Saturday, March 24, 2012

Population, Continued.

Overpopulation is one of my obsessions.  That may be because I live in one of the most crowded cities on the planet, but it's also because I've seen what human population expansion has done to wildlife and to ecosystems around the country.  Sure, there are people who will tell you that human population growth is slowing down, but I think that at 7 billion people, the planet is already beyond sustainable carrying capacity.

You don't have to take my word for it, though.  I found this fabulous site from the University of Michigan that lays out the numbers in a way that just about any idiot can understand.  Check it out:

Population Growth Over Human History

The rate that our species is growing is simply unsustainable and has to be reduced.  This can be through personal choices that all of us can make (choosing not to have children or to limit family size), but it also has to be done through public policy initiatives (public funding for birth control and support for Planned Parenthood, for example). 

Limiting population size won't be enough to turn back the clock on the harm that our species has caused the planet.  We also need to live much more sustainably.  But unless we get a handle on population growth, everything else that we try to do to live more sustainably will probably be futile.

Let me know what you think about this issue...


  1. You're missing the point on the population issues. It's how we're living that matters, not necessarily how many people there are on the planet. If everyone lived in a sustainable way, you could have 30 billion people on earth and it wouldn't be a problem. Of course, if everyone chose to live like suburban Americans then the planet probably couldn't sustain even half our current population.

  2. "Be fruitful and multiply," saith the Lord our God! "And have ye dominion over all the beasts of land and sea."


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