Defusing The Population Bomb Myth

To mark "World Population Day", Grist published this commentary by environmental writer Fred Pearce who asks environmentalists not to fall in the Malthusian trap of blaming population, not consumption.

July 11, World Population Day, is a function of the United Nations Population Fund that deals with many aspects of world population growth and sustainable development.

Pearce's commentary is directed toward the environmental movement - to avoid being seduced by the simplistic "population growth is the biggest problem" and instead focus on how affluent nations can reduce their emissions.

"The carbon emissions of one American today are equivalent to those of around four Chinese, 20 Indians, 40 Nigerians, or 250 Ethiopians. How dare rich-world greens blame the poor world for the planet's perils?"

From Grist: EARTH TO FRED; Of course population is still a problem:
To provide a counterpoint, Grist published this commentary by Robert Walker, executive vice president of the Population Institute.

"Earth to Fred: 2 billion more people is a lot of people to a world that is already struggling to feed 6.8 billion people. It's a lot of people to a biosphere that is threatened with what leading biologists refer to as the "Sixth Mass Extinction".

[Note: Pearce acknowledged, "We have 6.8 billion people today, and may end up with another 2 billion before the population bomb is finally defused"].

Thanks to Daily Grist

Full Story: On World Population Day, take note: population isn’t the problem

Comments

Comments

Population and IPAT.

Someone asked EO Wilson some years ago what a sustainable human population for our planet would be, and he replied - roughly: if they consume as much as Japan and the US, about 200 million.

Rather than a binary problem, population is complex and a much better policy framework is to address the problem within the I = P x A x T framework.

Best,

D

where are his brains?

The author of this article is obviously a dimwit as he fails to see the connection between population growth and consumption. Does he not comprehend that the world's poor today will be the consumers of tomorrow? Look what is happening in China and India as these countries modernize and become more consumption minded. Recently China surpassed the U.S. as the world's largest user of electricity. And China is doing a much better job of controlling its population growth than is India. I'm just glad that I won't be around in 30 years to see the fallout.

overpopulation

I find in reading those sites that say that population problems are a myth that their evidence is very sparse and inconclusive. Recently I read Book 1 of the free e-book series "In Search of Utopia" (http://andgulliverreturns.info), it blasts their lack of evidence relative to their calling overpopulation a myth. The book, actually the last half of the book, takes on the skeptics in global warming, overpopulation, lack of fresh water, lack of food, and other areas where people deny the evidence. I strongly suggest that anyone wanting to see the whole picture read the book, at least the last half. It uses facts, not hope to make its points.
The outdated fertility replacement rate of 2.1 is also clarified.
Also—it looks like Malthus was right. England is a new food importer .

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