Here’s the thing, though: I think those anxieties are misplaced.
Most evidence I’ve found does not seem to indicate that humans are trending toward over-population derived famine and global war.
Take hunger: according to a Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations report, even as our population climbed, the number of hungry people around the globe declined by 209 million from 1990 to 2014.
Or violence: as scientist Steven Pinker argued in his 2011 book "The Better Angels of Our Nature," rates of violence have actually been on the steady decline for centuries.
What about flooding from global warming, you say?
After all, more people means more carbon emissions means more sea ice melt. And as we’ve seen in Houston — flooding can quickly cause a catastrophe. But that’s the thing: global warming happens slowly.
Individual floods will be terrible and swift and more numerous than before, but huge, heavily populated tracts of land are not going to fall into the ocean in a day (which is sometimes the picture I get from reading stories about potential climate apocalypse).
Even if every bit of the icecaps melts (which won’t happen for thousands of years), there will still be vast continents. And the average global temperature projected for such a doomsday scenario? A balmy 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
I don’t want to belittle the amazing challenges we people will face as the human race develops. Extreme weather, pollution, political strife and sheer aggregate caloric demand are all monumental ones.
I’d just like to point out the game doesn’t end when a certain population number is reached. In fact, the opposite might be true. If technological development is in some ways contingent on the number of full, safe, dry people... then all the new babies being born might just make us better off.