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Eight Billion or Bust

When I was in 1st grade, the world’s population had hit seven billion for the first time. It didn’t seem all that important at the moment, as I could barely count to twenty at the time. Now, as I am a senior in high school, I have learned more about the world around me, especially how quickly the population is growing. The population on Earth has now reached eight billion. In approximately twelve years, our planet’s amount of people has increased by one billion. Less than a century ago, our population had just crossed two billion, and we have more than doubled that number in less than a hundred years. Overall, there have been around 108 billion people living on the earth in total, and today’s amount makes up for about 6.5% of the total number of all people born. 

Since our world is continuously getting better at controlling diseases and producing enough food, the population continues to rise up. Life expectancy has gone up all over the world and falling mortality rates which in turn affect how many people live on our planet. Even though this might seem like a good thing, our planet continues to grow closer to its carrying capacity, which is the number of people that can be supported indefinitely by the Earth’s resources. At this point, scientists believe that the maximum amount of people that Earth can sustain is about nine to ten billion people. We are already knocking on that door with the recent addition of the eight billionth child born. 

Even though the human population has realized that our inhabitants are growing at an incredibly fast rate, there have been some actions across the globe to help slow the increase of people on the planet. Contraceptives are becoming more prevalent in countries with excessive baby booms, and more education on family planning is spreading. Scientists are starting to predict that growth speeds in crowded countries are going to start leveling out. For example, China has been the most populous country for most of history. Now scientists believe that it is leveling out because t India will soon surpass China as the country with the most people within the next decade. As China reaches its population peak, many other rapidly growing countries are expected to follow soon after. Another reason that these quickly growing countries should be slowing down is that fertility rates across the globe are going down. These rates go down as infant mortality rates go down as well, providing these women with the opportunity to not have as many children. Finally, between 2020 and 2100, over 90 countries are projected to have a decline in their population size, which will hopefully help balance out our crowded planet. 

In conclusion, helping control overpopulation is something that our planet needs to focus on otherwise, we won’t have a planet to return to. Additionally, education on overpopulation needs to be provided to all mothers worldwide, and contraceptives need to be brought more into action as well. So as we now live in a world shared with eight billion others, we might have to work even quicker to reverse the ever-growing human population.

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