Is the unchecked mass immigration from 3rd World countries, to Europe and USA, the first stages of a global fight over food and resources? Are we witnessing a live or die scramble for resources already, but which is being diffused and incorrectly translated as cultural, supremacist or religious motives?
Are the UN, UNHCR and ICC part of the problem instead of the solution? Are they overwhelmed or incompetent or is it deliberate failure due to political correctness or other more sinister theories? Is their lack of spine or teeth structural or political? Given UNHCR data released this week, showing that over 1% of the worlds population is now displaced or are refugees, this is certainly a valid question. Migration from Asia with a comparatively higher populations density seems to concur, however migration from Africa, which has low population density, to areas of much higher population densities, seem to indicate other reasons and raises questions.
The African and Asian populations have literally exploded in the last century making world population mushroom a massive 7 fold, from a mere 1 Billion in 1850 to 7 Billion today! This unchecked growth has pushed mankind into the 6th Mass Extinction event according to scientists at Princeton, Stanford and UC Berkeley.
Separately, Eminent Australian scientist Professor Frank Fenner, who helped to wipe out smallpox, predicts humans will probably be extinct within 100 years, because of overpopulation, environmental destruction and climate change.
Fenner, who is emeritus professor of microbiology at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra, said homo sapiens will not be able to survive the population explosion and “unbridled consumption,” and will become extinct, perhaps within a century, along with many other species. United Nations official figures from last year estimate the human population is 6.8 billion, and is predicted to pass seven billion next year.
Fenner told The Australian he tries not to express his pessimism because people are trying to do something, but keep putting it off. He said he believes the situation is irreversible, and it is too late because the effects we have had on Earth since industrialization (a period now known to scientists unofficially as the Anthropocene) rivals any effects of ice ages or comet impacts.
Fenner said that climate change is only at its beginning, but is likely to be the cause of our extinction. “We’ll undergo the same fate as the people on Easter Island,” he said. More people means fewer resources, and Fenner predicts “there will be a lot more wars over food.”
Easter Island is famous for its massive stone statues. Polynesian people settled there, in what was then a pristine tropical island, around the middle of the first millennium AD. The population grew slowly at first and then exploded. As the population grew the forests were wiped out and all the tree animals became extinct, both with devastating consequences. After about 1600 the civilization began to collapse, and had virtually disappeared by the mid-19th century. Evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond said the parallels between what happened on Easter Island and what is occurring today on the planet as a whole are “chillingly obvious.”
While many scientists are also pessimistic, others are more optimistic. Among the latter is a colleague of Professor Fenner, retired professor Stephen Boyden, who said he still hopes awareness of the problems will rise and the required revolutionary changes will be made to achieve ecological sustainability. “While there’s a glimmer of hope, it’s worth working to solve the problem. We have the scientific knowledge to do it but we don’t have the political will,” Boyden said.
Fenner should know, at 95, he is the author or co-author of 22 books and 290 scientific papers and book chapters. His announcement in 1980 to the World Health Assembly that smallpox had been eradicated is still seen as one of the World Health Organisation’s greatest achievements.
Professor Fenner has had a lifetime interest in the environment, and from 1973 to 1979 was Director of the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at ANU. He is currently a visiting fellow at the John Curtin School of Medical Research at the university, and is a patron of Sustainable Population Australia. He has won numerous awards including the ANZAC Peace Prize, the WHO Medal, and the Albert Einstein World Award of Science. He was awarded an MBE for his work on control of malaria in New Guinea during the Second World War, in which Fenner served in the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps.
Estimates of population evolution in different continents between 1950 and 2050, according to the United Nations is shown in the graph below. The vertical axis is in millions of people.
6th Mass Extinction already here as species disappear 100 times faster.
The world is on the brink of its sixth mass extinction, as animals are disappearing 100 times faster than previously, scientists warned in a new report. They also say humanity could be among the first victims of this extinction.
There is no longer any doubt: We are entering a mass extinction that threatens humanity’s existence. That is the bad news at the center of a new study by a group of scientists including Paul Ehrlich, the Bing Professor of Population Studies in biology and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. Ehrlich and his co-authors call for fast action to conserve threatened species, populations and habitat, but warn that the window of opportunity is rapidly closing.
According to these Princeton, Stanford and UC Berkeley scientists, rates like these have not been seen since the last age of the dinosaurs some 66 million years ago. Paul Ehlrich of Stanford says the data“shows without any significant doubt that we are now entering the sixth great mass extinction event.”
The data demonstrates “without any significant doubt that we are now entering the sixth great mass extinction event,” Ehlrich, whose work on the disappearance of species dates back to 1980, said.
The report has been drawn to counter critics who believe the data is exaggerated. Ehlrich and co-authors seek to demonstrate, using conservative assumptions, that the new phase is already well under way, seeing as they are “far above the ‘background’ rates prevailing in the five preceding mass extinctions.”
The background rate is the normal rate of disappearance between mass extinctions.
“If it is allowed to continue, life would take many millions of years to recover, and our species itself would likely disappear early on,” lead author Gerardo Ceballos of the Universidad Autonoma de Mexico said in support.
The team used a past extinction rate that was twice as high as the estimates widely used in previous studies, and compared that rate to the most conservative estimates. In this way, they brought the two approximate rates as close to each other as possible – the current and all-time background rates.
The researchers argue that if the past rate was two mammal extinctions out of 10,000 species over 100 years, then the “average rate of vertebrate species loss over the last century is up to 114 times higher than it would be without human activity, even when relying on the most conservative estimates of species extinction.”
They add that their “calculations very likely underestimate the severity of the extinction crisis because our aim was to place a realistic lower band on humanity’s impact on biodiversity.”
The International Union for Conservation of Nature backs up the alarming news, providing a threat level of 26 percent for mammals and 41 percent for amphibians – Elrich calls those who made it into the statistic “the walking dead.”
“Averting a dramatic decay of biodiversity and the subsequent loss of ecosystem services is still possible through intensified conservation efforts, but that window of opportunity is rapidly closing,” the scientists say.
There is a man-made causal chain that leads to biodiversity reduction, habitat loss, deforestation, overexploitation of resources and other evils. As species disappear, so do the key ecosystem services provided by bee pollination, as well as wetlands water purification. The researchers say we stand to lose many of those biodiversity benefits within three generations. As Ehlrich puts it,“We are sawing the limb that we are sitting on.”
The authors hope their study, published in Science Advances, will serve to influence policy and propel conservation efforts forward before the changes become completely irreversible.