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How many people can the planet Earth Support? (Essay Sample)


How many people can the earth support. In sum, the question about the number of individuals the planet earth can successfully support is not easy to answer. While humanity depends on natural resources, it must be noted that enhanced technology has extensive resource generation ability. When this is used, an increased number of individuals can still survive on earth, provided the process can be continuous and sustainable. On the other hand, if technology fails, then the increasing populations will certainly overcome the existing resources. Yet still, authorities can create policies that naturally control population growth. It is therefore predictable that humanity will act and use whatever tool to ensure their survival on earth, rather than point that the populations will be sustainable or unsustainable.


How many people can the planet Earth Support?
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How many people can the planet Earth Support?
Over the last century, human population has progressively increased. In the 1950s, the world had an overall population of about 2.5 billion people. Today, the numbers are approximately seven billion. It is important to note that this population is highly dependent on resources, some of which are non-renewable. It is also worth noting that even currently, this population is constantly increasing. It is this competition between the ever rising numbers of individuals against the resources meant to sustain them that raises the question as to whether the planet earth can successfully support its future population.
In an assessment carried out by Cohen (2010), he reviews the earth’s possible carrying capacity. Environmentally, this is defined as the indefinite amount of ecological load that can successfully and indefinitely be supported by an ecosystem. In this, sustainable and renewable resources as well as the strain brought on them by consumption are considered. Again, the regeneration capacity of each ecosystem is assessed in relation to endowments and renewability of existing structures. In summary, the process of trying to predict if the planet could survive the future with its current or increased population dwells on existing resources which include renewable and non-renewable, the rate at which they are consumed, and the rate at which the renewable ones are being replenished.
Yet other analyses use different parameters in predicting population growth. While a number of countries have independent policies on birth control, others like China have set a one child birth policy to curb population growth. If the overall world population would drastically reduce as a result governments’ policies, then it would be easy to predict that a controlled birthrate would successfully have human populations remain sustainable on the planet for eternity. It is then notable that the number of people the earth can successfully sustain is not solely dependent on the parameters used by various organizations to predict this number. On the other hand, Cohen (2010) indicates that a number of uncertainties operate that make all predictions imperfect.
Regeneration capacity of various populations remains one of the most important factors to consider. UNEP (2005) argues that if we had populations able to create their own food, and other utilities by use of technology, and without threatening the environment, then such populations would remain sustainable to eternity. However, this projection also fails to focus on the fact that some regeneration processes are highly dependent on natural resources. Good examples of such include food from agriculture and industrial energy production. To a point, the land used for agriculture reaches a limit beyond which regeneration is not possible. Other elements wor...
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