IMPACT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Knowing the negative or adverse effects of technological development or science will:
- Enable scientist to develop an awareness of problems which confronts human being.
- Enable societies to be conscious of the fact that the solution to social problems depends on every human being and our bringing together of knowledge and understanding derived from every known discipline.
The positive impact of technology can be understood by referring to the meaning of technology.
Application of scientific knowledge and research with the aim of developing products or processes in areas such as agriculture, food products, medicine, architecture, engineering, transportation and communication.
In the field of agriculture, technological equipment comprising of plough machines, tractors, harvesters, etc., has tremendously increased agricultural raw materials and transferred many of these goods into final products. In the field of medicine, new drugs and techniques for treating any disease have been discovered.
Through surgical technique, better understanding of the body’s immune system has led to an increase in organ and tissue transplantation (such as lung, liver, kidney) and, through ultra sound technique, the condition of a developing baby in the womb can be known clearly.
In the area of architecture and engineering, multi-complex structures such as dams, artificial lakes, canals, houses, etc., have been
Bio technology has helped to improve agriculture and good products by increasing the yield of plants and animals. It has also helped to improve medicine through the development of drugs such as the immune insulin used for the treatment of diabetes. Apart from the gains of technological development, there are negative and adverse effects.
ADVERSE EFFECT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
In spite of the various ways in which technology has influenced man positively, some of the worst problems of humanity have either been
Bio-technology has been brought about or increased by science. A few of the problems are listed below:
- caused an increase in the world population.
- caused pollution of air and water.
- cause poverty.
- threatened the pursuit of peace in the world. Therefore, they are intimately interrelated with one another and with science and technology.
POPULATION: One of the most serious adverse effects of science and technology is overpopulation. The world’s population is set to double in approximately 35 years.
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The global population in 1974 was 2.4 billion by the year 2006. It is expected to have increased to 6.8 billion. 75% of the world’s inhabitants live in the highest immediate increments; events are bound to take place there.
The population of Africa was 275 million in 1960
and it was projected to be 853 million by the year 2000.
The factors responsible for the geometrical increase in population in recent years are: Advance in Agriculture and technology.
These have brought about death rates below birth rates. During the first 10,000 year phase of agriculture, annual improvement made it possible for distinctive growth in agriculture. This was at a rate of somewhat less than 0.1%. The agriculture revolution was in full swing. It brought about 3 areas of development.
- Improved crop growing methods such as in crop rotation which eliminated fallow method.
- Advance in livestock feeding.
- Invention of new equipment and machine for cultivation and harvesting crops.
The effect of this is to cause an increase in food production. This led to the industrial revolution, which eventually led to an increase in standard of living that resulted in increased birth rates and a reduction in death rates.
The trend has continued till date, in spite of the fact that some countries are trying to control the birth rate through various means, such as family planning.
The links between these population increases and technology are obvious.
For example, adverse seasons could no longer cause famine because of improved food production. Distribution epidemic disease no longer
reduced population because the standard of feeding had risen.
Advances in techniques for environmental sanitation and an increase in sophisticated means of medical treatment have decreased death rates.
However, the paradox of what was apparently a beneficial aspect of technology, namely the reduction of the death rate due to the effective control of disease and famine, has generated the problem of pollution.
POLLUTION: Overpopulation can cause depletion of natural resources and energy. It also gives rise to poverty and pollution. They are interlinked and are aggravated by overpopulation.
The deterioration of the human environment in particular is a problem that has arisen as a result of industrialization brought about by science and technology. When a man was using his hand as the only tool (that is in ancient times), his impact on the environment was small, but as soon as he had power, tools, and machines to extract coal, oil, and other fossil fuels from the earth in large quantities, he began to generate power (such as electricity, gas, kerosene, etc.), he also began to deplete the natural resources at an unprecedented rate.
Power however is absolutely necessary to run an industrialized society but power also pollute.
Poverty means malnutrition, protein deficiency with possible brain damage, lack of medical care, illiteracy, unemployment.
The majority of people in the world are poor. Hence, the rich consume the world’s resources at a much greater rate than the poor.
There is a link between overpopulation and poverty. This is due to the fact that food and other resources are not increasing at the same rate as the population. There is poverty in spite of the fact that there has been a very significant improvement in world food production. It is still far below population growth.
Pursuit of peace arises simply as an indication of the kinds of problems that pose a major threat, without further explanation. As a result of overpopulation, poverty and pollution, there is an agitation in various forms, which leads to unrest, chaos and violence in several areas.
Some of these are not always easy to control. Advancement in Technology has led to introduction of several facilities such as A. K rifle, Atomic bomb.
The companies that produce these materials depend on the patronage of consumers for survival. The class of consumers that patronize these establishments and organizations have contributed positively in a great manner to the rate at which wars and violence are spreading at an alarming rate globally.
To curtail this menace, there will be need for the pursuant of peace from time to time.