Team Essay

Topics: Agriculture, Population growth, World population Pages: 26 (8744 words) Published: June 15, 2013
POPULATION GROWTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION IN INDIA
By Dr. Dewaram A. Nagdeve* ABSTRACT The present paper examined the relationship of population to the environment and with growing population, poverty and urbanization the environment is degrading. Conducted an analysis of changes and trends over last fifty years. The study reveals that the country's population growth is imposing an increasing burden on the country's limited and continually degrading natural resource base. The natural resources are under increasing strain, even though the majority of people survive at subsistence level. Population pressure on arable land contributes to the land degradation. The increasing population numbers and growing affluence have already resulted in rapid growth of energy production and consumption in India. The environmental effects like ground water and surface water contamination; air pollution and global warming are of growing concern owing to increasing consumption levels. The paper concludes with some policy reflections, the policy aimed at overall development should certainly include efforts to control population and environmental pollution.

Reader, Department of Fertility Studies, International Institute for Population Sciences, Govandi Station Road, Deonar, Mumbai 400 088, INDIA. Email: dnagdeve@yahoo.com and dnagdeve@iips.net

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POPULATION GROWTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION IN INDIA
Introduction The rapid population growth and economic development in country are degrading the environment through the uncontrolled growth of urbanization and industrialization, expansion and intensification of agriculture, and the destruction of natural habitats. One of the major causes of environmental degradation in India could be attributed to rapid growth of population, which is adversely affecting the natural resources and environment. The growing population and the environmental deterioration face the challenge of sustained development without environmental damage. The existence or the absence of favorable natural resources can facilitate or retard the process of economic development. The three fundamental demographic factors of births, deaths and migration produce changes in population size; composition, distribution and these changes raise a number of important questions of cause and effect. Population Reference Bureau estimated the 6.14 billion world's population in mid 2001. Contribution of India alone to this population was estimated to be 1033 millions. It is estimated that the country’s population will increase to 1.26 billion by the year 2016. The projected population indicates that India will be a first most populous country in the world and China will be second in 2050 (Population Reference Bureau, 2001). The increase of population has been tending towards alarming situation. India is having 18 percent of the world's population on 2.4 percent of its land area has great deal of pressure on its all natural resources. Water shortages, soil exhaustion, deforestation, air and water pollution afflicts many areas. If the world population continues to multiply, the impact on environment could be devastating. As the 21st century begins, growing number of people and rising levels of consumption per capita are depleting natural resources and degrading the environment. The poverty-environmental damage nexus in India must be seen in the context of population growth as well. The pressures on the environment intensify every day as the population grows. The rapid increase of human numbers combines with desperate poverty and rising levels of consumption are depleting natural resources on which the livelihood of present and future generations depends. Poverty, is amongst the consequences of population growth and its life style play major role in depleting the environment 2

either its fuel demands for cooking or for earning livelihood for their survival. The unequal distribution of resources and limited opportunities cause push...

References: (1) Brandon Carter and Kirsten Honmann, (1991-92), "Valuing Environmental Costs in India: The Economy Wide Impact of Environment Degradation", World Bank, mimeo. (2) Central Bureau of Health Intelligence, (1995 & 1996), Health Information of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, New Delhi. (3) Central Statistical Organisation, (1999 & 2000), "Compendium of Environment Statistics", Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India, New Delhi. (4) Central Statistical Organisation, (1999), "Statistical Abstract of India", Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India, New Delhi. (5) Central Statistical Organisation, (2002), "Selected Socio-Economic Statistics", Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India, New Delhi. (6) Centre for Science and Environment, (1982), "Citizen 's Report" The State of India 's Environment, New Delhi). (7) Department of Agriculture and Cooperation, (2002), "Indian Agriculture in Brief", Directorate of Economics and Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, New Delhi. (8) Energy Information Administration, 2001, International Energy Outlook, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Integrated Analysis and Forecasting, Washington, D.C. (9) International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS) and ORC Macro, 2000, India: National Family Health Survey (NFHS-2), 1998-99, Mumbai, India. (10) Government of India, (1997), Estimates of Poverty, Planning Commission, Government of India: Press Information Bureau, March 1997, New Delhi. (11) Government of India, (1999), "Economic Survey: 1998-99", Ministry of Finance, Economic Division, New Delhi. (12) Government of India, (2001), The State of Forest Report, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Forest Survey of India, Dehradun. (13) Government of India, (2003), "Economic Survey: 2002-2003", Ministry of Finance, Economic Division, New Delhi. (14) Government of India, (2003), Basic Statistics on Indian Petroleum and Natural Gas, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, New Delhi. (15) Mishra, V. K.; Retherford, R. D. and Kirk R. Smith, 1999, "Biomass cooking fuels and prevalence of tuberculosis in India", International Journal of Infectious Diseases, 3, (3), 119-29. (16) Population Reference Bureau (PRB), 2001, World population data sheet, Washington, D.C. (17) Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India, (2001), "Provisional Population Totals", Census of India, Paper 1 of 2001, New Delhi. (18) Registrar General of India, (1981-2001), "Sample Registration System, Statistical Reports
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1981-2001, New Delhi. Transport Research Wing, (1997 & 2003), "Pocket Book on Transport Statistics in India", Ministry of Surface Transport, Government of India, New Delhi. UNDP, 1998, "Unequal Impacts of Environment Damage", Human Development Report 1998, Oxford University Press, New York.
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