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Monday, April 21, 2008

Too Many People: Overpopulation and the Food Crisis in the Philippines

Sa artikulong ito ni Tony Abaya mararamdaman natin at mamumulat tayo sa mga katotohanang nangyayari sa ating lipunan. Magbasa, matuto at makialam...


Too Many People
By Antonio C. Abaya
Written on April 14, 2008
For the Standard Today,
April 17 issue

And not enough food for everyone.

The headline on the April 14 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer – IMF chief warns of war over food – based on the published statement of the head of the International Monetary Fund as reported by the AP and AFP wire services, is unduly alarming.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn said last Saturday that if the spike in food prices continued, “thousands, hundreds of thousands of people will be starving. Children will be suffering from malnutrition, with consequences for all their lives…As we know, learning from the past, those kinds of questions sometimes end in war.”

That is likely only when poor starving countries are located right next to a country with food surpluses. But in the present situation, countries with food deficiencies are located right next to each other. What can they possibly gain by warring on each other for food, considering that no one in the neighborhood will likely have enough of it?

The wire services quote the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) that 37 countries face serious food crises, but did not identify these countries. A visit to the FAO website – www.fao.org - supplies this information, which combined with other reports from other sources, gives a picture of who are having food problems where..

More than 24 of these countries are in Africa, eight are in Asia, five in Latin America, and only one in Europe .

With the exceptions of Lesotho and Swaziland, with population growth rates of 0.22 and 0.34 percent respectively, impoverished Black Africans are multiplying like wildebeests: Central African Republic 1.51 percent; Ivory Coast 2.00; Ghana 2.03; Sudan 2.05; Guinea-Bissau 2.05; Liberia 2.15; Cameroon 2.24; Ethiopia 2.27; Sierra Leone 2.28; Eritrea 2.46; Guinea 2.62; Senegal 2.64; Kenya 2.80; Somalia 2.83; Mauritania 2.87; Burundi 2.88; Democratic Republic of Congo 2.96; Burkina Faso 3.00; Madagascar 3.01; Republic of Congo 3.26; and Uganda 3.55. Egypt (1.74) is included in this list.

The Asian countries with serious food problems, according to the FAO, are Iraq 2.62; Afghanistan 2.63; Bangladesh 2.12; Nepal 2.13; Tajikistan 2.03; Timor Leste 2.06; Pakistan 1.95; the Philippines 1.91; Indonesia 1.30; Sri Lanka 1.10; and North Korea 0.79 (which has been suffering droughts and floods, probably deliberately induced by the CIA, for the past decade, with suspicious regularity.)

China (0.65), Vietnam (1.04) and Thailand (0.66) are also mentioned because of weather disturbances in the past six months: severe winter in the first, floods in the other two.

In Latin America, the following are listed as having serious food problems: Bolivia 1.54; Ecuador 1.77; Dominican Republic 1.79; Nicaragua 1.97; and Haiti (2.55) which has the distinction of being the first country in 2008 whose government was brought down by food riots, last week..

Moldova (.003) is the only European country which faces a severe food problem. Despite its almost zero population growth rate, Moldova , a former Soviet socialist republic, faces not just a food shortage, but a general economic meltdown. A recent BBC video feature showed scenes in Moldova familiar to many Filipinos: entire villages with only grandparents and grandchildren left; the parents are all working in Western Europe .

(The statistics above are from the 2008 World Almanac and Book of Facts.)

But Moldova is the exception that proves the rule. And the rule is that countries with rapid population growth rates are also the ones faced with severe food problems. Both are symptoms of the same malaise: an inability of their governments to anticipate problems, and a corresponding inability to organize their societies to cope with those problems.

Food prices have dramatically gone up in recent months because of a) increased demand, especially among recently prosperous people, especially in India and China, who now eat twice or thrice a day, compared to only once or twice in the recent past; b) severe weather conditions which ruined crops: abnormally heavy snowfall in China, floods in Southeast Asia; and c) an increase in the use of farm lands to grow bio-fuel crops.

In the past 12 months, the price of wheat has gone up 130 percent; soy beans 87 percent; rice 74 percent; and corn 31 percent.. According to BBC News, per capita meat consumption in China has gone up from 20 kgs in 1980 to 50 kgs in 2007. And an indication of another looming global crisis: water. It takes 1,000-2,000 liters of water to produce one kg of wheat, but 10,000 to 13,000 liters to produce one kg of beef.

