Birth Control and Global Injustice to the Environment

Residing in a suburb of New York City, experiencing the daily challenges of bumper to bumper traffic and elbowing my way through crowds, I have been given a wake-up all.  Overcrowding is not a healthy existence, and one of the main cures for keeping the numbers of people in check is simple–birth control.   Birth control can be a key factor in the overall existence and health of our population and environment.  To maintain and control the population and its growth patterns, individuals should adhere to some form of birth control.  Whether it be the use of condoms or birth control pills and other methods that reduce reproduction, we can be on the path to eliminate the threats to our public health and environmental issues that are suffering due to overpopulation.

Using the “hypocrisy” manipulation for individuals may aid in the usage of such control methods.  With the arousal of dissonance, individuals may take heed in their past behaviors and focus more on the outcomes and shortcomings that may arise for oneself and others in the environment. In studies regarding the use of condoms, it was noted that the hypocrisy manipulation offered the results of greater intentions to utilize condoms as opposed to past behavioral patterns  (Aronson et al., 1991).

I was devastated to discover that in my community alone the life expectancy is lower that the other five surrounding boroughs.  Staten Island, New York has the highest death rates per 100,000 people in the five boroughs due to cancer, chronic lower respiratory, disease, and heart disease (Donnelly, 2012).  These illnesses have been attributed to the environment where I live.  The abundance of people have afforded crowded conditions that cause extreme situations that affect one’s personal health.  When it comes to exhaust from vehicles that crowd the roads, fumes from ferries that transports thousands of people per day to their jobs, and overall pollution due to the supply and demand to keep the city functioning, a person’s health is at risk on a daily basis.  On a brighter note, if these people and generations before them had practiced some sort of birth control, the population would not be so devastating today and the quality of life in my community would not be so unhealthy and filthy.  To drive into a shopping plaza and have another driver threaten your life for the parking spot proves that there is definitely devastating effects of overcrowding and human existence.  This has happened to me on more than one occasion and has become an acceptable norm.  There have been deaths related to this topic in my community.

Not only can overpopulation affect one’s health and living conditions, but also it can have a devastating impact on our food and water supply.  Overpopulation can also pressure our coastal ecosystems, fisheries, and forests.  Our biological diversity is compromised regarding agriculture and medicine.  Plants and animal species are forced into extinction due to the population boom and demands.  This problem reaches a global environmental problem.  Demands for food, irreplaceable depletion of natural resources and harmful effects to our entire ecosystems are just some of the problems that are encountered with human overpopulation.   Depletion of the stratospheric ozone, along with systemically polluting our soil, air, water, and food supply is another effect of overcrowding in the environment.

Studies have suggested that if the population growth was curbed, global poverty and even a simple reduction of carbon emission per year would be reduced.  Global problems such as climate change, poverty and lack of resources can be resolved if family planning is encouraged (Kristof, 2011).  Not only does overpopulation lead to greater poverty and lower standards of living, but exposure to pollution, environmental hazards, toxic substances and other health risk factors rise to deadly levels.  If the process of reproduction is curtailed through the use of birth control practice, our environment can take a breath and improve its living standards.  Investments can be utilized to boost productivity and help the economies flourish.  Our supply for natural resources can be offered time to replenish itself and not be diminish due to high demands placed on it by overpopulation.  The water supply can be conserved more, and the agricultural and industrial areas can better themselves by increasing productivity and supplies.

In conclusion, birth control methods can help in slowing down the population growth.  With this in motion, the living standards will improve, along with the protection of our natural resources.  The population size will stabilize and individuals can sustain a more favorable standard of living.  With the population growth being curtailed through birth control, our resources, environment, and sustainable development can be maintained and improved.  Whether on a global scale or as experienced on a smaller scale in my own community, the impact of overpopulation can be harmful and unhealthy, both to the physical and mental capacities of a person.   This is an interesting parallel, but the end result can help us live a longer, healthier existence.




Aronson, E., Fried, C., & Stone, J. (1991). Overcoming denial: Increasing the intention to use condoms through the induction of hypocrisy. American Journal of Public Health, 18, 1636-1640.


Donnelly, F. (2012) Want to live longer? Staten Island may not be your place. Staten Island Advance, pp. 3, 4.


Kristof, N. D. (2011, November 2).  The Birth Control Solution. The New York Times, pp. 24, 25.


  1. Keli Elaine Barnes

    As I did find you blog interesting as well as having many valid points, I cannot help but to agree with Breanna when it comes to whether or not you are trying to say that birth control should be mandatory. I come from a small community unlike you but I do however see how lowering the population could be helpful to everyone’s health. I also agree that there are a lot of people that should be on birth control that is not. I however do not think it would be right to make people be on it.

    Another thing that you said that stuck in my head was about how as we become more and more populated its taking away our forests, waters, and ecosystems. This is a big problem because that damages our food, animals, our water, ect. Where I come from there is a lot of country area however it is beginning to slowly not be country because of people moving into those areas. I cant help to think about in 40 years when my kids are growing up raising their kids what is it going to be like? We are causing pollution without thinking about the effects of what we are doing. Maybe it is not what we would consider a problem now because most are not aware of the problem but in a few generations our offspring is going to see the problem and be directly affected by it.
    In my eyes the solution is obviously birth control, however making people be on it is not right, but with the accurate information to show how positive it would be to slow down our populations growth people may realize that they should be on it and only have kids when it is planned and the timing is appropriate for them. Another solution would be, as controversial as it is, to start not accepting immigrants into our country. I know there are reasons we let them however the more that come the less room their is.

  2. Breanna Michelle Meade

    I found your blog quite interesting to read and I agree with your post in the sense that everyone should have easy access to some form of birth control if they would like it. I do, however, think it would be unethical to require people to use birth control in order to maintain a population standard because it would go against human rights. Whether or not you were leaning in that direction with your blog was unclear.

    Another solution to overpopulation in large city like New York that I have thought of is putting some sort of law on across the board that only a certain amount of people can be present in that area at a time. This would mean for those living, working, etc. within the city lines. I am just not sure how the state would go about putting that law into place because a lot of people would lose their homes and jobs. I, too, agree that having so many people per capita leads to unnecessary conflict, like parking lot fights. I live three hours away, in Syracuse, and still have never visited the city because I was afraid of what might happen to me. The biggest factor of that fear is the overpopulation in that area.

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