We say "The population of the world is increasing very fast".

Can we say that using present simple tense? I'm confused with that, because the increase of human population is a thing that happens permanently. Every day.

So, can we say that like "The population of the world increases very fast"? And if so, what's the difference between these two?

  • 2
    I think the difference would be: (increasing) - the current situation, happening at the moment; (increases) - a statement of fact or idea. – shin Mar 25 '16 at 11:41
  • 1
    "The increase of human population is a thing that happens permanently. Every day" - not quite every day. Estimates are that 150k people die each day, with about 350k born, so any natural disaster in which more than 200k people die is likely a net loss. Several would qualify from history alone, not counting future possibilities... – HostileFork says dont trust SE Mar 25 '16 at 11:48
  • 1
    Yes, I second @shin on this. The present tense is often used to talk 'facts'. Birds fly! not 'Birds are flying' – Maulik V Mar 25 '16 at 12:31
  • Thanks to everyone. I don't have any questions about this anymore. – 9Algorithm Mar 25 '16 at 13:41

According to Grammar in Use, we tend to use present continuous to describe current global problems as in your sentence.

Although I think this distinction falls under a more general category which is the usage of present continuous to describe an action happening around now as in

I'm getting fat.

The climate is getting warmer.

I'm learning spanish.

Yes, increasing population rapidly is happening everyday but it's not something that has been around for a very long time. Actually we can say it's happening everyday these days.

When you say, "The population of the world is increasing very fast"

  1. You emphasize that this is going on right now and it's perceived like a warning

  2. You say it's happening at your time and it's a current phenomenon.

| improve this answer | |
  • Glad you found it useful 😊 – Yuri Mar 28 '16 at 12:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.