Where Population Pressures Have Deadly Consequences

January 5, 2012 • Violence, Africa, Daily Email Recap

From the Boston area’s NPR news station, 90.9 WBUR, comes this “Here And Now” program segment. To hear audio interviews and watch a slide show, go to: http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2011/12/01/where-population-pressures-have-deadly-consequences

Where Population Pressures Have Deadly Consequences

By Alex Ashlock

“The competition for finite resources has led to power grabs, the shredding of the bio-diversity… and the pitting of one ethnic group against another.”

-Robert Draper, reporter

With the world population now topping 7 billion, the November issue of National Geographic opens a window on a place where population pressures are having deadly consequences.

Africa’s Albertine Rift is a 920-mile crease or rift formed by shifting plate tectonics, where the countries of Uganda, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania and Burundi all meet.

It’s the continent’s most bio-diverse region, with highland forests, snow-capped mountains, savannas, great lakes and wetlands, populated with rare birds and fish not to mention lions, hippos and gorillas. Reporter Robert Draper wrote the piece and he told Here and Now the very richness of the area has led to scarcity.

“Plentiful rainfall, fertile volcanic soil. The fact that it is mainly at a high altitude, which has made it less susceptible to the spread of diseases. All of this has resulted in a lot of people showing up and a dense population. It now has the highest fertility rate on the continent and thus in the world. This has produced a strain on the land that is enormous. The competition for finite resources has led to power grabs, the shredding of the bio-diversity of the area and of course most notoriously…the formation of militias, the pitting of one ethnic group against another [through] mass rapes and genocides,” he said.

To read the full article, please click here: http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2011/12/01/where-population-pressures-have-deadly-consequences


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