The causes and effects of population growth

Population growth in Africa

Population growth is the addition of the number of people in a population.High population growth has been a major issue in most parts of the world due to a huge number of people living on a limited amount of resources which are not enough to be able to hold the given number of people.This condition negatively affects the environment since there is a lack of balance between the species and resources available.

Causes of population growth

Some activities have to occur for the population to increase.Some are shared below.Immigration is the act of citizens from another country coming into our country.This means that the number of people currently living in this country has increased but the resources are still constant implying that both citizens and foreigners have to share the available resources in their different activities.A good example is Nigeria.Many people fly into that country for different activities.Some go to work while others go there for recreational purposes.

Child labor is also another sad but true factor.As much as activists and constitutions from different countries may as much want it eradicated,it is still going on and over one hundred and fifty million children are currently working.Parents are giving forth to many children so that they can be employed so that the parents can be able to receive the salaries and use it for their financial benefits.These children need to feed which means that intensive farming using no environment-friendly equipment is done therefore destroying the land which if correctly conserved would have helped to yield better results.

Poor contraceptive knowledge has seen many third world countries suffer from uncontrolled birth.Couples fail to understand the importance of family planning, therefore, giving birth to very many children who in turn are brought up to live a low standard type of life.Due to poor living standards, the girls are forced into early marriage so that the parents can be able to receive dowry.A country like Nigeria with high birth rate experiences low levels of rain simply because its citizens are forced to cut down trees which are rain catchment areas to create a shelter where they can be able to live since the land has already been occupied.

Due to the knowledge of medicine and free medical services offered by the government and other health bodies,humans have been able to live more.The rate at which humans used to die has reduced therefore increasing the population.This is possible because the rate of childbirth is highly opposed to the low mortality rate.For a balanced population,The childbirth rate should be equal to the mortality rate.These people who are alive indulge in different activities such as fishing using improper gear which forces the fisherman to fish even small fish that are not yet ready for fishing.This depletes the number of fish in water bodies creating a future deficit that makes tomorrow’s fish less than required.Using traditional fishing methods such as poisoning affects waterbodies killing aqua life.

Fertility treatment has seen many people give birth.Some formally said to be barren are now carrying children on their backs.This is affecting the environment because even those who could not give birth are now doing it.This, in turn, increases the birth rate which affects our environment.Where will these children live? Where will these children work?These are some of the questions we need to ask ourselves before we can reproduce because what we are simply doing is polluting the environments.These children will have to use this environment to earn a living.Which remaining good way can they use to achieve this?None, so all they will do is add on to the mistakes that we did and the cycle continues killing mother earth slowly by slowly.

Last but not least is poverty.The level of poverty in Africa is so high that people cannot afford to have useful entertainment.Due to nothing else worth doing that is fun,these people turn intimacy into their form of entertainment.Since they are illiterate,they don’t use the correct measures such as contraceptives to control their birth therefore they keep on giving birth to many children who in turn affect the environment.

Effects of population growth

With the increase in the number of species in a population,the environment has to be affected in one way or the other since it was not built for this, therefore, it has to adapt which affects it normally in a negative way.Such is a lack of freshwater.Water is a life they say which clearly states that we need it to survive.Seventy-five percent of this earth is made up of water which emphasizes how important it is.Freshwater is useful in cooking and drinking.Freshwater is estimated to be only one percent of the world which is against the seventy percent demand by humans.This shows that clean water will not be available for everyone which will force some people to drink dirty water.Dirty water is not safe for drinking since it may contain water-borne diseases which may even lead to death if not controlled.

Due to human encroachment,forests have been cleared to create settlement areas for the large population. This causes wild animals to lose their habitats making them in danger since humans will kill them incase they get closer but also humans are at the danger of being feasted upon by the animals in case they move closer to them.Domestic animals are also at risk of being attacked just like the Maasai in Kenya (Rakodi & Carole, 2016).Wild animals are part of the ecosystem, therefore,they require their space on this planet to ensure there is balance in the energy flow system.

Population growth also leads to urban sprawl which is a condition where people migrate from areas of high population density to areas of low population density.This is commonly referred to as urbanization or the growth of towns.When people move from one area to another,they tend to develop those areas.Fossil fuels from motor vehicles and waste fumes from industries will destroy the ozone layer. Improper disposal of waste will pollute land,water and air.This increases or spreads the level of pollution that had already been created in the urban centers, therefore, affecting the environment.

Due to the increase in population,there has to be an increase in the level of farming currently taking place in the areas.Take for example Congo,due to an increase in lumbering and some people,they cleared part of the forest to cut trees for wood but are now using the remaining land for farming.Intense farming has highly increased because there are a lot of people who need to be fed with very little land to be able to do so making these people resulting incutting forests to have sufficient land to carry out farming activities( Ware& Helen,2019).Cutting down one tree should be replaced by planting two just like stated by Wangari Mathai who was an environmentalist in Kenya.Failure to causes a reduction in the number of trees in a region affecting the rainfall pattern which affects agriculture which in turn affects the economy of a state or region.

Due to damaging of the earth caused by human activities,species are becoming extinct.It is reported that around thirty thousand species become extinct every year which reduces the number ofliving organisms in the environment due to activities of other species.We should care for our environment so that other species can comfortably stay safely in it without being extinct or dying from the activities of man( Amade& Bakari,2018).

Solutions to issues of population growth

Better sex education will see to it that people in Africa can control the birth rate and that they will be able to have children when they want to and not when they can.This also ensures that they can plan for their children such that they won’t have to destroy the environment to survive or earn a living(James & Alexander 1991).

Africans should also be educated on the importance of conserving the environment so that they can be able to benefit from it and use it to their benefit just lie it was supposed to be.Pollution caused by improper disposal of waste as more environmentally friendly methods such as recycling should be adapted to ensure that we live in a pollution-free surrounding.

We should avoid water pollution so that we can be able to have more clean water.We should start purifying water to ensure that we have more clean water for our consumption.We should plant more trees that attract rain so that we can be able to save our dying agricultural sector.


We should take care of our environment so that we can be able to live a good life free of diseases. It should be our priority to ensure that we make a place look better than we found it so that generations to come can have a place to stay.

References, Bloomberg,

Peter, Amade, and Ibrahim Bakari. “Impact of Population Growth on Economic Growth in Africa: A Dynamic Panel Data Approach (1980-2015).” Pakistan Journal of Humanities and Social Science (PJHSS) 6.4 (2018): 412-427.


Rakodi, Carole. “The urban challenge in Africa.”Managing urban futures.Routledge, 2016.63-86.

Ware, Helen. “Desertification and population: sub-Saharan Africa.” Desertification.CRC Press, 2019.165-202.


Dietz, Ton. “Africa in Transition: What Role for the Environment?.” Environmental Change and African Societies.Brill, 2019.225-249.

Dos Santos, Stéphanie, et al. “Urban growth and water access in sub-Saharan Africa: Progress, challenges, and emerging research directions.” Science of the Total Environment 607 (2017): 497-508.

Amegah, A. Kofi, and Samuel Agyei-Mensah. “Urban air pollution in Sub-Saharan Africa: Time for action.” Environmental Pollution 220 (2017): 738-743.

Kleemann, Janina, et al. “Peri-urban land use pattern and its relation to land use planning in Ghana, West Africa.” Landscape and Urban Planning 165 (2017): 280-294.

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