Population Matters Update

Population awareness

According to a new study by the United Nations, there is an 80 per cent probability that the world population will increase from 7.2 billion to between 9.6 and 12.3 billion by 2100. Much of this increase is expected to take place in Africa, with two billion babies being born during the next 35 years, doubling the continent's population.

Crowded street

The Population Reference Bureau has released a comprehensive, interactive map covering population, births & deaths, life expectancy, family planning, income and carbon emissions across the globe.

The link between population growth and economic growth in the United Kingdom appears to have weakened, according to a new study by Sheffield University.

What you can do >>

Family planning & women's rights

A recent Studies in Family Planning report indicates that some 40 per cent of pregnancies worldwide are unplanned. Half of these 85 million pregnancies end in an abortion, which is often an unsafe one. The result is that millions of women suffer from complications. Thirty-eight per cent of the pregnancies result in an unplanned birth.

Woman speaking

In a statement on population and development, the United Nations has declared that "sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights are universal human rights". You can help to make this a reality by signing Marie Stopes International's petition to put women and girls at the heart of the next set of United Nations development goals.

Researchers have found that most European women want two children.

In the United Kingdom, Members of Parliament have begun reviewing sexual and reproductive health services and the Sex Education Forum has issued guidance on sex and relationships education. You can help by signing an online petition calling for sex education to be made compulsory.

What you can do >>

Environmental conservation

Wildlife populations have halved in the last 40 years, according to the latest Living Planet Report by the World Wildlife Fund. The report states that "the biggest recorded threat to biodiversity globally comes from the combined impacts of habitat loss and degradation, driven by unsustainable human consumption".


Global greenhouse gas emissions are set to hit a record high this year, with a rise of 2.5 per cent above 2013 levels.

Ten charts that illustrate the dangers of climate change to people living in coastal cities, countries near the equator and just about all other parts of the world have been published by Business Insider.

We recently participated in the People's Climate March in London, UK to help bring attention to the need to address global warming.

What you can do >>

Sustainable lifestyles

Researchers at Aberdeen and Cambridge universities have confirmed that on current trends world food production will not be enough to meet the needs of our growing population.

Wind turbines

A good reminder that even renewable energy comes at a cost to the environment was recently published.

A study recently published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology indicates that 40 per cent of the world's rubbish is burned, creating more pollution than governments are currently reporting.

Almost 1,500 sustainable development-related documents have been added to the World We Want website.

What you can do >>

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