“Women hold up half the sky,” reads an old Chinese saying. Indeed, women have traditionally been the world’s farmers, child bearers, and caretakers – the backbone of families and societies. And yet, women continue to suffer from gender discrimination in much of the world. This second-class citizenship is detrimental first and foremost to the well-being of women themselves, and is also a major obstacle to advancing economic development, reducing poverty and achieving environmentally sustainable societies.
One of the greatest challenges facing our growing population is how we will feed 10 billion people. As our global family expands by 30 percent in just a little over 30 years, experts expect we will need to double our food production if we are to accommodate both the growing number of people and their changing diets. At the same time, climate change is beginning to affect every aspect of food production, creating a lot of uncertainty about the world’s ability to meet future food needs.
The global community must manage an ever-growing amount of pollution as our population continues to grow by 80+ million people each year, much of it in urban areas. This waste is in the air, on land, and in the water, affecting the climate and our very own well-being. Preserving our environmental quality in the face of a more urbanized, affluent, and energy-dependent world is one of the largest challenges of the 21st century.
Let’s be frank: the outlook for the Arctic isn’t exactly as bright as snow. In the past 40 years we’ve witnessed massive ice melting on sea and land due to anthropological climate change, and with our continuously growing population it’s showing no signs of stopping. Even holding the increase in global average temperatures to 2°C as outlined in the Paris climate accords (which is far from a sure thing) could mean a rise as high as 5°C in the Arctic. Current climate projections predict the Arctic will have its first ice-free summer midway through this century.
We are happy to announce Jeanne Tunks as the 2017 Most Valuable Trainer! Jeanne is currently a professor at the University of North Texas where she teaches a variety of courses, including math and social studies methods. She was introduced to the Population Education program by a colleague about 10 years ago and the rest is history!
Our large and increasing human population generates an incredible amount of waste that greatly impacts the environment and public health around the world. Recycling can make a big difference for our planet, but recycling correctly can be confusing and difficult. There are a host of myths, misconceptions and mysteries surrounding recycling, and what we can and cannot recycle.
The World of 7 Billion student video contest is back for the 2017-2018 school year, and this year’s topics are: Advancing Women and Girls, Feeding 10 Billion, and Preventing Pollution. In preparation for creating their videos, students may consider reading some contemporary books as part of their research to explore these global challenges.
In a world with more than 7.5 billion people, human overcrowding and rampant population growth is evidently distressing Earth’s systems and societies. Where do we go from here? Are we heading towards Earth’s breaking point? Why are we only asking ourselves these questions when we can also ask…renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough?!
Singapore is a small diamond-shaped island located in Southeast Asia. It is often referred to as the “Lion City” after a prince of the Srivijayan Empire spotted a Malayan Tiger on the island and mistakenly identified it as a lion. Since its independence from Malaysia in 1965, Singapore has experienced a large economic and technological boom. Today, it is referred to as one of Asia’s four economics tigers. Take our Singapore population quiz to learn more!
1. In 2016 Singapore’s population was 5.6 million. What is Singapore’s population projected to be in 2050?
As the internet transforms our lives and the way we interact with media, those who are unable to access technology can be left out of important conversations. Data from the International Telecommunications Union shows that computer and internet usage amongst youth varies radically around the world and unsurprisingly, lower income nations tend to see much lower rates of access. When at least a trillion dollars of our global economy relies on the internet, this lack of equal access means a lack of equal participation in the world.