Can the world feed 7 billion people?

Over the years, environmentalists have claimed that the world’s ever-increasing population would soon surpass the planets inadequate resources leading to an environmental calamity of horrendous magnitude. In simple terms, a massive worldwide famine was just around the corner because people would keep increasing but the amount of food would stay the same or worse, decline. According to such experts, the only way to lessen the sternness of the impending disaster was to implement strict policies to control population. Personally, I don’t understand how the people who call these experts ‘a bluff’ don’t see the sense in all this. How can they not see that, 7 billion is too big a price?

Over the years, environmentalists have claimed that the world’s ever-increasing population would soon surpass the planets inadequate resources leading to an environmental calamity of horrendous magnitude. In simple terms, a massive worldwide famine was just around the corner because people would keep increasing but the amount of food would stay the same or worse, decline.

According to such experts, the only way to lessen the sternness of the impending disaster was to implement strict policies to control population. Personally, I don’t understand how the people who call these experts ‘a bluff’ don’t see the sense in all this. How can they not see that, 7 billion is too big a price?

A food crisis in 2009 saw about 10 million Kenyans face starvation which is nothing compared to the famine hovering in Somalia and it’s neighboring countries. Africa’s biggest problem has probably been poverty because that is what causes every other problem there is to face.

The more people are born, the slimmer the chances of having a hunger free world are. Even households with people having jobs often find themselves in the predicament of not being able to afford a meal sometimes. One can’t help but wonder that if even the income earners go to bed hungry sometimes, what hope is there for the less fortunate?

The causes of poverty include poor people’s lack of resources, an extremely unequal income distribution in the world and within specific countries, conflict, and hunger itself. In terms of unequal income distribution, some people make so much money that it is a wonder how there is any left for others to make. It is saddening how the less opportune work diligently to make ends meet and still after a long period, have absolutely nothing to show for it.

No one really knows how many people in the world are starving but according to the most recent estimate released in October 2010 by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, 925 million people were undernourished. Under nutrition is a moderately new concept but, is increasingly used.  It should be taken as similar to malnutrition. People should understand the seriousness of it now if the current economic crisis is anything to go by.

In round numbers there are 7 billion people in the world. Thus, with an estimated 925 million hungry people in the world, 13.1 percent, or almost 1 in every 7 people are hungry. So the question remains; does the world have enough food to feed to feed 7 billion people? Apparently, the world produces enough food to feed everyone. The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow their own crops or income to purchase enough food.

World food prices that increased dramatically in 2007 and part of 2008 created a global crisis that caused political and economic instability and social unrest in both poor and developed countries. With all the conflict going on in the world, it is no wonder that food is an issue. Many have been left homeless and helpless with only the help of NGO’s to get them through life if they didn’t already die on the streets somewhere. What should be done besides being strict about birth control? A conflict free world would be one step to better living for everyone.

rachelgaruka@yahoo.co.uk

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