Monday, December 11, 2006

World Population - 160,000 BC to 2050 AD

Below is a graph I scanned from Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth. I hope he doesn't mind. It shows the growth of the world's population from Paleolithic times to present and beyond.

Click each for larger.

Is it possible? Another 2.6 billion mouths to feed in the next 44 years? That's double the population of the most populated country in the world right now.

It brings to mind my post, The Paleolithic Diet, 5 - A Diet for the Planet?, where I questioned the feasibility of applying a meat-centered diet to today's 6.6 billion inhabitants, where the author of The Paleo Diet explained that his meat-centered diet would result in "massive starvation of unprecedented proportion on the planet", and where Ronald commented with a way to make it work: "More meat in our diet and reduce excess population, obviously the solution is Soylent Green." Then Melinda chimed in, "[cannibalism] made logical--and ecological--as well as spiritual sense to me." She swears, "I know this'll make me sound very weird (I'm not, actually)."

So, Melinda isn't weird, Ronald is solution-oriented, and Dr. Cordain has in mind the honorable goal of optimizing everyone's body mass index (BMI).1 I have to say, I'm holding on to civility by a thread. I mean, cannibalism is inconceivable to me; it's certainly not in fitting with The Paleo Diet's practices ... is it? :

Neanderthals Were Cannibals, Study Confirms
1 This does not imply knowledge of the beliefs of Melinda, Ronald, or Dr. Cordain.

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