There have been more changes that have taken place in the past two hundred years, than the rest of human history combined. If you can travel back in time, you would see the vast difference. Life as humans know it back then is so different from how we live it now. Most of the changes that have taken place can be attributed to technology. Technology has changed the way that we lead our lives in so many ways and those changes are accelerating and are coming at a faster pace than ever before.
As the world progresses, the world is also becoming smaller. People can now connect even though they are in opposite sides of the globe. The same thing is true with transportation. It is now possible to go to a different continent, on the other side of the ocean in a matter of hours.
More Changes More Problems
But the changes that we have experienced are not fully positive when it comes to its effects. The developments in technology and the corresponding changes made in the way that we live, have also resulted in new problems coming up. These problems are on a global scale, meaning that everyone is affected by it and so its resolution should be the aim of all mankind.
Problems on a Global Scale
There are a few problems that humanity is facing right now. Resolving these issues should be everyone’s priority. Unfortunately, national division is a major hindrance in the whole world being united in resolving these issues. Here are some of the biggest global challenges that we are facing today:
Even during the 19th Century when the Industrial Revolution was just getting started, some people have realized that the burning of fossil fuels would have a negative effect on the environment. They knew that the increased presence of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by the burning of fossil fuels would have a greenhouse effect that would trap the heat on the planet.
As time went by, man’s consumption of fossil fuel started to increase and there was no longer denying the negative effects that it has on the environment. Now, scientists all over the world are in agreement that we would have to stop in contributing to the process that is causing global warming immediately. If we do not do so then we are going to face a series of catastrophic events that will overtake us.
We are seeing and feeling the effects of global warming all over the world. We are seeing record temperatures being recorded. There are heat waves everywhere. The storms are getting stronger and the Polar Ice Cap is starting to melt.
Stopping global warming is not an easy thing. All the countries of the world would have to chip and do something about it. The sad part is that not all countries are very concerned with the future that the world might be facing and are unwilling to take the necessary steps to stop global warming on its tracks.
The population is growing larger everyday. This is partly due to the fact that life expectancy is starting to improve in many parts of the world. But this also poses a problem to the countries in the world. The increase in population is also putting an added strain on the world’s food supply. The problem is further complicated by the fact that the amount of land that is available is not growing. The world is not going to get bigger in order to accommodate the increased population. This can place a terrible pressure on the world’s food supply.
While food production is being increased with improved technology, the demand is still growing at a faster rate. This leaves the possibility of food shortages taking place and shortages like that can be frightening possibilities. While the rich countries can afford to insulate their population from such shortages, the poor countries will feel the biggest effects of such shortages. We might see famine becoming more common in the future.
When the Cold War ended, a lot of people thought that finally there would be world peace. What many did not realize is that it was just the start of a new period in world security. A new problem which was more complex than the rivalry between capitalism and communism emerged. This new threat to world security is international terrorism.
Terrorists know no boundaries and even the most powerful nations can be dealt with serious blows by small cells of determined terrorists. That was shown by what happened in 9/11. One of the biggest concerns of world leaders now is the possibility of weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of international terrorists. World leaders are still thinking of ways that this can be prevented.
It was in 1981 that scientists announced that they have found evidence for a disease that would become known as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. More than 30 years later, HIV and AIDS have been considered to be the worst epidemic in the history of mankind. Unlike other epidemics in the past HIV/ AIDS was a slow disease that takes years to become full blown. But the cruel fact is that there is no cure for it yet.
There are some treatments that are available now which has some significant effects in prolonging the life of patients. This involves the use of a variety of drugs, but the problem is that the treatment is expensive and people in the developing world could not afford it.
The worst hit part of the world when it comes to the AIDS epidemic is Africa. There are countries there where there are significant portions of the population have been infected. Progress has been made in combatting the spread of the disease but there is still a long way to go.
One particular global problem that many people tend to overlook is the issue of water supply. Since the Earth is made up mostly of water, people assume that there is more than enough water to go around. But what people fail to remember is that only a very small portion of the water that makes up the planet is fresh water which can be used for our needs. The rest is saltwater.
The available fresh water supply is dwindling in many places. This is mostly due to overuse and in some cases due to neglect. Water is something is so basic of a need that we cannot do without it. treating saltwater to make it usable is an impractical and very expensive process. So world leaders must now work together in order to find solutions for the world’s water problem.
All the countries of the world should be concerned with the environmental problems that we are now facing. The destruction of the environment accelerated during the period of rapid industrialization. Forests were cleared and resources were used up at an astonishing rate. But progress comes at a price. All countries in the world are facing challenges in connection with the environment.
One such problem is deforestation. Most of the world’s forest cover is fast disappearing and even at this period when there is an increased awareness on the need for protecting forests, it is still being used up. Another problem in connection with the environment is garbage disposal. How do we deal with mountains of waste that our civilization is producing?
The population of the world has reached over 7 billion. The increase in population brings several problems to all the countries in the world. It can make things even worse. It can worsen the problems in crimes and security in large cities for example. It can make the problems with unemployment, food supply even more acute. It also makes the problems of health and disease control much more complicated.
Many countries are taking drastic actions in curbing their population. China, for example has decreed that families should only be limited to having one child each. But these drastic controls on population can also have a backlash. There would come a point when the population of a country would become old. The elderly would require care and that would eat up resources.
The exploding population of the world also means that the resources would have to be stretched to its limits. Food and other essential materials would be in demand and production would have to be increased in order to catch up with the population explosion.
The world is making progress, but there are some very difficult challenges facing us. All the countries in the world should unite and take action together in resolving all of these problems. That is the only way that we can truly become free from these issues that are facing us today. We have to set aside the differences that are setting us against one another and see that the only hope that we have is in becoming and in staying united as much as we can be.