, hunger, and extreme poverty. While those in developed countries will stay at 1.2 billion people, who have both a diminishing population and an abundant food supply.
Between 2005 and 2050, nine countries will account half of the world's projected population increase. These include India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, United States, Ethiopia and China. Likewise, the population of 51 countries or areas, including Germany, Italy, Japan and most of the successor States of the former Soviet Union, is expected to be lower in 2050 than in 2005.
Demographers said that the population outcome after the 21st century range from 2 billion to 12 billion people. But there existence is being looked at to be characterized by sufferings due to limited resources and widespread famine, a phenomenon that is now being experienced in most parts of Africa.
They argued that many earlier civilizations have collapsed due to environmental problems, and warns of current environmental problems. However, he also notes many situations in which humans have managed their natural resources well. Although, some population experts argued that the problems brought about by overpopulation can now be stymied by modern medical and technological discoveries.
Issues affecting overpopulation has been a long standing problem that drew international attention. Yet the chances for these population measures being effectively carried out by countries that need them most remain a hard battle. If we did see little progress, blame it on the way people and local governments entertain the family planning programs. For the couples, their mind sets are focused on other priorities other than family planning itself. Having said all the nuances of population control, the underlying factors that could play a big role in slowing down the growth are discipline and self-control.
Tags: Population , Countries , Most
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