The dynamics of the basic indicators of the current century is as follows: population increase - 3,7 times; economy growth - 40 times; education increase, considering the percentage of literate adults (very approximately!) from 13 to 82 %; life duration - from 50 to 67 years. All colonies acquired independence. Democracy is spread everywhere.
The scientific and technical progress is astonishing - planes, missiles, cosmos, satellites, radio, television, nuclear stations (unfortunately, nuclear bombs inclusive), computers, Internet, genetics, appliance of functions(?) and transplanting of organs, cloning, biological technologies, "Green revolution", etc.
The sad historical experience is also useful: two world wars, fascism, socialism, GULAG and Auschwitz. Unfortunately, the negative consequences of civilization are progressing as well. It is not mere chance that the "global problems" of humanity (Rome Club) were formulated for thirty years ago.
Here are these problems in relation to the latest tendencies:
1. Population is growing. But there are some encouraging signs: due to civilization maturing the growth is almost twice reduced in comparison to 60-s years. There appeared the confidence that stabilization of the global population on the level of 10-12 bln. would happen in 50-70 years. It is much, but endurable for the nature.
2. Growth of world economy is increasing: in developing? countries - 5 - 7%, in poor countries - 3 - 6%. As to the rich countries, the increase in GDP is limited to only 2%. The maturing leads to deceleration throughout the world. This favorable tendency is defined as the "balanced growth". Acceleration advantages are improvement of education and slowing down of population growth; disadvantage increase of dangerous influences upon the environment.
nbsp;But nevertheless, the total Gross Product is supposed to increase by the middle of the next century by 3-4 times. Would the resources be sufficient for such production? No doubt, they are. The energy-and material capacity of a GDP-unit is intended to decrease twice, but the progress would continue. For the time being the exploring of natural resources goes before the growth of industry needs.
3. The environment is sure to deteriorate. The forest area and drinking water reserves are decreasing; biological species are dying out; oceans are getting contaminated; deserts are expanding; arable lands are decreasing; "ozone holes" are broadening; atmospheric temperature is getting higher, natural disasters become more frequent. It all together leads to exhaustion of food resources and is bad for a health. Unfortunately, the dynamics of these processes still remains positive.
Shall they play a fatal role for the planet's biology? No, they shall not. Scientific and technical progress promises to reduce industrial waste and to improve their utilization. There is a hope, that the harmful influence of technical progress upon the nature would increase not in 4 times (like GDP), but may be in two times. Besides, the ecological culture is supposed to be higher; "zones of preserved nature" presented by Europe, North America and Japan would be expanded. The growth of agro-technique and biotechnology would compensate for the arable lands decreasing and provide people with food products, though not on an equal basis.There would be no mortal threat for a human life. The health depends to a greater extend on culture, wealth and medicine than on environmental pollution. The civilization maturing would provide it all.
4. The danger of total nuclear war seems to be over, but the world stability is threatened with ethnic, religious and ideological conflicts. They used to split countries, lead to terror, to the rise of aggressive regimes, distribution and accumulation of nuclear and chemical weapon in competing "developing" countries. Drugs have also become a threat to the welfare of humanity. One polar world happens to inspire hope: when there is an authoritative arbiter, (holding also a big cudgel) it is easier to make decisions.
General conclusion: the balance of negative and positive tendencies has not yet been achieved, but there is a hope. The most wounding thing is that the world science, technique and economy are able even update to control birthrate, to provide everybody with food, energy and needed materials, to render waste and to regain balance over nature. It is prevented by the same biological human qualities as leadership, egoism, grid and irrationality. But there is still a hope: maturing means also the intellect accumulation.
The environment monitoring has been at least adjusted. The nature is stable enough and a total disaster on the planetary level is impossible. Statements on the inevitable degradation of all biological systems after reaching of some contamination level are unfounded. Populations of plants and animals in various regions exist autonomously, their adaptability is high and they can not perish at the same time throughout the planet while the sun is shining. At last, one can hope, that the adequate measures would be taken, provided the threat becomes real. Fear is supposed to prompt intellect.
It is to acknowledge that people would not turn into angels. Therefore, greed, poverty, hungers and cruelty would, unfortunately, remain in the world. If only their scale would not enlarge!