Global problems are the natural consequences of modern globalisation and unrestrained economic growth. They are the result of: irrational natural resource management; the expansive character of the current hydrocarbon-based economy; and the geopolitical standoff of superpowers possessing weapons of mass destruction. They are also caused by processes such as uncontrolled production, consumption, pollution, population growth, and pressure on the ecosystems.
Problems become global when they meet the following criteria:
- they encompass the interests of the whole of humanity in the present and future;
- they have a total and world character in relation to the nature of man, society and ecosystem as a whole and in principle;
- they have the ability to influence historically and evolutionary on the level of social and planetary existence and development;
- they possess a large-scale risk potential, and present a high level of threat in the event that they are not resolved;
- they are characterised by an absolute impossibility to be resolved on a local or regional scale using local resources, private instruments and mechanisms.
Global problems present both a t Global problems can be ranked in the following way:
- increasing environmental harm and the risk of environmental catastrophe;
- asymmetric development of humanity and social-economic disparity between people and nations;
- demographic problem: uncontrolled growth in the poorest countries and birthrate decrease in developed countries;
- international terrorist threats;
- a threat of a Third World War;
- food crisis and famine;
- resource and energy crisis and a deficient hydrocarbon energy sector as a current economic basis;
- socio-cultural and religious conflicts and conflicts of civilisations;
- regional separatism as a form of countering globalisation;
- latent class struggle, the deepening of classical capitalist contradictions and the emergence of new ones;
- pandemics in Third World countries and “diseases of civilisation” in developed countries;
- decrease in the general human intellectual level;
- the advent of the Sixth Techno-economic Paradigm and economic risks caused by the unequal levels of development in different economic and production sectors as well as unequal consumption markets.
- threat of a planetary scale and a factor of planetary unification.