Aspects of Sustainability
By narrow definitions, sustainability measures the ability of the earth to support the human population. That measure is the carrying capacity of the planet. That concept poses the question: can the earth—which now supports some 6.8 billion people—support 15 billion, 20 billion, or 30 billion people? If it had to support that many, what steps must be taken to provide those people with a reasonable standard of living? What changes in diet, work, transportation, and other practices might be necessary?
The carrying capacity of the planet is the number of people the planet could support at a baseline lifestyle ...