This is a research project essay a friend and I wrote for 9th grade English class. I no longer have the bibliography, but I kept the in-text citations to prove that I actually researched this and didn't just make it up, so don't come pelting me with lawyers.

Everyone wants to live longer, and scientists believe that they have found a way to make this happen. According to researchers at the University of South California, eventually humans will be able to live up to 800 years ("Live for Hundreds of Years"), though this is far from reach with current methods. With future technology, life spans can be lengthened by genetic programming and the replacing of vulnerable body parts ("Live for Hundreds of Years"). Robin Holliday, a British gerontologist, criticized this method in a few choice words. "The whole [anti-ageing] movement not only becomes science fiction; it is also breathtakingly arrogant" (Connor). No one ever stops to consider the negative long-term effects that this would have on the world. Scientists should discontinue searching for ways to make people live for extraordinarily long amounts of time. Many countries would become overpopulated, unemployment rates would increase, and poverty and starvation levels around the world would rise.

To begin with, if humans suddenly started living 110+ years, many countries would be overpopulated with people. Overpopulation is already a problem in the world. For example, there are approximately 1.3 billion people living in China, with about 142 people per square mile ("China"). This causes many problems, such as scarcity of resources, health problems, and environmental issues. Only 3% of water is safe for drinking, and there is not enough water to go around in many countries. Large populations contribute to the spread of disease, and health resources are not sufficient to combat an epidemic in a massive amount of people (Naik). Increases in population also add to global warming, pollution, and deforestation (Naik). Clearly, if there were more people being born than dying, the already common effects of overpopulation would skyrocket.

As well as resulting in overcrowding, humans living longer would cause unemployment rates to increase. In the year 2010, 9.6% of the United States' (U.S.) population was unemployed ("Unemployment Rates"). There has also been an increase in the number of older people continuing to work after retirement age. Between 1977 and 2007, people in the 75+ age group had a 172% increase in the amount of people working ("Older People Working"). It has also been shown that being unemployed has negative psychological effects. Unemployed citizens lose their self-respect, purpose, and sense of achievement (Jones). Unemployment also has effects on society and the economy. The government is forced to pay unemployment benefits with increased taxes or borrowing (Jones). Increased taxes limit consumption of goods, and borrowing puts and upward pressure on interest rates (Jones). With older people working for a longer amount of time, there wouldn't be enough jobs for the younger people and they would go unemployed.

Adding to overpopulation and unemployment, levels of poverty and starvation around the world would rise. In 2008, the U.S. poverty rate was 13.2%, which includes 15.4 million children under the age of 18 ("Poverty Rates"). Poverty also causes negative reactions. It leads to substandard housing or homelessness, insufficient nutrition, inadequate child care, and unsafe neighborhoods. Poorer children and teens are at a greater risk for school dropouts, abuse and neglect, and physical health issues ("Effects of Poverty"). Poverty is closely linked with starvation. Starvation can have physical effects such as emaciation, dehydration, sleep disturbance, and fragile bones; it can also have mental effects including irritability, anxiety, depression, decreased concentration, and loss of emotion (Cooper). If people lived longer, there would be even more poverty and starvation in the world.

Even though living longer seems wonderful, it would have negative effects on the world, causing overpopulation, unemployment, poverty, and starvation levels everywhere to climb. The resources in many countries—especially crowded ones like China, which holds a fifth of the world's population—would be used up quickly, and people would live in very cramped places. Unemployment rates would shoot up, as older people continued to work, leaving few jobs left behind for young people. Finally, poverty and starvation, already problems in the world, would reach extremely high levels. At first, the prospect of living forever seems tantalizing, but most people don't stop to consider the effects that this would cause on themselves and the world. Scientists should consider these consequences before seeking to expand our lives by unnatural means.

Please note that this is not meant to reflect the views of a large amount of people, this is just my and my friend's opinion. Review with constructive criticism and comments, please!