EDITORIAL

Population and Development

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Science  29 Jul 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6042, pp. 499
DOI: 10.1126/science.1210732

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Summary

As the world's population reaches 7 billion this year, we should reflect on the many ways in which population dynamics matter to the planet's future. Population growth patterns are linked to nearly every challenge confronting humanity, including poverty reduction, urban pollution, energy production, food and water scarcity, and health. With world population projected to surpass 9 billion by 2050, these issues and the desire to raise living standards at the same time will create a huge challenge. What immediate actions can be taken to deal with growth while ensuring a sustainable future for all of the world's inhabitants?