What evidence would tell us if human population has exceeded the Earth's carrying capacity?
Earth's human population currently stands at 7 billion and is on target to double in 70 years. Clearly, it seems, at some point human population will be greater than the planet's resources--food, clean water, space--can bear. How might we know we have grown beyond the Earth's carrying capacity for our species?
When the ground is completely brown and dried up, when water sources become truly obsolete, when there really isn't enough food. But then I ask, would the Earth ever really reach capacity or will the money and greed within humans make the Earth appear to be at capacity?
I would hope we altered course before reaching such signs of environmental collapse. I would agree Earth's carrying capacity in regard to our species is flexible. A global pandemic like the Black death of old could swat us down dramatically.
"The minimum amount of agricultural land necessary for sustainable food security, with a diversified diet similar to those of North America and Western Europe (hence including meat), is 0.5 of a hectare per person. This does not allow for any land degradation such as soil erosion, and it assumes adequate water supplies. Very few populous countries have more than an average of 0.25 of a hectare. It is realistic to suppose that the absolute minimum of arable land to support one person is a mere 0.07 of a hectare–and this assumes a largely vegetarian diet, no land degradation or water shortages, virtually no post-harvest waste, and farmers who know precisely when and how to plant, fertilize, irrigate, etc." [FAO, 1993]
The FAO is the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
These figures could be out of date but they are somewhere to start.
I personally believe we have gone over the point of no return, we have long passed the break even point.
The big problem is nobody in power is saying anything, we are very lucky we have the internet to keep us up to date.
When governments start talking about not having kids and growing gardens then we know it is too late and the world has serious problems.
I just found this on the internet see what you think
http://www.naturalnews.com/039490_overp … lapse.html
Overall, I think the article is a valid assessment of the current state of affairs. Thanks for the link!
Some companies and produce outlets are mindful of the human carrying capacity dilemma. Other countries have predicted that food sources will be limited in the future. For example, China have purchased a number of farms in New Zealand, this is indicative of the human carrying capacity trend.
i think the biggest buyers of farmland in NZ are the Swiss followed by Europe as a whole. China is not a big buyer.
China has a One Child Policy for the past 30 years so they know something about the problems the future holds.
China are the biggest buyers of farmland in NZ, negotiations between both countries was extensive and comprehensive.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/6368089 … ew-Zealand
The Overseas Investment Office show that of the 872,313 hectares of gross land sold to foreign interests over the past five years, only 223ha were sold to Chinese.
It's not growing at that same rate everywhere. Some parts of the world, like India, have populations that are growing at disproportionate rates to make the world as populated as it is. Those regions will face starvation and lack of basic needs if the boom is not brought under control.
Natural resources get used up. When we start rationing water and other natural resources, we will know.
i think that the human population has less than 70 years left if it is to carry on toward exceeding carrying capacity by 12 billion souls.
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