The year I was born there were 4.7 billion people on the face of the Earth. A staggering number to be sure. In the 28 years I have been alive, however, the work population has grown by almost 70%. 70% growth does not seem significant until you consider the fact that world population did not reach 1 billion until 1804. For world population to surge by 6 billion people in a little over 200 years is quite a feat of technology, medicine, and sanitation.
This week the 7 billionth person was welcomed into a home somewhere on Earth. Considered on a global scale, the addition of one person seems insignificant at best. The number 7 billion, however, raises deep questions of sustainability and equality. Will there be enough food for the 7 billionth child? Will that child have access to education and safe drinking water? Will he or she be exposed to a preventable disease that will cut the precious life short? Will education even be an option? Will the child be a great thinker who will come up with the answers to these questions and solutions to queries we didn't even know we had.
In celebration of the 7 billionth person, take some time this week to enjoy the crisp fall air and consider how you can help make the world a better place for the baby that marks world population 8 billion.
It's only 13 years away ...
National Geographic just put together a terrific piece on world population 7 billion. Check it out here World Population: A National Geographic Tour