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Malthusian Trap

The Malthusian Trap, introduced by economist Thomas Robert Malthus, warns that unchecked population growth (exponential growth) will eventually outstrip food production (linear growth), leading to famine and stagnation. While advancements in technology and agriculture have increased food production, modern debates continue around sustainability and resource depletion.

Fritz Haber developed the Haber-Bosch process, which created ammonia from nitrogen and hydrogen gases. This process revolutionized the production of artificial fertilizers and significantly increased crop yields, helping to overcome the Malthusian Trap partially. However, the overuse of synthetic fertilizers has resulted in environmental consequences such as soil degradation and water pollution. Haber also played a controversial role in developing chemical weapons during World War I.

Some worry about a neo-Malthusian trap, but others remain hopeful that Agricultural Technology will prevent such a scenario.