Population, economics, environment and culture: an introduction to human carrying capacity.

Published online
27 May 1998
Content type
Journal article
Journal title
Journal of Applied Ecology

Cohen, J. E.

Publication language


Following an introduction the topic of past human population is explored focusing on population size and growth, economic growth and increasing economic disparities, environmental impact and vulnerability, and cultural implosion. The current situation is then reviewed, future trends are anticipated and the question of how many people the Earth can support is addressed. Ways in which the situation could be improved are explored. A pyramidal image of population, economy, environmental and culture is put forward.

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