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Educate the public about the consequences of over-population

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You have been asked to prepare a speech for the annual convention of Citizens for a Greener Planet, a national environmental group, on the idea of sustainable development. Since many of your listeners are not scientists, you want to use examples that lay people can understand. You have decided to illustrate the concept by discussing the social factors that brought about the collapse of the Easter Island civilization. You then intend to compare these events to the on-going deforestation of the Amazon rain forest. Conclude the speech by explaining what should be done to make sustainable development a reality.

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Here are some ideas I thought of and a few that I gleaned from a few references. You will need to find several others to complete this assignment.

Only some 150 square miles in area, Easter Island is a microcosm for the problems we face today. Its native inhabitants arrived in the fifth century AD and quickly established a highly advanced culture of about 7,000-15,000 people. By the 18th century, the few remaining islanders lived in a primative manner. The harsh conditions they faced are indicated in oral traditions which focus on cannibalism. To severely insult an enemy one would say: "The flesh of your mother sticks between my teeth" (Diamond 2005:109).

Little effort was required to raise crops on Easter island. This allowed for the development of a sophisticated social structure. Clans were led by chiefs and competed with each other. Among their competitions were the construction of ahus, or ceremonial areas with large statues. These immense statues required alarming amounts ...

Solution Summary

The history of Easter Island is provided in this 624 word response, along with a discussion on how the situation of the island is similar to Earth's current situation. References are included.

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You are a demographer, a person who studies population patterns. Like most demographers, you are well aware of the growth of the human population in the last century. In 1900, the earth had a population of about one and a half billion people. By 2000, earth's population had quadrupled to six billion people. Most of these people live in the developing world.

One of your responsibilities is to help educate the public about the consequences of over-population. People don't understand much about demographics, so part of your job is to put your findings into language that lay people can understand. Sometimes you are asked to give speeches to business and environmental organizations. For example, next week you are scheduled to deliver an address on sustainable development to the annual meeting of Citizens for a Greener Planet. Shortly after that, you are participating in a panel discussion at Westmont College on the causes of famine.

You have academic responsibilities as well. For example, in a few weeks, you will be presenting a paper to the World Population Council on why fertility rates remain high in developing nations. It will be a difficult issue to present, since part of your presentation will have to deal with why some developing countries have been slow to adopt contraceptive practices that are commonly used in developed nations.

In 1922, the futurist H.G. Wells predicted that human survival would depend on "the race between education and catastrophe." Wells was speaking about mankind's ability to pervert science in ways that might cause the destruction of the planet. He might have just as well been speaking about the potential of mankind to over-exploit the Earth to the point where too many people will be left competing for too few resources. It is an important part of your job to alert the public to the consequences of the population explosion, of which climate change, air and water pollution, the destruction of forests and wilderness areas, and the loss of biodiversity are the most frequently mentioned. You know that these consequences can be averted if humankind has the wisdom to maintain the balance between its needs and the resources that are available to sustain them.

Details: You decided to post the following provocative statement on your website this week for discussion, "In a market economy, food flows in the direction on economic demand. Need is not taken into consideration. To illustrate, in the event that there are hungry cats and hungry children, the food will go to the cats if the owners of the cats have money and the children's parents don't" (Wright, 2004).

Instructor Comments: All assignments must include at least two creditable sources listed on the reference page in accordance with APA guidelines. You must include in-text citations in the body of the paper for each source listed on the reference page. Please include an introduction paragraph that transitions to the main body of your paper and a strong conclusion paragraph that wraps up your argument or thesis with all assignments. This is in addition to the minimum Deliverable Length of all assignments. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me and I will be glad to assist.

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