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FOCUS ON GENDER. 1993 Feb; 1(1):22-3.Inequalities in distribution of wealth, uneven use and distribution of resources, and human settlement patterns contribute more to environmental degradation than does population size. Current global economic strategies and policy decisions affect population and the natural environment. Large-scale technology and communications, the globalization of capital, subordination within world markets, and increasing consumption levels have broken down livelihoods and the environment. Therefore, contrary to popular opinion, population growth is not the key variable in environmental degradation. The erosion of livelihoods really affect women, especially poor women. Legal and political rights, women's economic independence, education, health, access to reproductive health services, and improved child survival greatly influence fertility decline. The disintegration of women's livelihoods restricts their access to health services and education. We cannot depend on capitalism to protect our livelihoods or the health of the environment. So nongovernmental organizations, international agencies, and national and local governments must do so. Assessments of intensive agriculture, industries destroying the social and physical environment, and military activities are critically needed. We need to reassess the macroeconomic forces affecting the natural environment and livelihoods of the poor. Communities should influence and demand policies and regulations preserving their access to resources. Women must participate more intensely in decision making. They should have access to key services. Citizens should have more access to information on environmental damage of industrialized products and processes. All of us need to advocate for more environmentally sound and sustainable forms of development and technology. People at the local, national, and global levels must work to change values that have caused overconsumption, thereby promoting a new ethic centering on caring for people and the environment.
WORLD HEALTH FORUM. 1993; 14(2):121-3.Concern over population explosion in relation to resources is legitimate. However, Western views on the matter reflect only part of the truth. The birth of a baby in the US imposes vastly more stress on the world's resources than does a birth in the Third World. The developed countries place a disproportionately high emphasis on fertility regulation in the Third World. Officials in the US have expressed the view that demographic factors could be the seeds of revolutionary actions, including the expropriation of foreign economic interests. Poverty, population growth, and large proportions of young people could create pressure for development, induce reviews of foreign investment terms, and even boost the military. Both communism and capitalism went wrong in postulating irreconcilable conflict between the individual and society: communism crushed individualism while capitalism extolled it. Unbridled individualism is selfishness, just like nationalism and racism. At the global level it leads to exploitation by industrial countries of developing countries. At the national level it benefits the few at the expense of the many. In the US, some 40 million people cannot afford health insurance. It is neither acceptable nor ethical to suggest a cessation of vaccination in poor countries while other countries spend vast sums on military equipment and promote extravagant consumerism. The proper tool for population control in overpopulated areas is development. The countries with zero population growth are the major consumers of resources: the US, with 6% of the world population, consumes a third of global production. If human existence is to be sustained, resources should be used to satisfy need rather than greed. These goals are likely to be achieved only if a moral purpose is injected into the politicoeconomic system. The medical profession should take the lead by demanding change.
Development. 1992; (3):72-6.An expansive definition of sustainable development is given to include operationalized measures such as: land and water resources, natural resource related measures, population and quality of life indicators, environmental indicators, welfare and level of living indicators, and institutional and legal indicators. Major global problems still include hunger and poverty. The most crucial issue is the sustainability of the developmental process when social, ecological, and economic environments are deteriorating. Several factors causing this deterioration are constructed using a paradigm. The paradigm entails simultaneously accounting for security and welfare. Care must be taken in assuming that growth is equal to welfare, when welfare includes growth and equity and justice. The concept of resource cost within a market pricing system is necessary to environmental and economic development. Wealth is determined by capital stock and environmental and human resources. The notion of the individual as the basic entity for all welfare computations denies the interdependence of natural resources and humanmade capital, between nations and groups, humanity and animals, biomass and animals. The emerging issues are how to bring about the desired changes. The neoclassical school and the utility approach say to adjust demand (consumption) through pricing which leads to inequality. Marx and Engel suggested demand be treated as secondary. Human welfare is adjusted through productive structures and distribution, which in developing countries has revealed inefficiency and mismanagement of common property resources and misallocation of environmental resources. A crisis is the inability to find perfect substitutes for ecological resources. Environmental theory did not provide for tools for pricing environmental resources. Human capital is limited in acting as a substitute for natural capital. 1) Limits to sustainability, high costs of substitution, and irreversibility of ecological resources pose major problems to economic development. 2) Economic progress has declined even with a high rate of capital accumulation. There is a vicious cycle of poverty and environmental degradation. 3) Population pressure adds to the complexity of the issues. Valuation of resources is problematic. 4) Women's status and responsibilities are at stake and urban challenges are increasing. A social system analysis is an appropriate framework: an ecological paradigm of maintaining resources instead of income. A balance between long and short development is necessary. Dynamic adjustments are possible.
