Random Facts

As the research for this book continues, I thought I would post an occasional interesting fact or two as I stumble across them. Like I said, the book is mostly fiction.

  • Humanity reached 1 billion in population around the year 1800.
  • 130 years later, in 1930, we reached 2 billion.
  • 30 years later, in 1960, we reached 3 billion.
  • 15 years later, in 1975, we reached 4 billion.
  • 12 years later, in 1987, we reached 5 billion.
  • 12 years later, in 1999, we reached 6 billion.
  • 13 years later, in 2012, we reached 7 billion.
  • Predictions to reach 10 billion range anywhere from 2050 to 2065. Or never.

But as usual, to me these statistics hide a more fundamental truth. The issue is not simply world population, it’s population combined with the amount of resources consumed. As an example – the average American consumes 32 times more resources than the average citizen of Kenya. In other words, if we could improve the standard of living for everyone on the planet so they lived like the average American, we would create a world where  we would need to provide food, clothing, and shelter for today’s equivalent of 70 billion people.

How would that work?

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