Here at One Truth 818 we are serious about funding research that will eventually lead to all people everywhere living a longer, healthier life, but you wouldn’t believe how many people think that living longer would actually be a bad thing. These people site all kinds of reasons but chief among them are massive overpopulation and the economic implications of old (non-working) people living longer. But thanks to new population data not only can we now refute these claims but build a solid case that actually right now anti-ageing research and finding a cure for ageing is more relevant and more important than ever.
What new population projections show is what both Elon Musk and Jack Ma agree is one of the biggest threats to humanity. Population collapse.
"Most people think we have too many people on the planet, but actually, this is an outdated view," Musk said while on stage with Ma at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai recently, "Assuming there is a benevolent future with AI, I think the biggest problem the world will face in 20 years is population collapse."
"I absolutely agree with that," Ma said. "The population problem is going to be facing huge challenge. 1.4 billion people in China sounds a lot, but I think next 20 years, we will see this thing will bring big trouble to China. And … the speed of population decrease is going to speed up. You called it a 'collapse,'" he said to Musk. "I agree with you."
"Yeah, accelerating collapse," Musk said.
According to the Pew research centre by 2070, the global fertility rate is expected to fall below the global replacement fertility rate — that's the average number of children each woman needs to give birth to for the population replacement — The current global replacement rate is 2.1 births. The current global fertility rate is 2.5 but is expected to fall to 1.9 by the year 2100. Some sources including Elon Musk predict that we will have negative population growth by as soon as 2050.
The world’s large and growing population conceals huge differences across populations, with many countries now shrinking. China, which has long had the world’s largest population, has seen the number of births going down since 2017—even though it took away the decades-old one-child policy. Prominent think-tank Chinese Academy of Social Sciences predicted earlier this year that China’s population could start shrinking in eight years.
Japan, meanwhile, averaged 1,230 more deaths than births a day in 2018, while South Korea had 326,900 births in 2018, its lowest number since at least 1960. About two thirds of the predicted growth in population between 2020 and 2050 will take place in Africa. It is projected that 50% of births in the 5-year period 2095-2100 will be in Africa.
A similar situation prevails in large swathes of Europe, as women increasingly remain single or marry but choose to have fewer children.
What’s wrong with that? You may ask surely a smaller population would mean less climate change. I personally agree with that sentiment. The problems are mostly due not to fewer people, but with more old people. Basically, a higher percentage of the population being above retirement age would theoretically place too much strain on the younger, smaller generation whose taxes would be needed to look after them. This of course is only a problem if the older generation in question needs to be looked after. The obvious solution is to create technologies that allow older people to remain independent longer. Not everyone needs or wants to work after retirement age but it would be nice to be physically and mentally able to do so for those who choose to and the biggest financial and logistical burden comes from a long convalescence whereby the older person is dependent on expensive drugs and full time care. This aspect of things could be and should in my opinion be negated by taking a fraction of the money spent on looking after an old, sick dependent population and spending it on therapies, drugs and technologies that allow people to live longer, more productive and healthier lives. Now more than ever we need a cure for ageing!!!!!