[Date Prev][Date Next][Date Index]

Re: E-M:/ U.S. population to hit 1 billion by 2100

Enviro-Mich message from Aaron Wissner <aaronwissner@yahoo.com>

One clarification and an extension:

We IMPORT 2/3 of our petroleum consumption.

The reason gasoline prices have been rising for the
past three years is that the availability of oil
exports (from all the exporting nations added
together) is no longer increasing.  In fact, it now
appears to be declining.  AND global demand for those
oil exports is rising rapidly.

To quote from President Bush yesterday, "...demand is
rising faster than supply. And that's why you're
seeing global energy prices rise."

So, how does that impact the population of the USA?

First, population size is dependent upon the food
supply.  The smaller the food supply, the smaller the
population can be.  Ecologists talk of growth,
carrying capacity, and overshoot when relating food to

To see what happens to a nation when oil supply
rapidly declines, contrast Cuba with North Korea after
we collapsed the USSR.  Both lost over half of their
oil imports.  Cuba was able to adapt to nation wide
organic agriculture (see the film "The Power of
Community" or "The Greening of Cuba").  North Korea,
on the other hand, had a severe famine and the
population declined by one or two million.

What will happen to food production in the USA as oil
becomes more scarce, and more costly?

These are not the only troubles facing the USA as far
as food production is concerned.  We have severe
issues with soil depletion, fresh water depletion,
phosphorous depletion, nitrogen depletion...  What
will be the food production capacity of the USA in

Population is one of the key topics we'll be examining
at the Sustainability Conference.  I'm still looking
for someone who can speak clearly to the participants
on this subject.  I have one lead on a person, but I
don't have any money left in the budget to fly him in
from the East Coast.  If there were a university or
college professor in Michigan who had a great grasp on
these things, I would love to hear from them, because
a good speaker on this topic would be greatly


As to India, it is more likely than not that their
ultimate carrying capacity will decline for the same
reasons as in the USA.

Good topic, thank you for bringing it up!!!


Aaron Wissner
Value System Journal: Peak Oil & Sustainability
Local Future Network
Peak Oil Videos
Sustainability Conference

ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"