Since the most dramatic instances of speciation seem to have happened in the aftermath of mass extinctions, this essay will survey extinction first. A corollary to is that if any critical nutrient falls low enough, the nutrient deficiency will not only limit growth, but the organism will be stressed. If the nutrient level falls far enough, the organism will die. A human can generally survive between one and two months without food, ten days without water, and about three minutes without oxygen. For nearly all animals, all the food and water in the world are meaningless without oxygen. Some microbes can switch between aerobic respiration and fermentation, depending on the environment (which might be a very old talent), but complex life generally does not have that ability; nearly all aerobic complex life is oxygen dependent. The only exceptions are marine life which has adapted to . Birds can go where mammals cannot, , for instance, or being , due to their . If oxygen levels rise or fall very fast, many organisms will not be able to adapt, and will die.
Rapid population growth. Poor African and Third World countries have the highest growth rate in the world which puts them at increased risk of food crises. For example, the population of Niger increased from 2.5 million to 15 million from 1950 to 2010. According to some estimations, Africa will produce enough food for only about a quarter population by 2025 if the current growth rate will continue.
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As Adam Smith’s invisible hand, fear, became an of classical economics, neoclassical economists greed in their curves. Greed and fear are thereby foundational principles in today’s economic theory, and as a salubrious and critical aspect of capitalism. How can an ideology that elevates, even celebrates, greed and fear be considered beneficial? The obsession with prices and money has also promoted an egocentric view of economic reality. Whenever people think of economics today, they generally only think in terms of money, as that is the medium of exchange by which individuals currently acquire the food, goods, and services that make their modern lives possible. Consequently, the real economy, which runs on matter and energy, not money, becomes demoted and even ignored while the magic of markets and money are worshipped. The financial economy is not real, but is an elaborate accounting fiction subject to . Theorists such as Marx put money in its proper place, as only accounting. Money-based economics is egocentric, in which the focus is on money and greed and everybody’s primary question is “What is in it for me?” That view is also disconnected from the real world.
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Military conflicts. Wars and military conflicts worsen food insecurity in African and other Third World countries. They may not be directly responsible for food crises but they exacerbate scarcity of food and often prevent the aid workers from reaching the most affected people.
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The majority of the severest food crises after the second half of the 20th century were caused by a combination of several factors. The most common causes of food insecurity in African and other Third World countries were: