The fast population expansion brought on by higher birth rates and lower mortality rates is referred to as rapid population growth. Overpopulation is a situation in which there are more people than the world can support. Several things contribute to overpopulation. An imbalance between births and deaths is the main factor contributing to population expansion and possibly the most evident factor. According to the World Health Organization, the infant mortality rate has fallen internationally, with 4.1 million baby deaths in 2017 compared to 8.8 million in 1990. (WHO). Of course, the news regarding public health is welcome.
The average lifetime is rising globally at the same time. The majority of those of us alive now will probably live a lot longer than our ancestors did. Since 1900, the average life expectancy has more than doubled globally, mainly to improvements in general hygiene, technology, and medicine. Although declining mortality rates are also nothing to be concerned about, widespread lifespan does factor into the math of population growth. A region that is currently sparsely populated may eventually become densely populated if it cannot support life.
Every year, technology continues to improve, having a wide range of effects on humanity. One of them has been the capacity to save lives and advance universal medical care. The population has grown, and lifespans have increased as a direct result of this.
There are various immediate effects that result from this population explosion that is occurring so quickly. Natural resource depletion is mostly caused by the uneven and uncontrolled use of resources that is a result of population increase. Earth’s ability to produce raw materials is finite, and the natural resource deficit—the rate at which supplies are being utilized faster than they can be produced—is inching closer to being reached with each passing year. In emerging nations, overpopulation arises as a result of severe competition for resource control. Geopolitical tensions frequently cause border disputes over water resources, which can lead to war.
Degradation of the environment: A rise in energy production using charcoal, gasoline, and natural gas, as well as unrestricted exploitation of natural resources, are both detrimental to the environment (fossil fuels). On the one hand, there are negative effects like desertification and deforestation, loss of animal and plant species, modifications to the water cycle, and, most obvious of all, the production of massive quantities of greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.
Falling wages: In contrast hand, there are numerous applicants vying for a limited number of positions, which will inevitably lead to high unemployment rates in the future. This, in turn, could lead to an increase in crime and social unrest.
Technology progress: On the bright side, dense urban populations support research and development targeted at addressing the needs of the populous. The extensive use of telecommunication, the development, collection, and use of Big Data for sustainable reasons, the emergence of Smart Cities intended to create livable neighbourhoods for the rising population, and more are a few examples.
Paradoxically, the movement of individuals to metropolitan regions may cause serious problems for rural communities. Migration out of these rural areas causes an increase in underused infrastructure and previously farmed landscapes whose ecosystems degrade without human intervention.
As there is a significant effect of overcrowding. One of the largest issues facing humanity today is overpopulation, which poses a threat to the planet’s economic, environmental, and social future in the near future.
In Pakistan, one of the pressing challenges is population. Pakistan is currently the world’s fifth-most populous nation. Pakistan’s population is expected to grow to 262.96 million in 2030, 338.01 million in 2050, and 403.10 million by 2100, according to the United Nations World Population Prospects 2019. This indicates that there will be a massive population explosion without a thoughtful approach to managing it.
The majority of people believe that having too many people is a good thing; however, this is likely untrue because it raises concerns about the status of the economy. In terms of social and economic metrics, the majority of people lack access to fundamental freedoms and amenities, including healthcare, employment, and education.
Some believe that the population issue will eventually be resolved on its own as a result of demographic transition, where populations tend to have fewer children as their economic and educational conditions improve, as well as improvements in education and female economic empowerment that enable women to decide whether or not to have children.
Others believe that more proactive measures, such as financial incentives to have fewer children or restrictions on the number of children permitted per family, are the best ways to combat overpopulation. These kinds of actions raise social and ethical issues that are challenging to resolve swiftly.
The following actions could be performed to limit population growth:
Women’s empowerment: Governments, businesses, and civil society should prioritize gender equality in all social, economic, and environmental activities. The only way to enable women to lead autonomous lives and make choices about whether to pursue more education, enter the workforce, start a family, or have children is through this.
Access to high-quality education for all: Although the subjects might not seem linked, having a strong education is important for population control. It is a proven truth that keeping girls in school lowers their likelihood of becoming pregnant at a young age, which lowers the rate of maternal mortality.
Family-planning initiatives: By reducing the number of unwanted children and implementing family planning programs that provide access to contraception, good sex education programs and family planning initiatives improve the lives of family members by enabling them to use their resources and stay out of situations where they face poverty, hunger, or disease.
Putting in place more productive production techniques: The number of natural resources needed to meet the requirements of the people can be decreased by funding RD&I to create production techniques that increase the effectiveness of human endeavours.
Controlling migration flows entails putting in place programmes to stop indigenous peoples from being forced to leave their homes for work, survival, or because of armed conflict. This promotes more sustainable use of resources, prevents resource depletion, and improves community life by preventing family separation, alienation, and depopulation.
These initiatives can help to overcome the issue of overpopulation.