Home > Kahindik-hindik > one more reason to support the Reproductive Health (RH) Bill 5043 – environmental woes blamed on huge philippine population

one more reason to support the Reproductive Health (RH) Bill 5043 – environmental woes blamed on huge philippine population

how many times have we heard philippine government officials say “we do not have the budget” to explain its inability to provide for the population, both basic, medium term to critical services? we must have heard that thousands of times over many years across all types of services and problems.

the country is poor. it has scant resources. that is not being helped by the fact that the country’s population growth has been on a high clip, too fast versus the amount of funds the country can generate to provide for services.

that is related to the point of this article. lets face it – you just can’t keep placing more and more people on the same piece of land and expect nothing bad or nothing wrong will happen. the land can take only so much. couple that with scant resources and this is what we get.

read more on RH Bill 5043 here: http://2010presidentiables.wordpress.com/reproductive-health-bill-5043/

Environmental woes blamed on RP’s huge population

By Michelle Remo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 06:33:00 10/24/2009

MANILA, Philippines — An economist from the University of the Philippines has tagged the country’s robustly growing population as one of the factors that worsen environment-related problems.

Ernesto Pernia, former chief economist for the Philippines at the Asian Development Bank, said the environment problems that recently led to hundreds of casualties would not have been as worse had the country’s population been contained.

“Nobody has mentioned the population issue as one of the factors contributing to the country’s environmental problems. The capacity of the country’s ecology is already stretched to the limit,” Pernia told the Inquirer in an interview.

He said the country’s huge population, estimated at around 92 million, was one reason for overcrowding in the urban areas. In turn, overcrowding had lead to difficulty in managing wastes.

“The consequence of unabated migration to urban areas is haphazard human settlement. Too many people are staying in areas that should not be a place for settlement, like riverbanks, bridge waterways, and esteros (urban waterways)” Pernia said.

Climate change, caused by carbon emissions mostly from industrialized nations, was considered a major culprit for the heavy rains that led to hundreds of deaths in Metro Manila and northern provinces. However, Pernia said, factors that were within the Philippines’ control also worsened the impact of the heavy rains and the massive flooding they caused.

Pernia said population growth, together with weak urban planning, degradation of forests, poor disaster-preparedness and weather forecasting systems, made the environmental problem worse.

The country’s population growth rate is currently estimated at 2.1 percent, faster than the latest economic growth recorded at 1.5 percent in the first half of the year.

Pernia said that with the country’s population already nearing 100 million, a zero population growth rate would be ideal.

According to Pernia, the government has been trumpeting the country’s economic growth and its capacity to avoid recession but what should be of graver concern is the declining per capita income growth.

Per capita income is the total income of the economy, usually measured in terms of gross domestic product [GDP], divided by the country’s population. It basically measures the share of each individual to the country’s income.

The fact that population growth was already faster than the GDP growth meant that per capital growth had already been declining, Pernia said. This placed the Philippines worse off than countries who had fallen into recession, but whose population growth was slower than the decline in their GDPs.

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