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The world's population is on the precipice of decline and possible extinction.        © Getty Images
The Big Story

The new population bomb

For the first time, humanity is on the verge of long-term decline

KAZUO YANASE, YOHEI MATSUO, EUGENE LANG and ERI SUGIURA, Nikkei staff writers | East Asia

TOKYO -- For the past 200 years, a rapidly rising population has consumed the earth's resources, ruined the environment, and started wars. But humanity is about to trade one population bomb for another, and now scientists and policymakers are waking up to a new reality: The world is on the precipice of decline, and possible extinction.

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