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Thread: Bill & Melinda Gates: Our Bet For 2030

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    LouPhinFan's Avatar
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    Bill & Melinda Gates: Our Bet For 2030

    http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/21/opinio...030/index.html


    Fifteen years ago, the two of us made a bet.
    We started our foundation in 2000 with the idea that by backing innovative work in health and education, we could help billions of people improve their lives. The progress we've seen so far is so exciting that we are doubling down on the bet we made 15 years ago.

    Here's our bet: The lives of people in poor countries will improve faster in the next 15 years than at any other time in history. We're putting our credibility, time and money behind this bet because we think there has never been a better time to accelerate progress and have a big impact around the world.

    Here are four big breakthroughs we see coming by 2030:
    It's refreshing that the Gates have been doing this for so long. Putting their money where their mouths are for sure. Kudos to them.

    The one thing I caution though: assuming they succeed with what they're doing in Africa, population will explode. How much more population can this planet handle? Clean drinking water will become more of a valued resource than it already is. Hopefully their counterparts that are investing in space travel and research will get some breakthroughs. As a species we may have to start mining other bodies in this solar system for resources.
    Nearly 70% of the Earth is covered by water...the rest is covered by Gerod Holliman.

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    TheWalrus's Avatar
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    I really don't know that much about Africa tbh. Too big a subject. But the best number I could find on the total aid to Africa is about $30 billion a year, which appears to be down almost $15 billion from five years ago. Of course, it depends on what you mean by "Africa". Egypt is geographically in Africa but it's really much more of an Arab country. All the countries North of the Sahara feel that way.

    Anyway I tend to think that even if there is a population explosion because they're able to handle basic services like water and food their ability to handle the resulting growth will outpace the growth itself. Maybe that's too optimistic though. Africa has a lot of some resources -- primarily mineral, some rare Earth stuff like cobalt -- but not others. I don't think they're overflowing with water, for example, clean or not. I know they don't have much in the way of indigenous animals that can be domesticated -- iirc that's considered one of the main reasons Africa did not become advanced the way Europe and Asia did, which both had animals that were easy to domesticate -- and no matter what they do half of their land is the Sahara and is almost unlivable. I mean, isn't the Sahara almost the size of the entire continental US or some such?

    Either way, kudos to the Gates'. It's amazing how many billions and how much time it takes just to do the basics in terms of roads and water. Just roads and water.



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    There was a statistic somewhere where a majority of the top ten fastest growing economies in the world are in Africa. The continent is certainly on an upward swing, but they still have systemic issues of political instability and the larger issue of resources. That is more problematic than simply Africa, though, as population is increasing everywhere except parts of Europe. Clean water is going to become more and more scarce as more people are on this Earth. The water use for humans in the developed world is staggering, from their own consumption, bathing, food production, and creating more and more areas for people to live that people were not really designed to inhabit.

    The solution is simple, but politically impossible: limit the amount of children people can have. If you limited families to three children, the extra child making up for those who are unable or unwilling to have children, you can meet those future challenges. We keep pretending that resources are infinite, but the next few decades will teach us otherwise.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tetragrammaton View Post
    There was a statistic somewhere where a majority of the top ten fastest growing economies in the world are in Africa. The continent is certainly on an upward swing, but they still have systemic issues of political instability and the larger issue of resources. That is more problematic than simply Africa, though, as population is increasing everywhere except parts of Europe. Clean water is going to become more and more scarce as more people are on this Earth. The water use for humans in the developed world is staggering, from their own consumption, bathing, food production, and creating more and more areas for people to live that people were not really designed to inhabit.

    The solution is simple, but politically impossible: limit the amount of children people can have. If you limited families to three children, the extra child making up for those who are unable or unwilling to have children, you can meet those future challenges. We keep pretending that resources are infinite, but the next few decades will teach us otherwise.
    Because it's impossible, better to focus on something that is possible: developing better sources of energy to make desalinization economically and environmentally feasible. Clean water is as much as anything an energy problem. If more efficient methods of desalinization can be developed to go along with more abundant sources of clean energy, we'd be able to stretch out the deadline on the water problem way into the future.
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