Difference between revisions of "Malthusian Scenarios"

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A '''Malthusian Scenario''' refers to humanity returning to an subsistence-level of existence due to population growth outpacing available resources. Originally the theory only referred to anticipated food scarcity caused by inadequate agricultural production, however “Malthusian Scenarios” now encompass the scarcity of any resource (in relation to an expanding population) that is key to maintaining society’s infrastructure.
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A '''Malthusian Scenario''' refers to humanity returning to an subsistence-level of existence due to population growth outpacing production. [[Wikipedia:Thomas Malthus|Tomas Malthus]] originally proposed this scenario in the 18th century, anticipating that population growth unbounded food production would be outpaced and inevitable famine would follow, leaving the renaming at subsistence-level. Dramatic [[Wikipedia:Green Revolution|agricultural production efficiency increases]] and [[Wikipedia:Demographic transition|population control]] have avoided this specific scenario. In the last ten years, due to efficiency increases in many areas, while population grew 15%[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Population_growth#Human_population_growth_rate] total production grew around 100%[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_world_product#Historical_and_prehistorical_estimates]. Today, “Malthusian Scenarios” encompass the scarcity of any essential resource in relation to an expanding population.
  
When Malthus made his original projections his mathematical model made no allowances for improved technology or for incentives in the economic market being created due to there being a larger population.
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Whilst food production has expanded in the developed world, its sustainability could be jeopardized due to limited resources such as oil (which agriculture is heavily dependent upon) being rapidly depleted[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_depletion#Catastrophe]. If population continues to grow a Malthusian catastrophe would appear to be inevitable as there will always be a finite amount of resources to exploit.  
  
However, the problem is exacerbated by economic growth in the developing world as this creates a populous that want to consumer more resulting in resources depleting even faster.
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[[Robin Hanson]] has also suggested that Singularity-level technology, such as mind-uploading, would possibly result in Malthusian scenarios. Because uploaded minds could be so easily copied, reproduction costs would fall so dramatically that population growth could outpace even an enhanced-technology society production. Hence, all wages would be reduced to upload subsistence levels[http://www.primitivism.com/uploads-dawn.htm].
 
 
Whilst food production has expanded in the developed world, its sustainability could be jeopardized due to resources such as oil (which agriculture is heavily dependent upon) being rapidly depleted. If population continues to grow a Malthusian catastrophe would appear to be inevitable as there will always be a finite amount of resources to exploit.
 
 
 
Robin Hanson has also suggested that Singularity-level technology, such as mind-uploading, would possibly result in economic Malthusian scenarios where all wages would be reduced to upload subsistence levels.
 
  
 
==Blog Posts==
 
==Blog Posts==
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*[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malthusian_catastrophe Malthusian Catastrophe] Wikipedia
 
*[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malthusian_catastrophe Malthusian Catastrophe] Wikipedia
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==See Also==
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*[[Economic consequences of AI and whole brain emulation]]

Revision as of 05:40, 14 September 2012

A Malthusian Scenario refers to humanity returning to an subsistence-level of existence due to population growth outpacing production. Tomas Malthus originally proposed this scenario in the 18th century, anticipating that population growth unbounded food production would be outpaced and inevitable famine would follow, leaving the renaming at subsistence-level. Dramatic agricultural production efficiency increases and population control have avoided this specific scenario. In the last ten years, due to efficiency increases in many areas, while population grew 15%[1] total production grew around 100%[2]. Today, “Malthusian Scenarios” encompass the scarcity of any essential resource in relation to an expanding population.

Whilst food production has expanded in the developed world, its sustainability could be jeopardized due to limited resources such as oil (which agriculture is heavily dependent upon) being rapidly depleted[3]. If population continues to grow a Malthusian catastrophe would appear to be inevitable as there will always be a finite amount of resources to exploit.

Robin Hanson has also suggested that Singularity-level technology, such as mind-uploading, would possibly result in Malthusian scenarios. Because uploaded minds could be so easily copied, reproduction costs would fall so dramatically that population growth could outpace even an enhanced-technology society production. Hence, all wages would be reduced to upload subsistence levels[4].

Blog Posts

External Links

See Also