Predictions of Environmental Doom

Discussion in 'Earth Science' started by madanthonywayne, Apr 21, 2011.

  1. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    I had to spell it out for you?
    You weren't able to infer it for yourself from the context of the discussion?
    It didn't occur to you at any stage that sociopolitical trends and pressures might be important in regulating immigration - a factor that has been aknowledged as a growth pressure right from the beginning of the discussion?

    I've given three specific examples, that you have thus far refused to address.

    I'm fairly sure that Germany illustrates this statement to be baloney.

    And there you go again, off on some tangent because you haven't understood the point being made.

    Only Germany's border isn't closed to its neighbouting countries, it's open, more open in fact than it has been since WW I.

    It's political asylum that's been restricted, and only because, as I'm fairly sure I've already mentioned, the German constitution automatically granted it to all those who sought it.

    Utter bollocks.

    You keep harping on about sustainability, but what are you actually afraid of?

    Running out of food?

    If the world were to subsist on wheat, and everybody in the world were to consume 750g of wheat per day, which is sufficient to provide them with a luxurious 2700 cal per day, and exceeds the RDI of almost all (major) nutrients and such - except calcium, then supporting 10 billion people 2,737 Mt of wheat to be produced annualy. This would require 3.4 million km^2 in total of land area to be used for the cultivation of wheat. It's been estimated that there are 5.5 million km^2 available for such use, of which we actually only need about half for additional wheat production for a population of 10 billion people to be sustainable. Incidentally, women only need 2000 cal/day, and make up about half the population, so it would have been more reasonable to use 2350 cal as an estimate, however...

    Running out of water?

    10 Billion human beings require 438 km[sup]3[/sup] of water per yer, for all uses, and assuming that everybody everywhere is uses wet reticulation for effluent disposal. This can be reduced to 365 km[sup]3[/sup] per year if everybody everywhere is using water saving fixtures. There are globally, 505,000 km[sup]3[/sup] of rainfall annually, of which 107,000 fall on land. So, again, from the perspective of water consumption, a population of 10 billion can be sustainable.


    You've already demonstrated that if we're willing to sacrifice our deserts, and risk the climate changes associated with the changes in albedo (which might be able to offset by changes elsewhere, restricting climactic effects to local) then we've got plenty of energy to spare.

    And all of this is only considering land based technologies, land making up only 25% of the surface of the earth, I've given no thought, for example, to things like hybrid solar-thermal-otec desalinization plants, OTEC power generation, or intensive aquacultural farming of kelp. All of which would ease the pressure on land based resources.

    It seems to me then that a population of 10 Billion people is sustainable, and even populations of 15-20 billion people may be sustainable, with investments in the right technologies, and as long as we can work on our small minded nationalistic ideaologies and traditions, and realize that we're part of a global environment and need to approach survival on a similar level.
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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    It occurred to me that making you specify exactly what trends and pressures you were going to assume to be fixed for generations to come would highlight the absurdity of such an assumption - but that's proving difficult.
    Uh, no, you haven't. Not even one, yet. I'm not sure what the problem is here - you seem oblivious to the nature of the issue. We keep reading things like this, from you:
    The fact that you overlook very simple, obvious factors that - unless handled, responded to in some way - more or less invalidate your entire argument here, is not strange, perhaps - all too familiar, actually - but geez: how much repetition do you need?
    Not according to the population graphs posted here - they seem reasonably accurate to me. They show Germany's population increasing, with occasional pauses, since WWII - the people born during WWII are just now dying of old age.
    With arguments like those the idiot crowd long ago proved the entire population of the planet could live in Texas, or in a space station of fairly reasonable dimensions. All that needs changing (spontaneously?) is human politics, economics, diet, dominant applied technologies, and possibly aspects of basic nature - by about 2050.

    If a better argument for incoming doom is available, I haven't run across it.
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  5. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    Now you're just being absurd, and rude.

    The problem isn't that I'm oblivious to the nature of the issue, quite the opposite, it's that I'm acutely aware of the nature of the issue, and I've already followed it through to several outcomes, and worked out which one I consider to be the most likely. You have just been unable to keep up, and unwilling to read the material provided to you in this thread.

    This next statement somewhat illustrates my point:
    At no point have you shown any inclination to stop and consider what drove the growth spurts, and whether or not that driving forces themselves are sustainable.

    So... Now you're addressing facts and figures with absurdity insults?

    Show me again where I suggested (for example) that a change in dietary behaviour was neccessary?

    Oh wait, that's right, I didn't.

