After 2001, some people began experiencing falling happiness and life expectancy in my Timelines simulation (“Green”) that best matches our history. Starting in 2012, both of those variables were zero for a growing number of people whose part of the population was essentially living the rest of their lives without being replaced by children. The rest were still growing toward the peak that they had left. These conditions are identified in the following example as ranges of “action phases” that are derived from the ratio of unused resources to resources used to meet people’s basic needs.
ABOVE: Distributions of population, happiness, and life expectancy as functions of action phase at the beginning of 2020. Three ranges of phase identify trends in happiness and life expectancy: Growing (phases 1-5), Falling (phase 6), and Dying (phase 7). In this example, 16% of the population is growing, 35% (51% minus 16%) is falling, and 49% (100% minus 51%) is dying.
The conditions can be further reduced to “drop ratios” that compare the amount of people falling and dying to the amount of people growing. These are defined in the following graph, which projects how they change over time. Note that historical data is used for years through 2014 (where a “year” corresponds to the middle of the calendar year), and every year after that is a projection.
Drop Ratio 1 is the raw drop ratio, is now more than five, and is projected reach nearly eight before the total population is projected to peak and then decrease. It notably decreased just once, in 2009, corresponding to the global recession in that year, but has increased every year since then.
To the extent that people’s motivations might track with their membership in these phase ranges, it is conceivable that the people in the falling range might be split between siding with those who are growing and those who are dying. Drop Ratio 2 assumes an even split between the two.
The following graph shows the drop ratios as functions of world phase (the phase for the world as a whole). Also shown is the fraction of the population that is falling and dying, which begins at phase 5. For reference, the world phase at the end of this month will be 5.8.