Another disturbing statistics from BBC News: the global population was 2.5 billion in 1950; 4.1 billion in 1975; and 6.l billion in 2000. The forecast is 8.0 billion in 2025 and 9.2 billion in 2050. And judging from the population growth rates in 2007, most of those additional two to three billion earthlings in the next 17 to 42 years will be impoverished Black Africans and possibly jihadist Muslims, with tens of millions of additional Roman Catholics, notably Filipinos, to contribute to the Standing Room Only scenario...

In my article titled Philippines 3000 – Ready for 305 billion Pinoys? which appeared in the Feb. 17, 1997 issue of the Philippine Star, I wrote that “even if our population growth rate were to decline from 2.3 to 2.0 percent, there would still be 122.9 million Filipinos by 2025 (only 17 years from now), and 201.7 million by 2050 (only 42 years from now…”

(In 2007, our population growth rate is said to have dropped to 1.91 percent. So our projected population can be scaled down to “only” 100.01 million by 2014, “only” 122.17 million by 2025, and “only” 194.5 million by 2050)..

Impoverished Black Africans do not have the means to wage war on Europe and North America , for food or other reasons. But they can flood Europe with illegal immigrants. Would that they instead just drastically reduce their galloping population growth rates and use their vast and fertile lands to grow the food that they need. But, of course, that is easier said than done.

As for jihadist Muslims, they are already at war with the Crusaders and the Zionists, not over food, but for world domination. Islam is not just a religion, it is also a political system. Its ideal is that all countries are governed under sharia law. Islam is also a global ideology that urges its followers to use all means to work for the conversion of the rest of the world to its embrace.

So by the year 2025 - which is only 17 years from now and most people now living will still be alive by then - there will be 1.9 billion more people on the planet, counting from 2000, and most of them will be impoverished Black Africans and possibly jihadist Muslims, together with some 33 million more Filipinos on top of our present 90 million. (Our president then will probably be Mikey Arroyo, after succeeding his ageing mother in 2020)

What was the title of that Broadway comedy hit in the 1960s? “Stop the World. I Want to Get Off!” It should enjoy a revival. *****

Reactions to tonyabaya@gmail.com. Other articles in www.tapatt.org and in acabaya.blogspot.com..

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1 comments:

S. V. Apostol said...

Tunay, lumolobo na ang populasyon ng ating abang bansa. Ang masaklap pa ay kung sino ang mangmang at mahirap ay siya pang malakas magparami ng anak. Saan pupulutin ang ating bayan lalo na't may krisis tayo sa pagkain sa kasalukuyan?

At, huwag nating kalimutan, ang ating mga ilog at malaking bahagi na po ng ekolohiya ang lubhang napipinsala nang dahil sa sobrang dami ng mga tao, hindi lamang sa ating bansa kundi maging sa buong daigdig. Ang simbahang katoliko at karamihan sa mga kristyano ay masyadong moralista upang hadlangan ang mga hakbangin upang supilin ang pagdami ng tao. Kung pati ang kontrasepsyon ay ipagbabawal ng simbahan, ilang milyon pa kaya ang idadami ng tao?

Kailangang mamulat ang bawat isang pilipinong pula ang dugo at matuto sa mga nagdaang pagkakamali ukol sa bagay na ito. Ang kontrasepsyon ay hindi masama, ito ay kinakailangang lubha sa panahong ito. Bukod sa condoms, pills atbp., mayroong mga pagpapakapon [vasectomy] at sterilisasyon sa mga hindi karapat-dapat magkaroon ng anak. Kailangang gawin ito ng may pagkakaisa at ganap na kaloobang-politikal [political will] upang ito ay maisakatuparan.

Ipagpaumanhin mo, kabayan, kung medyo mabigat ang ilang iminumungkahi ng aming komento. Ang sa amin lamang ay hindi na maaari pang paramihin ang tao lalo na sa ganitong panahong napakarami na ng lahing Homo-Sapiens.

Amin ding iminumungkahi na iyong mabasa ang artikulong ito mula sa isang seryosong Ekolohistang si Ginoong John Feeney ng Amerika.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/may/05/returnofthepopulationtimebomb

Isa pa pong katanungan: copyrighted po ba ang larawan sa artikulong ito? kung hindi naman po ay maaari po ba naming magamit ang kopya para sa aming gagawing video-slideshow? salamat po.

Mabuhay tayong lahat.