World Population Growth and Control


The world population has grown at a very drastic rate for the last two thousand years. It is estimated that the current population is approximately six and a half billion people. It is projected that by the year 2050, the world population will be approximately nine and a half billion people (Rosenberg, 1). This rapid growth become an issue of much concern and calls in for mechanisms to regulate this growth of the population especially putting in to consideration that the increase in population puts much pressure on the available resources.

Population Control

This can be taken as any measures taken in controlling the location, type as well as the number of the populace occupying the globe. The methods of population control include birth control that may make use such techniques as use of contraceptives, abstinence, and sterilization among others. Other methods may involve setting up government policies such as one child one family policy, abortion legalization among others. The intention of carrying out population control is to ensure that the available resources can satisfy the needs of people within the population without some suffering from their shortage. By maintaining the population at a level that it be manageable will ensure social well being to each and every individual within the society.

Political and ethical views on population control

According to Cook (1), the issue of population control sometimes gives out a negative message. He argues that the methods employed in the course of population control put off the blessing of conception, the children that are not born, and parenthood. The notion that population growth increases poverty dismiss the value of children.

According to Dwyer-Frazier (5), the women’s right to the freedom of reproducing was a monumental success for the feminist movement in the United States of America. More so, the advantages of birth control to the physical health of women are as well of great importance. The reduction in the total number of pregnancies and the increase of the duration between giving birth are quite significant in bringing about childbirth in women that are much more safe and healthy. The control of population may be of no use and not necessary to addressing the “Population explosion” but it brings about positive impacts that may be of significance just the same way as its primary goal.

Historical Background on Population control Ideology (Thomas Malthus)

Thomas Robert Malthus is believed to be the father of population control. He was born in the year 1766. He played a part of introducing a far-reaching fresh way of looking at the turbulent social state of affairs in England. He had a belief that man naturally had the capacity to bring up his population in a geometric pattern. He believed that the human power to multiply could never be fully realized, but on the basis of the United States double increase in population in the recent times within a period of twenty five years, he made claims that it could securely be declared that when population is not checked, it progresses upwards geometrically in such a manner that it becomes double within a period of every twenty five years. On the other had, Malthus makes claims that, it is quite unfortunate to realize that food production progresses upwards only arithmetically. In the words of Malthus himself, he sums up this claim as follows: “Population when unchecked increases in a geometrical ratio. Substinence increases only in an arithmetic ratio. A slight acquaintance with numbers will show the immensity of the first power in comparison with the second.” (Anonymous 6)

Nevertheless, Malthus had a mind that humanity had hardly lived up to its capability to multiply in twice its number after every two and a half decades and hardly it possibly would. The rate of producing food could not sustain for a longer time an increase in population of this nature and wouldn’t take a longer time before nature took control of this population growth. According to Malthus’ claims, nature has time and again been imposing a check to bring about a balance between these two forces that are competing with one another, that is, population growth and growth in food production. The checks talked about by Malthus are of two forms; positive checks and preventive checks. The definition given by Malthus of the preventive checks is that they are a foresight of the problems associated with bringing up families. These are ways which people can work in an active way to avoid drastic growing of the population from coming about. If these kinds of checks are not employed in an appropriate manner through the effort of human beings and population goes up as a consequence of failing to bring about a balance between the two forces, at this point there is need for the positive checks to set in. Positive checks in this case are those causes that make a contribution to make short a human life and may include extreme poverty, severe labor, bad caring of young children, wars, diseases and epidemics, famine among others.

Malthus believes that these can be achieved via moral self-control. Human beings are thus, capable of bringing down the stress of the population growth by portraying moral self-control and practicing a preventive check on population in a manner such as marrying at a later time. Malthus did not support contraception. On the other hand, he notes, if man is unable to practice the moral self-control (and he believed man could not be able to practice this because of the sexual desires within him), then population must be brought down by the positive checks of the forces of misery and vice that will be in form of war, famine, and diseases (Anonymous 7).

Examples of population control; (case of China, India and Iran)

China is the most populated country in the world having more than 1.2 billion people thus forming approximately twenty one percent of the world population. This country is in danger of encountering social and economic problems in the coming time due to this high population. A one-child policy was introduced way back in the year 1979, as an effort to bring about population control. This entails that each family is only allowed to have one child. Other methods of population control used here include birth control programs and economic changes.

Taking the case of Iran, this country has succeeded in bringing down the birth rate in the years that have just passed. This is a country that is the only one where mandatory contraceptive courses are required for women as well as men before a certificate of marriage can be issued. The government of Iran puts much emphasis on the importance of having families that are small as well as the use of contraception.

Considering India, this is the second largest populated country in the world before China. Its population is increasing rapidly and it is even estimated that by the year 2025, India will be ahead of China. The Indian government is committed to promote population control but it has been realized that during the last three decades or even more, there has been a big gap between actual planning and implementation. Control of population has not been effectively exercised and that is why the population in the country goes on increasing (Sarin, 2001).

Population Forecasting and Challenges for the 21st Century

In the coming decades, several things are likely; the world population is expected to go beyond the present six billion although it may start going down in the course of the second half of the coming century. The population distribution will go on tilting to LDCs from MDCs and it will go on to age. This increase in the population in the course of this century poses several challenges especially putting in to consideration that much pressure will be put on the available resources (Lutz, 1).


It is of great importance for all the nations in the world to consider this issue of population increase especially in the course of this century and the dangers that are associated with this increase. Each and every nation should come up with measures to deal with this problem and ensure effective implementation of these measures to realize positive results.

Works Cited

Anonymous. “The Inherent Racism of Population Control”. 2004. Web.

Cook, Jamie. “Population control in China and its consequences”. Unpublished. 1999. Web.

Dwyer-Frazier, Erin. “Population control: A social Perspective”. ENVS. 2009.

Lutz, Wolfgang. “World population in the 21st Century”. Millennium. 2009.

Rosenberg, Matt. “Current World, a part of The New York Times Company. 2009. Web.

Sarin, Ash. “India: Population-Control – A Dismal Record of Non-Performance – Statistical Data Included.” CBS Interactive Inc. 2001. Web.