The 7 Billion of Us – All Together
If you haven’t heard yet – this weekend the population of the world will be 7 billion.
The 7 billionth baby somewhere in the world will be born around Halloween (or maybe if he/she is lucky – on Halloween.)
A study found that it will be possible to feed up to 10 billion people – but that it will not be easy.
The study offers some core strategies to meet future food production needs and environmental changes.
Some of these strategies are:
- Stop farming in places like tropical rainforests, which have high ecological value and low food output;
- Improve crop yields in regions of Africa, Latin America, and Eastern Europe where farmland isn’t meeting its potential;
- Change farming practices to better manage water, nutrients, and chemicals;
- Shift diets away from meat; and
- Stop wasting food (up to one-third of all food grown is wasted either in production, transport, or after purchase).
What is the carbon footprint of a baby born this weekend?
Over his/her lifetime, each American born in the 1990s will produce an average of:
- 3.1 million pounds of CO2 (same as 413 plane trips from New York to Tokyo)
- 22,828,508 pounds of water waste (the equivalent of 48,060 10-minute showers)
- 16,372 pounds of yard waste (enough to fill 442 large garbage cans)
- 7,249 pounds of food waste (as much as 16 households produce in a year)
- She/he will eat 1,654 chickens, 74 turkeys, 25 pigs, 11 cows, two sheep, and 18,675 eggs.
- And she/he will use 1,870 barrels of petroleum (enough to fuel a Subaru Outback for 822,800 miles).