Berck, Peter; Levy, Amnon; and Chowdhury, Khorshed, An analysis of the world’s environment and population dynamics with varying carrying capacity, concerns and skepticism, Department of Economics, University of Wollongong, Working Paper 10-10, 2010, 30p.
Due to the open-access nature of the environment we consider an ad hoc adjustment of people’s footprints to the quality of the environment. The adjustment is due to concerns, but hindered by skepticism about announced changes in the state of the environment. Changes in the quality of the environment affect Earth’s carrying capacity. By expanding the Lotka-Volterra predator-prey model to include these features we show that despite skepticism the environment-population system does not collapse. We also show that in the ideal case of no skepticism, the interplay between the non-optimally changing environmental concerns and carrying capacity sends the world’s environment and human population on an oscillating course that leads to a unique interior steady state. These results require no further technological, social or international progress.