Wednesday, November 10

If this doesn't cause you to stop and think for a moment, nothing will.

What it tells me is that life as we experience it right now (and more generally, in the last couple hundred years) is nothing like that which people have experienced throughout 99% of human history, not to mention human existence (our evolution as a distinct species). This graph only goes back as far as the agricultural revolution after the last ice age, when farming and animal husbandry were both developed, and people began the process of settling down  giving up hundreds of thousands of year or more of nomadic existence.

By the way, we're already closing in on 7 Billion and could reach it late next year, according to UN estimates.

Where're one of those asteroids when you need them...


billybytedoc said...

You should graph life expectancy along with it. Probably would look similar.

Metamatician said...

Yeah, not quite as exponential, but a long time of about 30 years old and then suddenly up to about 80 over the last few hundred years.

But developing countries still have low life expectancy. There's a big gulf between someone living in Nigeria and someone living in France.

Birth rates in the industrialized world have basically leveled off, and are not increasing much even in the third world, but as you mention death rates are declining all across the board but especially in developed countries. That's what's causing the population to skyrocket at the moment, the "greying" of the planet.

In the United States and Europe, the average age is about 35. In Sub-Saharan Africa it is about 18.

Hans said...

"something's gotta give, something's gotta give"

not sure what, but natural disasters happen and we're probably due. Mother earth can only feed so many kids at a time.

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