21 June 2017

16bn or 7.3bn in 2100? New UN figures say both possible

The United Nations has today released new projections for global population growth up until 2100. Issued every two years, the projections for 2017 show slight increases over those produced in 2015 – increases measured, however, in hundreds of millions of people.

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23 May 2017

Report: Population key to controlling climate change

Analysis undertaken for a comprehensive new plan to reverse global warming, Drawdown, has identified family planning and educating girls as among the top 10 workable solutions available today. Together, they would reduce CO2 emissions by 120 gigatons by 2050 — more than onshore and offshore wind power combined.

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31 March 2017

Sydney hits 5 million as Australia continues to grow

Australia’s two biggest cities – Melbourne and Sydney – account for more than half of the country’s population growth, new statistics for 2015-16 show. With Melbourne now its fastest growing city, sprawling suburbs of state capitals are Australia’s new boom towns

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5 March 2017

Is the Pope heeding warnings about population?

According to an unconfirmed report, Pope Francis has urged people to have fewer children in order to address environmental concerns. However, the Catholic Church’s opposition to artificial contraception remains in place.

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24 January 2017

18 million Chinese babies since end of one child policy

The Chinese government has released figures for births in 2016, the first full year since the end of the country’s one child policy. The 18m number is 7.9% above the number in 2015. According to a senior Chinese official, “the family planning policy adjustments were extremely timely and extremely effective”.

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11 January 2017

Chris Packham speaks out on impact of population

I remember when this was all fields full of birds and butterflies.” It’s a cliché isn’t it . . . but those words frequently describe changes most adults have seen if they have been fortunate enough to spend time in the countryside. It’s also a powerful metaphor for the wider situation we find ourselves in today.

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2016 Overshoot Index

Table indicating degree of ecological overshoot of nations, based on Global Footprint Network data

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9 December 2016

Panic and pragmatism: population in Korea and Japan

South Korea’s official statistics agency has just announced that it expects the country’s population to shrink by 8 million over the next 50 years. Currently around  50 million, the agency projects that the population will peak at 52.96 million in 2031 and then gradually decline to 43 million in 2065.

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27 October 2016

WWF: we are facing the next global mass extinction

The 2016 Living Planet report published by WWF today pulls no punches in describing the devastation to our natural world caused by human activity. The report calculates that by 2020 populations of wild vertebrate animals will have declined by nearly 70 per cent since 1970.

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Food

Sustainability Insights

Recent UN statistics confirm that the number of undernourished people in the world has been decreasing, but not fast enough to achieve the UN’s Millennium Development Goal (MDG 1c) target to halve the proportion of people who suffer from hunger between 1990 and 2015.1

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