‘Ten Billion’ is about us. It is about you, your children, your parents, your friends. It is about every one of us. It is about our failure: failure as individuals, the failure of business, and the failure of our politicians.
It is about deforestation, desertification and species extinction. It is about global warming and growing threats to food and water. It is about an unprecedented planetary emergency. It is about the future of us.
Finite sources of energy will eventually become extinct, especially at our rate of consumption. Some tables have oil use declining at five percent a year after 2040.
Gas is expected to decline even faster. Hydro energy and renewable energy (such as wind and solar power) are expected to see continued increasing use, and should become our primary sources of power by 2100 and beyond.
An increasingly globalized World will mean more and more people taking their talents abroad, crossing borders to find better opportunities. Diversity will become more common in countries that now have general ethnic homogeneity, as Americans travel to Asia and an even bigger melting pot in Europe. Countries and cities that do not go after global talent will fall behind.
Increased urbanization will be one of the main ways the planet will sustain 10 billion people. There will be a lot of new cities, and mega-cities (cities with a population over 20 million) will become more common. Candidates for mega-city status include Beijing, Delhi, Jakarta, Mexico City, Mumbai, São Paulo, and Shanghai.
Previous predictions had estimated the global population would hit 9 billion by the middle of the century, but the latest forecasts now puts it at 8.6 billion by 2030, 9.8 billion in 2050 and 11.2 billion in 2100. Roughly 83 million people are added to the global population each year.
Africa is leading the charge in terms of population growth, and the research states India will take over China as the World’s most populous country by 2024.
It is feared a worldwide population of 9 billion would put a strain on global resources leading to global famine. The World has ignored the ominous constellation of factors that now make feeding humanity sustainably our most pressing task – even in times of economic and climatic crisis. It is arriving even faster than climate change.