Are you Neo Malthusian or Anti Malthusian?

I would describe my views as more akin to Anti-Malthusians.


Neo Malthusian and Anti Malthusian derive from Malthus’s theory about overpopulation. His theory on overpopulation is that population tends to increase at a faster rate than its means of subsistence and that unless it is checked by moral restraint or disaster (such as disease, famine, or war) widespread poverty and degradation inevitably result. The definition of over population is, “The excessive population of an area to the point of overcrowding, depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration.”


Some justifications that prove that our world isn’t “Overpopulated” is that no matter what, we as a species will find a way to solve any resource problems. In the definition of overpopulation above, it states the “depletion of natural resources, or environmental deterioration”, so as long as we don’t accomplish this, we won’t be overpopulated. The green revolution was a solution that helped steer us away from being overpopulated. The Green Revolution was an R&D movement that revolutionised the way we farmed by implementing technology as it provided us with an abundance of food resources. This helped eradicate food shortage in a lot of places. Not only that but the development of GMOs has also helped us grow crops in many different harsh conditions that people wouldn’t have dreamed possible. Subsequently, I believe that if we do run out of one resource e.g fossil fuels, then we would shift our attention to an alternate source e.g renewables.


The reason why Malthus’s theory doesn’t apply to present times is that he didn’t take human development into account, he probably believed that we wouldn’t develop such tools to aid us with the collection of resources. This is the flaw in his theory, with all the information that we currently have, it is clear to say that the development of technology has been beneficial in being able to provide us with the resources that we need.


A current example showing the humans ability to adapt would be “Global Warming”, since the industrial revolution, fossil fuels have become a huge part of our lives. Fossil fuels help make our lives easier e.g powering cars, generating electricity and others. However, the excessive use of this carbon emitting good has left a mark on our planet. Evidence of this is shown through the hole in our ozone, the melting of ice caps the raised sea levels etc. Mankind has recognised this and governments have taken action by reducing carbon emissions in each country. An example of the action that has been taken would be the Paris agreement. Now, how does this link to Anti-Malthusian beliefs? Well, it proves my point that humans have the ability to adapt to situations and won’t let our world resources completely be depleted.


In conclusion, I believe that so long as mankind makes the right decisions and makes sure to constantly develop new technology or alternate resource strategies in order to prevent the current resources from becoming completely used up, then I believe that our earth is not overpopulated and my ideas will still align with Anti-Malthusian ideology.

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