    Maybe if you took the time to read what I'm actually saying, from time to time, you and I would have fewer misunderstandings.
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  7. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    On the contrary, I have throughout been explicitly taking into account the possibility (I refer to it as an observation, actually) that the driving forces behind the growth spurts of various regions and the overall population boom are not going to sustain further increase very much longer. That's the doomsayers' basic observation and premise for extrapolation.

    It could be wrong. If the driving forces are thought to be adjuncts to technological advance of essentially infinite future progression and capability, essentially or relevantly free of the ecological analogs to Le Chatelier's Principle that are otherwise fundamental to growth and form in the world, then we might be able to set aside such considerations, depending on the details.

    Otherwise, the question before us, since we agree that the booms are going to end, is how they are going to be shut down. Whatever has been occasionally and temporarily curbing Germany's is not, apparently, enough in itself - at least not for a small region like Germany.
  8. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    Sorry - Got distracted by expanding earth nonsense, among other things.

    This is part of the point that I was trying to make/address though.
    The forces driving the growth were political, and they were one off forces that are unlikely to be repeated. The Berlin Wall won't fall a second time, there can't be another Perestroika, agreements can't be signed twice (although there can be additional signatories). These were all one off events that had the net effect of encouraging people to migrate to Germany, even while the 'naturalized population' continued to decline.

    Traditionally Germany has been a target for North African asylum seekers because its laws in that regard let pretty much anybody in. They tightened tehre laws to make it harder - a move which generated much controversy at the time, this reduced significantly the number of people migrating to Germany, and coincides with the beginning of the second plateu. This suggest (to me at least) that short of some kind of major social or political upheval (comparable say, to Perestroika, or the fal of the wall) that Germany's population will continue to plateu unless some external force is applied to it.

    That's all I'm suggesting. That the first plateu would have continued if those political forces hadn't been applied to it, and that the current plateu will continue unless some external force is applied to it. If I was asked to speculate, I might speculate that such an external force might be related to some of the worst case scenarios for climate change, with people being forced to migrate because, for one reason or another (changes in temperature, rainfall, or sea level, for example) where they were living is no longer livable. Balanced against that is - my perception at least, that the US and Europe seem to be becoming increasingly Xenophobic. Then there's also the observation that even though this might force a period of growth in the German population, the evidence suggests that because migrants tend to assimilate into their host population, that such refugees (or whatever you want to call them) will tend to have lower birthrates in their host country than their home country, with a net result that a reduction of population growth still occurs when one considers the combined totals of the host and home countries.
  9. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Germany has been a target for emigrants because it is prosperous. That is an effect of prosperity - it attracts people, who then add to the population.

    If there is some reason for thinking attempts to curb such an influx - which feeds the prosperity, and rewards the prosperous, btw - are other than temporary political interferences with a more basic and inevitable pattern, what is it?

    We have no examples of prosperity maintaining a stable population level for very long in any locality. While that cannot be ruled out as a possibility, as an unprecedented situation it is far from clearly inevitable.
  10. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    All I can do here, really, is repeat what I have already said - that the segment of the immigrant population that's been driving the growth, appears to be refugees, and Germany changed their constitution to make it harder for refugees to get into the country.

    Short of some major catastrophy of a global scale, I'm not sure I see European politics getting any less xenophobic. I might be wrong, they might surprise me, but that's just my opnion.
  11. wellwisher Banned Banned

    Prosperous countries don't mind an influx of immigrants if there is assimulation. Normal immigration laws screen people to make sure they want to be on the track of assimulation as part of the family.

    The people who migrate to prosperous countries, come from poorer countries which don't do very well and lack opportunities. If there is no assimulation, what happens is the mindset of the host culture "prosperity", becomes water down with a mindset that is more condusive to lack of prosperity and opportunity (the old ways they originally ran from). Many immigrants are trying to escape the lack of opportunity and/or corruption mindset. Lack of assimulation perpetuates this frustration and corruption and averages it into the host country.

    The liberal groups within prosperous cultures, to spare feelings, cater to the very behavior, which drives immigrants to leave their country. They are encourage then not to assimulate to the majority POV, which is responsibile for giving them the courage to leave their country in the first place. Instead of becoming part of the family prosperity, via assimulation, they take away from the prosperity through welfare, to help support the poor mindset they ran away from.

    Here is an analogy. You invite a neighbor to stay with you over the summer. The question becomes, what is better for your family and household, the neighbor honoring your family by learning to assimulate to the way of your household? Or is it better to alter your entire household behavior to cater to them? If the second case, they won't be invited the next summer; barriers appear. But if they willinglu become an extended part of the family, they will be welcome again and again.

    A good immigation policy is not about closed borders but about welcoming those who wish to join the family. The unwelcome guest is not welcome by all.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2011

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