CAMPAIGNERS in Winchester warned of future problems as the population of the world reached seven billion earlier last week.

Members of Population Matters Hampshire gathered outside Sainsbury’s in Middle Brook Street on Monday, Oct 31 to protest against the ever rising number of people on the planet.

The group is part of a national organisation urging the government to have a full debate on population issues, claiming the current rate of growth is unsustainable.

Campaigner Rosemary Conway said: “The UK is one of the most heavily populated countries in Europe, increasing the demands on housing, water, food, energy, an overburdened infra-structure, stressed river systems and natural habitat.

“Its population is not sustainable, environmentally, socially or fiscally. It has a sovereign debt of over £1 trillion accumulated to service a population which its economy has not been able to support. That has implications for our taxes, our pensions, and our jobs.”

The group are calling for the government to change economic and social policies to encourage smaller family sizes and increase funding to family planning.

World population has grown from 2.5 billion in 1950 to seven billion in just 60 years and is expected to rise to 9.2 billion by 2050.