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Thread: Preventing a resource crunch

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I'm not sure what you mean by "correct level of population," but I guess you mean "maximum acceptable population," because if you just mean "correct level" then there's really no way to say whether 10 million or 20 million people would be better. I think it's pretty hard to determine, but I think it is certainly fewer than our current population, assuming that we aim to maintain a relatively high standard of living and that it must be sustainable.
    The OP refers to people who will soon “over populate” the world. Over what? How much is over? If someone cannot tell me what the right level of population is (approximations are fine), how can they know whether the population will soon be “over”?

    I was not consulted before this thread, introducing the idea that humans will soon “over populate” the earth, was posted, so I don’t think it’s my job to explain to everyone what exactly the OP means by this. In fact, that’s what I’ve been trying to get the OP to do.
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    I'm pretty sure we are over populated already. Many species are on the brink. It is not just about us. Now if we could find a way to bring back species, like tigers, rhino's.
    So what level of population would you say is the right amount of population, such that numbers higher than this would be over population?

    In the thread title we have a reference to a “resource crunch”, but this response refers instead to biodiversity (although perhaps you are calling biodiversity a type of resource). This is a more serious concern in my view. The modern era has had a quite high rate of extinction, we don’t know how to do a Jurassic Park and bring back extinct species (and even if we did, we’d have to correct the problem that led to the extinction in the first place), so if you consider that a problem, it’s happening now.

    The idea that the world is running out of traditional “resources” doesn’t keep me up at night at all. Not even oil, the bogeyman for want of which civilisation is about to collapse, and has been about to collapse for my entire life. There’s plenty of oil; what there isn’t plenty of is capacity to absorb all the carbon dioxide produced by burning oil.
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    The OP refers to people who will soon “over populate” the world. Over what? How much is over? If someone cannot tell me what the right level of population is (approximations are fine), how can they know whether the population will soon be “over”?

    I was not consulted before this thread, introducing the idea that humans will soon “over populate” the earth, was posted, so I don’t think it’s my job to explain to everyone what exactly the OP means by this. In fact, that’s what I’ve been trying to get the OP to do.
    Sure, I understand. I mistakenly thought that you were asking it of everyone as a general question. I understand now it was specifically for the OP.
    As above, so below

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    So what level of population would you say is the right amount of population, such that numbers higher than this would be over population?

    In the thread title we have a reference to a “resource crunch”, but this response refers instead to biodiversity (although perhaps you are calling biodiversity a type of resource). This is a more serious concern in my view. The modern era has had a quite high rate of extinction, we don’t know how to do a Jurassic Park and bring back extinct species (and even if we did, we’d have to correct the problem that led to the extinction in the first place), so if you consider that a problem, it’s happening now.

    The idea that the world is running out of traditional “resources” doesn’t keep me up at night at all. Not even oil, the bogeyman for want of which civilisation is about to collapse, and has been about to collapse for my entire life. There’s plenty of oil; what there isn’t plenty of is capacity to absorb all the carbon dioxide produced by burning oil.
    I would consider loss of habitat, for biodiversity a resource crunch, I would consider putting too much carbon dioxide in the air a resource crunch. I would consider lack of land to absorb water, instead of the major flooding, to be a lack of resource.

    So perhaps, designing farmland and cities, with areas of to store storm water runoff, would correct part of the problem. It could be designed to increase wetlands for more area for biodiversity.
    The moment an instant lasted forever, we were destined for the leading edge of eternity.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    I would consider loss of habitat, for biodiversity a resource crunch, I would consider putting too much carbon dioxide in the air a resource crunch. I would consider lack of land to absorb water, instead of the major flooding, to be a lack of resource.
    OK, fair enough, I can work with a broad definition of resource.

    So how many people do you think is too many?
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    OK, fair enough, I can work with a broad definition of resource.

