Environmental Health in the Twenty-First Century: A Peek into the Future

  • Donald Vesley


Predicting the future is risky business at best, and any such prediction based on the assumption that current trends will continue very far into a new century, let alone a new millennium, is even less certain. When growth is exponential (e.g., human population increase since the initial emergence of Homo sapiens), continuing such a trend also defies the laws of physics. Using the example of Malthusian population explosion, long before the next millennium ends, planet Earth would consist of a throbbing mass of protoplasm expanding at the speed of light. Thus, I had best confine my peek into the future only to the early years of the twenty-first century. As a teacher of environmental health for most of the last half of the twentieth century, I am in the twilight of my career and will not have to answer for the folly of my predictions for very long. Thus I will attempt to summarize this turn-of-the-century perspective by projecting environmental health trends beyond (but not very far beyond) the dawn of the new millennium.


Integrate Pest Management Mass Transit Ozone Layer Depletion Refuse Derive Fuel Perpetual Peace 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald Vesley
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Environmental and Occupational Health, School of Public HealthUniversity of MinnesotaUSA

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