Population threat linked to global warming

January 6, 2006

Global warming cannot be addressed without the international community addressing the problem of population growth, a British scientist says.

Chris Rapley, the director of the British Antarctic Survey, says the annual increase in the world's population of 76 million people threatens "the welfare and quality of life of future generations," reported the Independent Friday.

Population growth was the "Cinderella" issue of the environmental debate, because no one dares to raise it because of controversy.

Some scientists suggest that the Earth can sustain 2 billion to 3 billion people at a good standard of living over the long term, but the current population of 6.5 billion -- expected to rise to 8 billion -- will leave an ever greater "footprint" on the planet, Rapley wrote in an article for the BBC News Web site.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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