    So how many people do you think is too many?
    I don't know, how many ants are too many. If information causes people to make different decisions that aren't destructive to earth. Right now, there are too many people because we are on a road to destroying the earth. If many people invent ways to make the earth stable again, then good. It is probably knowledge that is the problem right now, and I don't know how that is stopped. We now have the power of destruction in our abilities. So we can have passive destruction of the earth through the every day activities, and aggressive destruction through nuclear war, destruction of our infrastructure such as destroying all our electronics, or people inventing pandemic like diseases and allowing accidents to release those pandemic causing diseases. Bill Gates says we should treat diseases like we treat war. https://www.businessinsider.com/bill...-coming-2018-4
    The moment an instant lasted forever, we were destined for the leading edge of eternity.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    I don't know, how many ants are too many.
    As we seem to have switched over from "about to over populated" to "have already over populated", I guess our number is less than seven billion or so. But we don't have a sense of whether it's five billion, one billion, ten million, fewer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    If information causes people to make different decisions that aren't destructive to earth.
    I'm having a bit of a hard time with this one, as it's an "if" clause without a conclusion. Does this go with the proceeding sentence, or the following one?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    Right now, there are too many people because we are on a road to destroying the earth.
    I'm not sure the conclusion of too many people follows here, and the next sentence is,

    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    If many people invent ways to make the earth stable again, then good.
    So the current number of people could be alright then?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    It is probably knowledge that is the problem right now, and I don't know how that is stopped. We now have the power of destruction in our abilities. So we can have passive destruction of the earth through the every day activities, and aggressive destruction through nuclear war, destruction of our infrastructure such as destroying all our electronics, or people inventing pandemic like diseases and allowing accidents to release those pandemic causing diseases.
    I don't know how any of these things, besides the first, are really resolved by a reduction in population, even a fairly large one. But if "passive destruction" means elimination of habitat, changes in climate due to carbon emissions, etc., well, holding the damage done by each person fixed, reducing the population reduces the problem. On the other hand, holding the population fixed, reducing the damage done by each person also reduces the problem.

    I just don't see how any of these things are necessary consequences of a population of seven billion. There are things humanity can do to reduce carbon dioxide emissions quite substantially, while keeping the current population fixed, or even allowing to increase it somewhat. Granted, these things are not being done, but neither is reducing the population, so I don't see how we can point to one as the solution while excluding the other. It's also eminently possible to reduce habitat destruction while holding the current population fixed. Which of these problems is a necessary consequence of the level of population we have? I'm not sure any of them are. The fact that we're not dealing with them very effectively, doesn't mean they can't be dealt with effectively. If one feels there are too many drug addicts, bank robbers, murderers, or rapists, is reducing the population, so there will be fewer drug addicts, bank robbers, murderers, or rapists, the only solution? Or might there be some other solution?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copernicus View Post
    Bill Gates says we should treat diseases like we treat war. https://www.businessinsider.com/bill...-coming-2018-4
    Well, maybe he's right about a pandemic coming, but I'm not sure predicting a pandemic that kills 30 million out of seven billion, when the 1918 pandemic killed 50 million out of less than two billion, really makes the case very effectively that the problem is, there are too many people. If we reduce the population below 30 million, then I guarantee there will be no pandemic that kills 30 million. Is that a good solution?
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    As we seem to have switched over from "about to over populated" to "have already over populated", I guess our number is less than seven billion or so. But we don't have a sense of whether it's five billion, one billion, ten million, fewer?
    We don't have a good idea of the "ideal" yet because it depends on a lot of other factors; life expectancy, technology and industrialization, energy efficiency, agricultural development, common practices of daily lifestyles, and many other things that affect how humans interact with our ecosystem. As we live at present, we are overpopulated.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    We don't have a good idea of the "ideal" yet because it depends on a lot of other factors; life expectancy, technology and industrialization, energy efficiency, agricultural development, common practices of daily lifestyles, and many other things that affect how humans interact with our ecosystem. As we live at present, we are overpopulated.
    That sums it up well.
    The moment an instant lasted forever, we were destined for the leading edge of eternity.

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