Exponential population growth + Finite land mass = ???
Ya' aint gotta be no scientist to do that math!
Fortunately, I have a solution to this dilemma. Unfortunately, I can't divulge this solution until rule #1 is unveiled. Until then, we have to accept and understand our situation in order to deal with it. Here's the lowdown...
If the majority of humanity adopts consumption rates as high as the western countries, then we would need 4 to 5 more planets to sustain ourselves.
Wanna know why? Read on....
The planets biological productive capacity (biocapacity) is approximately 1.9 hectares per person. Globally, we use up to 2.2 hectares per person. Thus, we are living beyond the planet's biocapacity to sustain us by 15%. This deficit is apparent, as natural ecosystems around us fail one by one.
STILL interested? OK then...
The planet's biocapacity is dependent on the global population and rate of consumption. High consumption depletes the planet's carrying capacity. And estimates indicate that, if global population trends continue, the ecological footprint available to each person would be reduced to 1.5 hectares per person, by 2050.
The USA has the largest per capita footprint in the world - a footprint of 9.57 hectares (anyone surprised?) If everyone on the planet was to live like the average American, we would need 5 planets to sustain everyone. At a footprint of 9.57 hectares per person, our planet's biocapacity would only be able to support about 1.2 billion people - far less than the 7 billion we have on Earth. Now dig this, if everyone lived like those residing in Bangladesh, where the average footprint is only 0.5 hectares, then the earth could support roughly 22 billion people.
OK.... I'm tapped!
In the new world, population will be controlled by rule #1.
AND SO IT SHALL BE WRITTEN!