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is dealt with anything else is a band-aid.  There are pockets where population has, by and large, peaked and is predicted to decline over the next 40 years, Europe being one such.  The rest of the planet is still pumping out the kids.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 11:34:33 AM EST
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ATinNM:
There are pockets where population has, by and large, peaked and is predicted to decline over the next 40 years, Europe being one such.  The rest of the planet is still pumping out the kids.  

Not only Europe: many non-European countries have pretty much stopped "pumping out the kids". If you look at projected population growth and total fertility rates, you can see that even today, many populous countries are well below the replacement rate: China, Russia, Japan, but also Brazil, Iran, and even Venezuela and Mexico considering that in "poor" countries, the replacement rate is higher than 2.1 children per woman.

Today, the bulk of the population growth is in sub-Saharan Africa (but many African countries -except Nigeria and Congo - are starting from a rather low population) and especially the Indian sub-continent: India is expected to overtake China as the most populous country before 2030.

Even if the world population is expected to stop growing and even start decreasing before the end of this century, this doesn't mean there's not going to be a considerable strain on resources before that: especially in South Asia: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, the Philippines and even Afghanistan. This, combined with female infanticide and selective abortion, is not boding well for the future of the region.

by Bernard on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 12:29:10 PM EST
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FAO food price index.  The recent downturn is due entirely to a fall in sugar and dairy prices.  These have no impact on food prices in most of the world:

  1.  They can't afford sugar

  2.  Most of the world can't digest milk

Breaking out the different components:

It can be seen cereal prices are hovering at the danger point of social and political unrest ... as determined by some researchers in a report I'm too tired to find.

Given there is nothing, on the horizon, to even suggest an increase in global food production and the failure of GMO to live up to its hype it is safe to conclude food production is what it is and it's not going to increase.  

The impact of Global Climate Change is unknown but, at the moment, it's safe to say near-term global availability of cereals, e.g., wheat, will decrease. Example, the short grass prairie of the US is seeing falling production from a combination of drought and the emptying of the Ogallala aquifer.    

Adding this all up, I submit projections of a 9 billion human population in 2040 are moonshine.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 07:05:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So the population growth in developed pockets can be controlled - via economic pressures, skewed income distribution, and perhaps high, wrong-headed personal choice standards set by pulp, teen media. The undeveloped world is meeting clear overshots, sharpened by debt tributes and resourse restrictions. There will be pain for pumping out kids there. Or can that hockey stick resolevd with no tears?
by das monde on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 04:49:59 PM EST
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No, because the very minor reductions in birth rate in particular cases doesn't come anywhere close to solving the overall problem. We are much further past the carrying capacity of the planet than is admitted.

  • For example, there is actually no problem with burning coal, if the global population is low enough. The pollution just fades into the noise of volcanoes, ocean CO2 buffer, etc.

  • There is no problem with monoculture farming, if the global population is low enough. The reduction in wild land available to support species variation is absorbed into the noise of land lost to natural periodic floods or forest fires.

Unfortunately for us, you can't fool Mother Nature. Somebody, probably our children's generation, is in for it big time.
by asdf on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 08:10:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Humans have a propensity for thinking the sun shines out our butts and we are above Nature.  It doesn't and we aren't.  

I think we're looking at dramatic system failures in the Third World by 2025 at best and we could see them by the end of this decade.  When Complex Systems move to a new Fitness Landscape they move very, very, fast.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 08:33:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The effect of post 2008-economy will take another decade or two to show up in population numbers.
by das monde on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 03:25:34 AM EST
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To what end?  People aren't rational so the situation can't be discussed rationally thus it isn't going to be solved rationally.  It's going to be solved Biologically:

Poor sanitation can foster transmission of all sorts of nasty bacterial bugs. But a new study has found that among common bacteria, antibiotic resistance is brewing in the New Delhi water supply--and spreading in at least 20 strains, including some that cause dysentery and cholera. "

A commonplace finding of Ecology is that when a species' population expands beyond the carrying capacity of its ecological niche the population numbers collapse.  Doesn't matter if the species is lynx in the Canadian arctic or human beings living in Chaco Canyon or Easter Island.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 10:12:19 AM EST
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A friend of mine came back from a cruise, and reported that the stewards themselves spray sanitizer on your hands before you go into the dining room, and when you come back onto the ship after a land tour. Maybe cruise ships are the canary in the mine...
by asdf on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 10:24:53 AM EST
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That's because cruise ships seem to have an issue with Norovirus.

It's hard enough to clean a hospital. But keeping a highly infectious and persistent virus under control on a floating hotel is pretty much impossible.

And if it's not there already, it only takes one person to bring it aboard.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 11:02:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
We don't eat at salad bars anymore.  It's too dangerous.  

If we are in El Paso - armpit of the US - we only eat packaged foods.  The restaurants hire illegals so they don't have to pay for a health check and parasitic brain worms have been found in dish washers, bus boys, cooks, and waiters.

yuck

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 11:51:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
...can that hockey stick resolved with no tears?

It can but I don't see the necessary actions being taken and plenty of wrong actions, e.g., religious hysteria restrictions on access to birth control and abortion.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Jul 14th, 2013 at 08:23:36 PM EST
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Should this discussion and action be public? Or would it be more "effective" to plan it stealthily, even with some anti-abortion, resource exploitation camouflage?
by das monde on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 03:21:39 AM EST
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Logscale, please. It's actually slowing down.

Finance is the brain [tumour] of the economy
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 04:19:48 AM EST
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Yes but the percentage increase is from a much larger base.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 10:25:21 AM EST
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Logistic growth fits the bill. Unfortunately, overshoooting and collapse occurs because of delayed feedback.

Finance is the brain [tumour] of the economy
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 06:08:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yup.  I started talking about Lokta-Volterra and then decided to back off.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 06:34:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Been there, done that.

Finance is the brain [tumour] of the economy
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jul 15th, 2013 at 06:44:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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