Because the Earth is a (effectively) closed system and matter can neither be created nor destroyed, only moved or transformed, a wild theory was proposed that increasing the human population could be used to combat the threat of rising ocean levels, since the human body is two-thirds water. In a fit of breeze, every government around world has, rightly or wrongly, chosen to implement a birth promotion initiative, encouraging all citizens to have as many children as possible in the hopes of staving off the dangers of the rising sea level.

Two questions stem from this proposition:

  1. In order to at least equal the current rate of sea level rise of 0.13 inches (3.2 mm) per year, what would the growth rate of the human population need to be?
  2. What initiatives can governments undertake to encourage/facilitate this level of procreation?

1)The ocean area of the earth is ~3.6 $\times$ 108 km2 so the volume which needs to be compensated for is $$V = 3.6 \times 10^{14}\text{ m}^3\times3.2 \times 10^{-3}\text{ m} = 1.12 \times 10^{12}\text{ m}^3$$Since water weighs 1000 kg/m3, this represents 1.12 $\times$ 1015 kg. Assuming a very generous 100 kg/person, this amounts to about 1013 people/year. That's 10 trillion, or about 1000 times more people than are alive today. Each year. Of course, the new people are infants, and if we assume something like 10 kg/infant, that means 100 trillion, at least for the first year or two.

2) Ummm. I don't know. Free porn and Viagra?

EDIT. Assuming 1/4 of the current population is women of child-bearing age who are also fertile, and assuming a current world population of 8 billion, that's 2 billion women. So each woman will have to produce between 5,000 and 50,000 children per year, or somewhat faster than 1 every 2 hours at the low end. This will obviously require considerable motivation of the population. Of course, this will only be necessary for the first 15 to 20 years. After the first, let's say, 20 years, the new generation will be 10 trillion, and can take over from the by-now-disgruntled mothers. Assuming all the new women are fertile, at year 20 they will only have to produce 2 per year. At year 21 they will need to produce 1 per year, and it just keeps getting easier as time goes by. Of course, at year 20 the total population will be about 200 trillion.

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    $\begingroup$ +1 Genuine LOL when I reached 'considerable motivation' too :) $\endgroup$ – Marv Mills Oct 8 '15 at 12:11

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