Was Malthus Right

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Human Geography February 2014 Was Malthus Right? Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) who in 1798, made a dire prediction: He said the Earth could not indefinitely support an ever-increasing human population. The planet, he said, would check population growth through famine if humans didn't check themselves. The theory publicized by Malthus is known as the carrying capacity of Earth. Carrying capacity itself is a well-known and widely accepted concept in ecology. There is a certain population number above which a species starts to damage its habitat, and life as it stands at that moment cannot go on. Typically, it's starvation that kicks in to cull the herds down to a manageable number. One of the critics of Malthus was Friedrich Engels who criticized him because Malthus failed to see that surplus population is…show more content…
The figure on the right shows the trend of total population from 1800 to 2005 and from there in three projections out to 2100 (low, medium, and high). The second figure shows the annual growth rate over the same period. If population growth were exactly exponential, then the growth rate would be a flat line. The fact that it was increasing from 1920 to 1960 indicates faster-than-exponential growth over this period. However, the growth rate has been decreasing since then, and is projected to continue decreasing. The United Nations population projections out to 2100 (the red, orange, and green lines) show a possible peak in the world's population occurring as early as 2040. (contributors) The demographic transition is a model and theory that usually occurs in 4 stages describing the transition from high birth and death rates to low birth and death rates that occurs as part of the economic development of a country. All countries undergo a transition during which death rates fall but birth rates remain high. Consequently, population grows rapidly. See demographic

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