In: The global possible: resources, development, and the new century, edited by Robert Repetto. New Haven, Connecticut, Yale University Press, 1985. 457-73. (World Resources Institute Book)If certain institutional conditions are upheld, markets can provide supplies and allocate use so that minerals and materials will satisfy our needs for a very long time, likely forever. These conditions include internalization of environmental damages, worldwide trade access to raw materials, access to the earth's crust for exploration, and prevention of market control by either sellers or buyers. Contrary to popular belief, primary mineral supplies are indeed infinite since they flow to the world economy at a cost that will support their demand as influenced by supplies from scrap. Rarely do interruptions in supply justify government interference in mineral markets. Technology tends to provide new supplies or changes material demands. For example, in the mid 1970s in Zaire, the military prevented cobalt supplies from reaching the markets. Manufacturers of jet engine turbines and high temperature magnets asked the US government to open up strategic cobalt stockpiles to meet their needs. The government did not do so since no state of emergency existed. Cobalt prices increased. This predicament forced research and/or development of new technologies: Cobalt-free magnets and use of other materials such as ceramics for turbine blades. Many people do not consider the large mineral deposits in the seabed because of the tremendous costs to extract them. Technological development is need to identify means to explore and extract them. Mineral and material demand are not always in those countries where the deposits exist so international trade is very important. Thus policies permit efficient trade, production, and use should be promoted. The market works.
In: Preserving the global environment: the challenge of shared leadership, edited by Jessica T. Mathews. New York, New York/London, England, W. W. Norton, 1991. 39-77.The thesis that human population growth will eventually destroy the equilibrium of the world ecosystem, because environmental strain is a nonlinear effect of the linear growth, is embellished with discussions of technology and resulting pollution, population dynamics, birth and death rates, effects of expanded education, causes of urbanization, time constraints and destabilizing effects of partial development and the debt crisis. It is suggested that the terms renewable and nonrenewable resources are paradoxical, since the nonrenewable resoureces such as minerals will always exist, while renewable ecosystems and species are limited. The competitive economy actually accelerates destruction of biological resoureces because it overvalues rare species when they have crossed the equilibrium threshold and are in decline. Technological outputs are proportional to population numbers: therefore adverse effects of population should be considered in billions, not percent increase even though it is declining. Even the United Nations does not have predictions of the effects of added billions, taking into account improved survival and decreased infant mortality. Rapid urbanization of developing countries and their debt crisis have resulted from political necessity from the point of view of governments in power, rather than mere demographics. Recommendations are suggested for U.S. policy based on these points such as enlightened political leadership, foreign aid, and scientific investment with the health of the world ecosystem in mind rather than spectacle and local political ideology.
["Zero growth" of population and its consequences for the West] Nulevoi rost naseleniya i ego posledstviya dlya stran Zapada
Memo: Mirovaya Ekonomika i Mezhdunarodnye Otnosheniya. 1985; (8):41-54, 159.The consequences of the decline in fertility in Western Europe and Northern America are analyzed. The author first describes current demographic trends and suggests that the trend toward population decline is probably irreversible. Consideration is given to determinants of fertility such as industrialization, urbanization, women's economic activity, educational standards, health services, social security, demographic policy, and income. Factors affecting Western fertility are identified as inflation, unemployment, and spiritual impoverishment. The existence of various schools of thought in Western countries concerning the implications of these trends is noted. These include the fear of the environmental impact of further population growth and the fear of the consequences of population decline. The author concludes that a period of stable population growth will mean a decline in the available labor force, an increase in the age of the labor force, an increase in the number of pensioners, a change in the structure of demand, and other problems for capitalist societies. (summary in ENG)
Impermanent mobility in Indonesia: what do we know about its contemporary scale, causes and consequences?
[Unpublished] 1981. Paper presented at the Population Association of America Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., Mar. 26-28, 1981. 44 p.Add to my documents.
Economic Development and Cultural Change. 1981 Apr; 29(3):597-611.This paper attempts first to examine the applicability of traditional consumption function models to poor developing countries (hereafter LDCs) by fitting them to Korean data for the post-Korean War period, following the approach in the Modigliani-Tarantelli (MT) study. In doing so, the results of consumption function estimates for Korea, a poor LDC, are compared with those for Italy, a rich LDC, as reported in the MT study. The present paper then develops a new consumption function for poor LDCs such as Korea, characterized by low per capita income, a relatively large rural sector, and rapid industrialization and urbanization. Korea's consumption and income data have been compiled and refined for many years and are good quality for our purposes. In addition to national income data, Korea's urban household survey and the farm household survey have been compiled since 1963. (excerpt)
In: Women and development; the sexual division of labor in rural societies. Edited by Lourdes Beneria. New York, N.Y., Praeger, 1982. 149-177.Add to my documents.
Geneva, Switz., International Labour Organisation, 1982. 35 p. (World Employment Programme research working papers; Population and Labour Policies Programme working paper, no. 119; WEP 2-21/WP.119)Add to my documents.