Population Decline


                     Kimberly Wright











            Are Declining Growth Rates rather than rapid population Growth Today’s major global population problem?  Population Decline is a major global problem. It is a major problem because the fertility rate is decreasing and there are a large number of deaths in some countries. Furthermore rapid population growth is a problem because there are other countries that are overpopulated and the economy cannot afford to support them.       

            Population decline is often used in relation to the large reductions in population due to violence, disease, castrophes, or any other nature disasters. It is referred as the decline in population of any organisms. In this case, we are referring to humans. This is used to describe a great reduction or decrease in the human population. It has been observed in the last millennium that population growth has slowed down.

            Population decline is also known as depopulation. This means to remove, or reduce, the population by destruction or even expulsion. Depopulation can happen for numerous reasons. Wars have been the cause of much depopulation. Prior to wars, the major causes of depopulation were famine, disease, and starvation. In today’s society, low birth rate is a cause of depopulation. The AIDS epidemic is also a cause of population decline in some countries. There are some historical examples of large depopulation, such as The Black Death, The Plague of Justinian, The Impact of European colonialism, the Impact of the Geo Arab, and European slave trades on the continent of Africa.  One last cause of depopulation is genocide.

            Famine has played a major role in depopulation.  It can cause a major population decline for a country. For example, the Great Irish Famine, their population fell by 20 to 25 percent. In this situation, depopulation was an occurrence that could not be avoided. In 1969, twenty million people died due to famine in China, which were 2.5 of their world’s population.

             Statistics have shown that population decline is occurring today in some regions. According to the US Census, 74 million people added to the world population in 2002 were less than the high of the 87 million people that were added in 1989-1990. It is also predicted that the fertility in many countries will drop below the replacement level before 2050.  Many people are having fewer babies than usual. In 1990, the average woman gave birth to 3.3 children. In 2002, the average was 2.6.  The decline in birth rate has brought about population decline and in the annual population increase. In Asia, the fertility rate is 1.3 children per woman and the country is predicted to shed a quarter of its 127 million people over the next four decades.

            Currently Russia is experiencing population decline. The president has implemented a plan to give incentives for couples who have a second child. The government believes the increase in the birth rate will put an end to the country’s declining birth rate therefore increasing the population rate. It is expected that Russia, population will decline from 143 million to 111 million by 2050, which is a loss of more than 30 million people. The reason for the decline is low birth rate, high death rate, high abortions, and a low level of immigration. Economic difficulties and   high rates of alcoholism amount for the low birth rate. The birth rate is 1.3 births per woman. The birth rate is supposed to be 10 births per 1000 people.

            Russia is also experiencing a high death rate, which are 15 deaths per 1000 people every year. In comparison to the United States, the death rate in America is 8 per 1000 people.   Russia has high alcoholic related emergencies and many people have to go to the emergency room. Furthermore, Russia life expectancy is very low.  The life expectancy in men is rather lower and can be a result of the high level of alcoholism.

            In many countries the population is continuously decreasing.  Countries are losing a large percent of their population due to this.  It has been expected that Germany population will fall by 17 million people from their current 82 million in the next 50 years.   Overall the world population will start to decline after year 2050. As stated earlier many women are not bearing as many children as many children as they use to. Also each region of the globe has seen great reductions in growth rates in recent decades. There are countries that are experiencing negative growth rates due to low fertility rates and emigration.

            In Europe their population has declined.  Their population reaches 731 million people and now it is about to decline. Europe share of the world’s population is expected to decline from 11 percent to 7 percent by the year of 2050. Immigration is a major cause of Europe’s population.  If immigration stopped and the levels of fertility remained unchanged, then the population of Europe would fall well below 600 million people by mid-century. The population decline is due to women and men choosing to have fewer children. The fertility level is closer to one than two children per couple.

            Many European countries view their fertility rate as being too low; there are countries that have encouraged adoption to increase the population. European governments have attempted to increase the versatility rate by encouraging couples to have more babies.  The government has improved adoption policies to help raise the birth rate in European countries. They have put incentives in place such as paternity leave, childcare, flexible work schedules, and grants.  The government wants to plan to work so the population begins to grow in this region.

China has one of the largest populations.   Its versatility rate has declined from 5.8 to 1.8 today.  China is expected to lose can lose 20 to 30 percent of its population every generation.  Due to the large population and the problems that it brought in 1979, China came out with the “China One Child Family Policy”. This policy was implemented to respond to concerns about the social and economic consequence of continuous rapid population growth. This limits most families to one child so that the population can be controlled and decline.  This policy does exempt   some people such as people who are ethnic minorities and who live in rural areas. This policy is very controversial because many people feel the government should not be involved with the number of children in a family.

             After the One child Policy Act, the fertility rate in China dropped over three births per women to almost 1.8. Statistics showed that the population went from 300 to 400 million people fewer in 2008 with the One Child Act. The government believes this would not have occurred without the policy it. The policy helped the population problem, but overwhelmed social services such as health care.

             On the other hand many people believe that rapid population growth is a major global issue. People have predicted that the world population will reach 60,000,000,000,000,000.There are some nations that believe that the birth rates are too low. Annual rates of birth have decreased from about 2 to 1.3 percent. In order to reach this expected population growth, developing countries such as India, Iran, Pakistan and Bangladesh will have the largest increase from 1.2 to 1.5 billion people by the end of the century. Population has a great impact on human life. The more people the world, the more natural resources the earth has to supply.

             Annually the growth rate of the human population has declined; it peaked in 1962 and 1963 at 2.20% per annum. The annual growth rate has fallen from 88 million to 75.2 million. In 2009, it increased but it is predicted to fall by year 2050. Furthermore, in the year 3400 we are predicted to have a population of 10 sextillion people.  It has been made clear that this major population growth must cease because of various factors. These factors include limited energy, pollution, limited food, natural resources and a scarcity of supplies.

             There are many factors that increase the population. There are now cures to deadly disease such as vaccines and other medicines; therefore people are able to live longer. Also, there has been an increase in fertility rate due to the factor of the age of which a girl starts her cycle. Many unmarried teens have babies at a younger age. Although, the numbers are low in the world’s fertility rate, it is still high enough for the world’s population to increase.

            Population growth becomes a problem in developing countries. Some of the third world countries they have poor education. Therefore women are not as educated on methods of birth control and how to use them. Most of the women in these do not have money or the recourse to prevent pregnancies. They feel that when they have children that is gives them higher standards. Women in some countries believe children improve their place in society. In these countries more children represent status for the parents.  These parents feel that their children give them economic security.  Many parents in developing countries believe children can contribute by help with farming and chores. Population is the highest in these third world developing countries

 In conclusion, population decline and population growth are both a major global issue. The population is growing because of many countries such as China and other developing countries that have a high continuous population. Population growth is one of the biggest problems faced on the earth because it will lead to overcrowding. If the world becomes overcrowded, then we will run out of space and land for people to live. Also, there will be enough resources available to everyone

The world’s population is continuously decreasing due to things such as low fertility rate, high death rate, famine and policies put in place to decrease the population. It has been acknowledge that the fertility rate is much lower in today’s society compared to previous years.  Most women are choosing to have fewer children. .  The population has declined in many countries like Europe and Russia and this has impacted the world. The debate continues about the decline in population, but there have always been factors that impact the decline of world population.






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