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In our society, the topic of the environment has become a high focus point for many and a part of daily discussions. Simply put, there are too many people for the world and the resources it has to offer. The Earth may have the space for billions of people, but it simply cannot keep giving us resources forever. Three articles discuss the ideas of the world’s population and our effects on our planet and only home. Throughout history, our planet has been enough, however with the near overpopulated future, the question of whether or not it will stay the same is unsure. As the years go by, the efforts to save and preserve the world continue, but will this have a long lasting effect for the future generations and the planet? The first article, Headed Toward Extinction by Phillip Longman, discusses some ideas about the ever-growing population rate and the growth it is expected to have in the future. Rather, Longman discusses the fact that although the population has begun to increase in size constantly in recent years, there is no way that our planet can sustain the strain that we put onto it. This suggestion was contradictory to the information presented because it states that yes, the population is growing now, but it’s not going to keep this rate. Longman provides basis to this claim by stating, “the UN projects that the world population could begin declining by 2040.” Besides the rate of growth, or rather the decrease, the author also talks about how the death rate is rising in the countries where the birth rate used to be highest. It seems in this century, we are preparing for more and more people; by growing more food, clearing more land and the like. When in shocking revelation, after 2040, the strain may not be as large as it is now. The second article, New Limits to Growth Revive Malthusian Fears, the authors discuss topics similar to Longman’s: the world’s resources in comparison to the world population. In relationship to the previous article, the three authors tell of the present world instead of the future one. The world population, currently, is too much for the resources that we currently have and sometimes there simply isn’t a substitute for what we have and need. They state, “Powerful voices have warned that human activity would overwhelm the earth’s resources.” In human history, whether or not some resources would last forever has been a pressing concern, and the authors discuss the fact that “some of the resources now in great demand have no substitute.” Us as humans have worked around this fact in the past, but now it might not be as easy as just changing to a different metal when one runs out or switching to a different type of food product. The third and final article, The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis by Lynn White Jr., focuses on man’s treatment of our world and nature itself. Although we are currently trying to realize the serious effects we have on the environment, it still doesn’t change the fact that man has destroyed large portions of the earth in our own selfish ways. The author begs the question that in our selfish quest for resources and land, we have to examine what we are doing and asks, “What, if any, species of animals, birds, fish, shore life, or plants have died in the process?” We may need the resources we are taking, but maybe we need to be more aware of what exactly we are going to do in the future. In history, everything we have learned has been in the past, and now we are looking towards the future with no idea what the world will be like. Historically, our planet has always been enough and has provided enough for the people and animals that live on it. However, will it always? The authors in these three articles seem to question that idea, and their thoughts are shown with statistics and facts in human history. Since humans have been on earth, we have taken what we have needed from the earth, but it always had the same result: we aren’t giving much in return. Besides the overuse of materials and resources, we have also steadily increased our population, crossing the amount that we thought possible. These authors saw and recognized the ongoing struggle of earth in comparison to the population’s large numbers and they sought out to inform. One such thought, by White Jr., provides some insight into our situation, “Ever since man became a numerous species he has affected his environment notably.” The articles were written with the thought of the world in the future in mind, and now it seems we have to continue to be cautious on the materials we take and be mindful that maybe it won’t be enough forever. After all, there are billions of people taking from one source.

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