It is predicted that the world population will reach 9 Billion by 2050. The people will all need to be nurtiored. Marco Lambertini, Director General at WWF International, questions whether we will be able to enjoy a good standard of living if the planet reaches the predicted population of 9 billion people. Let’s consider with some worrying facts:

  • Since 1970 populations of species have halved.
  • We are no longer living off the planet’s interest but are eroding its capital. We consume 50% more resources than the planet can replenish.
  • We are destroying habitats and are eroding biodiversity, which negatively impact the crucial services nature provides to us.

With the planet expected to host 9 billion people by 2050, we need to consider how we are going to ensure these people have access to basic needs such as clean water, air, food, energy, and shelter. Much of the population growth is predicted to come from Sub-Saharan Africa itself – as by 2050 the continent’s population is expected to double. At the same time their per capita GDP income is expected to triple .

We need to produce more food within the next 40 years than we have produced over the past 8000 years!

Mind boggling right? Well, to satisfy these needs all eyes are firmly set on Africa. The continent is estimated to hold 60% of the world’s unconverted arable land and at least 30% of its mineral wealth.

Lambertini is convinced we have the tools to re-conceptualize development in the 21st century but notes that we need to

  • Get governments and regional bodies to become better at integrated planning and transparent decision-making and
  • Require policy and legal frameworks must empower and encourage civil society to be fully involved with decisions that affect their local environments and
  • investors and financial institutions have a role to play as responsible stewards of capital. For more detail make sure to check out his blog on the OECD forum.
Categories: Agribusiness


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