Should we limit our population?
Debate Rounds (4)
This is my first debate at this site. I believe that human population at current size is a cause for a lot of our problems in the world and I do believe, it should be reduced to a sustainable level.
1. The first round is for acceptance.
2. A forfeit or concession is not allowed.
3. No personal attacks
Round 1: Acceptance
Round 2: Presenting all arguments (no rebuttals by con)
Round 3: Refutation of opponent's arguments (no new arguments)
Round 4: Defending your original arguments and conclusion (no new arguments)
Good luck to anyone willing to debate :)
At the current rate, we are adding one billion people ever 12 years. The list of problems that overpopulation is causing is quite long. I'm going to outline some that are most important in my opinion including shortages of all resources, overcrowding, war, pollution and destruction of environment and survival of other species.
Overpopulation is not the sole reason behind some of these problems, however it is a root cause.
I'm only going to outline the problems as most of the information can be easily found online and many pages could be
written about each of them.
It's not a mystery, that we live on a planet that have a limited amount of resource such as food, fresh water and fossil fuels.
At the moment, there is nearly one billion people without access to fresh water and food. That's one person out of seven. 25 thousand people die of hunger-related diseases or starvation each day. Children under 5, account for 45% of those deaths.
3.4 million people die each year because they don't have access to sufficient amounts of water for consumption and agriculture.
If we can not provide for all the children and people in general that are alive now, how can we think that we can take care of 9 billion which is estimated number of people in the 2050.
Many aquifers are depleting faster than they are replaced. A good example would be Ogallala Aquifer in the U.S. Great Plains. It's not that problem that may arise one day when the population reaches certain level, it's a problem that we are having today with current population size. We need water for consumption and agriculture and it will become a huge problem if we don't address our consumption needs which in this case can only be done through limiting population size.
Oil and gas(fossil fuels) depletion is another big problem. As of now, we do not have ability to meet our energy requirements without using fossil fuels which we are running out of. There are different estimates on how long we have before they are depleted ranging from 40 years to around 100 years but the energy crisis is no the only problem arising from fossil fuel depletion. Oil is used to produce variety of things including fertilizers, plastics, asphalt, transportation fuels. The whole economy will be affected and because we are dependent on fertilizers in the agriculture that will lead to more food shortages as food will be harder to grow. The bigger the population the bigger the issue will be.
We must accept the fact that we are dependent on our environment and that we are part of the nature which doesn't give us right
to destroy whatever we want, whenever we want just because we can.
Species extinction, I personally believe is the biggest issues the rapid extinction of species that we experience today is estimated to be 1000 - 10, 000 times higher than the natural extinction rate. Experts estimate that 0.01% - 0.1% of all species will become extinct each year. That may seem like not a lot but that's around 200-2000 species gone each year and those estimates are at the low end. We are the most evolved and the most dominant of the animals in the nature and we should take responsibility to protect all animals rather than destroying their habitat and hunting them down.
The ozone layer is destroyed by the chemicals from human industries such as chlorofluorocarbons. At the current rate about 4% of ozone layer is destroyed per decade. That allows more harmful radiation to go through which in turn may lead to development of cancer in more people. Human industries also contribute to global warming which I believe, I don't have to explain.
Deforestation that's a huge problem as it contributes to both species extinction and global warming as we are destroying the natural environment of many species which have no place to go or die directly in the process. Also, the less trees, we have the less C02 is absorbed leading to accelerated global warming.
Overcrowding and social pathology is problem that maybe affecting us right now but certainly will affect us one day.
John B Calhoun has a done study in 1962 with effects of overcrowding with rats which showed how population density and social pathology is related. Results :
"Violence quickly spiralled out of control. Cannibalism and infanticide followed. Males became hyper sexual, pan sexual and, an increasing proportion, homosexual. Calhoun called this vortex "a behavioural sink". Their numbers fell into terminal decline and the population tailed off to extinction. At the experiments" end, the only animals still alive had survived at an immense psychological cost: asexual and utterly withdrawn, they clustered in a vacant huddled mass. Even when reintroduced to normal rodent communities, these "socially autistic" animals remained isolated until death. In the words of one of Calhoun"s collaborators, rodent "utopia" had descended into "hell". - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov...
The study has been done with rats so it is uncertain whether the results can be generalised to humans, however as population grows, we can see increase in social pathology in our society today including crime rates, alcoholism and drug use. So we can't completely ignore those results and hopefully there will be more studies done to prove or disprove negative effects of overcrowding in humans but even if you ignore this, it's a fact that Earth has a limited space and we have no means of leaving this planet and it doesn't seem like we will any time soon. So whether we like it or not, we will have to place population limits as there won't be any space to even put people in not mentioning providing them with food, water or energy.
War is another problem that arises when there is scarcity of resources and too many people. There are conflicts now like Jordan River Conflict over water. Some believe Iraq invasion was driven with intention of taking control over their oil reserves as it's proven that Iraq has the 5th largest oil reserve. Historically, speaking it's not hard to see that conflicts arise once the resource are limited.
Social problems like unemployment may become even bigger issues. The more people we have, the more jobs we need to create which is difficult. Millions of people can't find jobs now that problem will exponentially increase with more people.
All of these problems are connected in some way or another. Some might say some these have nothing to do with overpopulation but that is simply not true. The only reason, we produce so much stuff and in turn use up resources which in turn lead to more environmental pollution, destruction and depletion of resources is to meet the needs of the people be it food, water, shelter or just to satisfy our desires. For example, the biggest drivers of deforestation are money(production of goods) and agriculture to provide room for planting crops to sustain a growing population. If population was much smaller lets say one billion people, some even suggest 200-300 million. The energy consumption wouldn't be that big of a problem, we probably could provide enough energy from renewable sources. Fresh water could easily replace itself for us and all the animals. We wouldn't be destroying and polluting the environment so much as our needs would be much smaller therefore animals could prosper as much as we could. Another thing the standard of living would rise, for example prices of oil are rising because there is less and less of it and the demand increases if the access to and the amount of resource wouldn't be a big issues which wouldn't be with much smaller population than all the prices would go down as well, allowing more people to enjoy better life.
Of cores, I'm not saying we should kill of people or anything radical like that. At first educating people about effects of overpopulation and advising them to limit themselves to having one child per couple might be enough. I don't believe that as humanity we are that stupid to not see the dangers if we are aware of them so I think that would work over a period of time. Alternatively, imposing limits on the number of children a couple can have just like they did in China when they realised they can not sustain a continues population growth which I think is excellent example of what will happen if we don't change our ways. Prevention is always better than dealing with the problem when it arises.
English is not my first language so if something is unclear, please let me know in next post but preferably inbox me.
State your arguments now and in next round we will rebuttal our arguments.
Good luck :)
daviddhawan forfeited this round.
You broke the rules and didn't provide any new arguments and as I couldn't fully understand what you wrote in your first post, I can't rebuttal that.
I guess this debate is over
daviddhawan forfeited this round.
Socres forfeited this round.
daviddhawan forfeited this round.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by WheezySquash8 2 years ago
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