exponential growth

Chris Driver drierac at deakin.edu.au
Wed Feb 15 18:05:40 EST 1995


What is this rubbish about exponential growth? Demographers from most parts of 
the world are agreed that the present trends are heading towards a steady 
population size. Many countries have already reached that point,and many 
others such as Australia have negative population growth, if you omit 
immigration. Australia has to import people to grow! The worl population is 
set to stabilise about the middle of the next century. The figures are 
published by the UN.

There are some ifs and buts about these figures-the effect of AIDS in some 
countries, the effects of present genocidal policies in Rwanda, Bosnia and 
otehr places will probably mean that the projected figures are too high. On 
the other hand certain countries do not give reliable figures so that adds a 
bit of interest to projections. However the figures are the best we have to go 
on, and the idea that there will be a relatively stable population within the 
lifetimes of most of our readers.

It is interesting that this demographic transition is happening in many 
countries without attaining a high material standard of living. Some people 
have suggested that womens rights are an important factor. Maybe so but 
population stabilisation is happening in Australia and the USA without a good 
record of equality of opportunity for women. I think it is fair to say that we 
don't understand what is going on and we need to know more.

Chris Driver


Chris Driver, Ph D
School of Biology and Chemistry, Rusden Campus
Deakin University
662 Blackburn Rd
Clayton, VIC, 3168
AUSTRALIA




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