Overpopulation Essay, Research Paper
How many times have you been sitting in traffic with your engine running and on
the right you see a factory letting off pollutants into the air? Well every time you do this
and the company does this you and them are polluting are air and water, and leading to
the destruction of the Bay Area. Unless we the people of the Bay Area and the factories
do something to improve the pollution we are letting off then the Bay Area is in serious
danger of losing the beauty of city.
When is an area overpopulated? When its population can?t be maintained without rapidly depleting nonrenewable resources (or converting renewable resources into nonrenewable ones) and without degrading the capacity of the environment to support the population. (Schuster 27)
So is the Bay Area overpopulated? If you interpret overpopulation by Schusters quote then yes the Bay Area is overpopulated. The Bay Area?s population has been proven to adversely affect the environment. In recent years the Bay?s water has become so polluted that the fish aren?t even fit for human consumption and most of the Bay Area?s air, “still does not attain to the State ozone standard.” (Duffy) The pollution is mostly caused by large factories waste and commuters coming into the Bay Area. California needs to come up with a plan on how to control the population before it becomes way out of hand. If the current population trend keeps up the Bay Area won?t be able to support the needs of everyone. “Overpopulation will always entail human judgments and value laden statements.” (Carnell 22) It is the people of the Bay Area that are responsible for this problem of overpopulation and we need to take responsibility before it gets out of hand. Overpopulation will eventually cause the destruction of the Bay Area?s quality of life unless measures are taken to control the population.
Water pollution in the Bay Area has recently hit a high due to the economic growth and population of the Bay Area . With the economic growth in the Bay Area this is causing many more people to commute resulting in dioxins polluting are waters. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1999 added 30 Bay Area creeks to the list of polluted lakes and rivers. Some of the rivers that were on that list were the Alameda river, San Leandro river and the Walnut river. “In the case of dioxins, scientists say minute concentrations escape from autos and factories in particles of smoke during combustion and float down and settle on land and the Bay.” (Kay) Commuters that wait in traffic and keep there engines idling and large factories are the main reason for this problem. Dioxins are the main pollutants, polluting our waters. Two years ago in announcement made by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, they declared that dioxins, solvent furans and dioxin like PCB?s were at too high of levels and caused the fish in the Bay to become unsafe for human consumption. “Short term, the EPA decision “ups the priority for controlling dioxin (EPA).” Long term it’s a step toward controlling dioxin releases at the source. The goal is to make the Bay fish able so that people can fish the Bay for food in health (Kay).” EPA also said , “Dioxins bind DNA and disrupt enzymes, hormones and growth, leading to cancer, developmental and reproductive damage, diabetes and immune system impairment.” (Kay) These dioxins are very harmful to humans and can cause sicknesses. If we lose all of our local lakes and rivers then we will be losing a valuable resource, which is fish. The Bay Area?s lakes and rivers are becoming rapidly polluted and if these trends continue then the majority of the Bay Area?s water will be unsafe.
Some actions that the Bay Area should focus on to control the pollution are make carpool lanes more selective, to force more people to carpool, encourage companies to offer a monitory incentive for carpooling, increase affordability and availability of public transportation, and control immigration to California. In order to control the pollution, the Bay Area should focus on making all carpool lanes require three people, instead of two. If the Bay Area was to do this then it would force more people to carpool if they wanted to use the carpool lane. Rides has reported that, “In 1980 when there were no carpool lanes, 16.3% carpooled compared with 14.3% in 1998. This was despite constructing 266 miles of carpool lanes, beginning in 1982.” Rides has also reported that, “67% of the Bay Area commutes to work by themselves with 14% carpooling, 6% taking BART and 5% taking the bus and other various modes of transportation.” (Rides) No one can figure out why the figures have dropped and how to raise the percentage of people that carpool. I think at first that if the Bay Area was to make all carpool lanes 3 people percentages would drop at first but when people saw that the carpool lane was much faster it would make people want to carpool more.
This diagram shows the modes of transportation that people use to commute in the Bay Area. The people that drive alone is very staggering. It seems that out of those sixty-seven percent that drive alone half of them could find someone else to ride with. “The traffic problems we face daily are another result of overpopulation. Just in California, 300,000 hours are wasted in traffic congestion each year at an estimated annual cost of over 892 million dollars. In addition, these idling motors add to the pollution problem.”(Oberlink) These traffic problems we face are causing great financial losses and pollution. Companies should offer a monitory incentive for carpooling. If a large company was to offer an incentive for its workers commuting to work than many more people would carpool. This I think would help control the pollution more than any other solution except for cutting down on immigration to the Bay Area.
Immigration to the Bay Area is a major problem we face. William H. Frey a demographer and Ph.D. research scientist at the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan says, “The greatest numbers of minorities will probably continue to be in large metropolitan areas for the future (Frey).” A recent billboard constructed by the California Coalition for Immigration reform.
Although California knows that we have a problem with immigration it seems that they are doing little to stop the problem.
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