Thanks to Emily Frazier for this important article. See http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/gpr/14/3/gpr140302.html For the full report, see http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/Contraceptive-Technologies.pdf
Guttmacher Policy Review
Summer 2011, Volume 14, Number 3
The World at Seven Billion: Global Milestone A Reflection of Individual Needs
By Susan A. Cohen
According to the United Nations, the world’s population will reach seven billion later this year and, if current trends continue, will rise to more than nine billion by the middle of this century.1 This new population milestone-and the projection-prompt renewed debates about the balance between population size and consumption of natural resources, about age structure and political stability, and about the consequences of rapid population growth rates for poor countries’ ability to develop economically.
These relationships and others pertaining to population size and the rate of population growth are complex and their implications often controversial. To a large extent, however, these macro-level dilemmas reflect a micro-level problem about which there is a universal consensus and where the solution is relatively straightforward. Millions of women and couples, especially in the developing world, are still unable to control for themselves the timing, spacing and total number of their children. Recognition of this fact provides a road map for moving forward that can address the needs of the people and the planet at the same time.
That path forward must include a central focus on increasing access and eliminating barriers to voluntary contraceptive services. Responding directly to individual people’s needs and desires to determine for themselves whether and when to have a child will contribute significantly toward their ability to lead healthier, more productive lives. In turn, these benefits for individuals and families accrue to their communities and to society at large. Ultimately, the impact would be felt at the global level. Meeting the stated desires of all women around the world to space or limit births would result in the world’s population peaking within the next few decades-and then actually starting to decline.
To read the full article, please click here: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/gpr/14/3/gpr140302.html
Current World Population
Net Growth During Your Visit