Why our population grows

All living things tend to increase their population whenever possible; this is a requirement for continued existence of species in the face of the natural processes that limit them.  In the recent past, humans have overcome most of the natural processes that limit their numbers; consequently, the human population of the Earth has been able to increase quickly. The Earth’s human population is increasing because an increasingly greater number of people are being born than are dying.


In recent times many people, especially people in developed countries, have become more educated and more secure and have become more aware of the disadvantages and the superfluity of having a large number of children, and have controlled their fertility. 


Despite the intentions of their citizens many of these developed countries still have a high rate of population growth; countries like Australia, the United States and Britain, as well as others.  Commonly this population growth is supported by the governments of these countries by encouraging immigration.


A high rate of population growth in many developed countries is also supported by their governments by encouraging existing citizens to have more children.  In Australia the federal government pays women a large sum of money ($6000 per baby) to have babies, and provides an increasing amount of welfare the more children a family has, as well as many other financial benefits to increase fertility.  A past treasurer of Australia ran a famous fertility promotion imploring couples to have "one for mum, one for dad and one for your country", to try to get couples to have more than just enough children to replace themselves, so that the population would grow.


Many developing countries also have high population growth rate, commonly much higher than most developed countries.  This is because developed countries usually help people in developing countries to reduce their death rate by providing them with the means to overcome the natural processes that limit their numbers; means such as medical aid and basic food and water supplies.  However, people in developing countries commonly don’t have the education and experience that allows them to understand why having many children is undesirable.  They may not understand how conception occurs or have access to contraceptives and, commonly, they have a culture that doesn’t accept controlling fertility.  


Maintaining the birth rate while reducing the death rate means that many developing countries currently have very high population growth and high population density, which reduces the quality of the peoples lives and limits their scope for social development.


The Earth’s human population is increasing quickly because of a combination of population increase in some developed countries due to government policies on immigration and welfare support for larger families, and population increase in undeveloped countries due to a lack of understanding of the reasons and means for controlling family size.


The fast increasing population of the Earth is causing many problems and will cause even more in the near future.  There seems to be no advantage to a large and ever-increasing population, so why are the governments of some developed countries encouraging population growth, and indirectly encouraging population growth in undeveloped countries? 


The reason is that population growth supports our current economic systems which must grow to function and population growth is ultimately the only way to have economic growth.  As long as our economic system works the way it does now, the governments of the Earth will do whatever they have to, to ensure that population continues to grow so that their economies continue to grow.


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