Climate Change

The global pressures of population and access to clean water

May 20, 2012  • John Donnelly

As originally run in the GlobalPost’s Global Pulse blog.

WASHINGTON — The US Census Bureau’s World Clock says that the population of the world today is estimated at 7.008 billion people, while projections show that the world could reach the 9 billion marker by 2050.

In the last of its series called “7 Billion: Conversations That Matter,” Aspen Institute’s Global Health and Development today hosted a panel of experts based in Africa and the United States on the interconnectedness of gender issues, family planning, population and access to safe water.

The point of the series was to ask questions about why it mattered that the world was passing the 7 billion mark, and the questions today in Washington were appropriately big: Will water wars replace oil wars? What are the solutions to expand water and sanitation to the 2.5 billion people who don’t have it? And just how many people can the world support in an equitable fashion?

An answer to the last question: You need a bigger pie, better manners, and fewer forks.

Finish reading this blog at the GlobalPost’s Global Pulse blog.