The world 'population bomb', a grim scenario that warns of perils of overpopulation like mass starvation and environmental deterioration, may not go off, according to a new study. The results are based on a study commissioned by Club of Rome, and say that current projections show the world population will reach a high of 8.8 billion before the middle of the century, then decline rapidly. The research says that the people could come sooner than previously thought, and earlier still if governments take progressive steps to raise average incomes and education levels.
The Guardian said that the revised forecasts are good for environment. Once the peak is reached, pressure on nature and the climate should start to ease, along with associated social and political tensions, the outlet said.
However, the authors caution that falling birth rates alone will not solve the environmental problems, as the global population has already 8 billion mark.
Delving deeper, the study talks about the problems that will arrive due to declining population, such as shrinking workforce and greater stress on healthcare associated with an ageing society - pointing to the situation in Japan and South Korea.
"This gives us evidence to believe the population bomb won't go off, but we still face significant challenges from an environmental perspective. We need a lot of effort to address the current development paradigm of overconsumption and overproduction, which are bigger problems than population," Ben Callegari, one of the authors of the report, was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
The latest study presents an optimistic picture than the UN estimate last year, which said that the world population would hit 9.7 billion by the middle of the century and continue to rise for several decades afterwards.