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World population growth is caused by the fact that the world’s birth rate is higher than its death rate. Be careful with questions that ask for a cause. Just because the birth rate is falling while population is increasing doesn’t mean there’s a causal relationship between the two trends. A falling birth rate has the effect of reducing population growth, making answer (Both a falling death and a falling birth rate have the effect of causing the world’s population to grow) incorrect. In this case, that downward pressure on population growth is offset by a falling death rate, which is keeping the gap between the birth rate and the death rate about the same. It’s impossible for a birth rate near zero (meaning almost no births) to produce population growth unless, somehow, death has been eliminated . Answer (Seventy-five percent of the world’s people live on 5 percent of the earth’s surface) is a correct factual statement, but one that does not explain why the world’s population is increasing.