Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Hugh Thompson - The world has too many people.

One of my readers, Cassius (Hugh Thompson) sent me a very interesting email yesterday about world population and its effect on the environment. Hugh has put a great deal of thought into the subject and has produced an article on "Optimum Population" (along with an easy view slide show). I'm using part of Hugh's email as a preamble to the full article:
The jury is surely still out on the degree to which Man is having a harmful effect on the environment, but I would suggest it is an outrageous gamble to try to do nothing about it in the belief it is just a natural cycle—because that belief may be wrong.

The trouble, imho, is that the topic has been got hold of by the politicians and the PC brigade, with the result that the subject is no longer looked at as dispassionately as should be the case—it should not be a matter of party politics.

That is a preamble to a message I should like to promulgate: that for all the well-meaning (but possibly ridiculous) attempts to curb carbon emissions and other deleterious environmental depredations made on the environment by Man, the real problem is the sheer numbers of the human population. It is just a simple truism, that the more there are of us on the planet, the more we will consume and impact on the environment. At some stage the size of the world’s population will, or already has become, unsustainable.

Presently, we seem to be trying to bail out water from a sinking boat but failing to stem the waves (of population) threatening to swamp us.

This is a hobby-horse of mine and I remain puzzled why so many so-called "environmentalists" fail to see, or intentionally avoid seeing, that human over-crowding is the crux of many problems.
I recommend that you read Hugh's full article by clicking HERE.

p.s Hugh is also a dab hand with a camera. Click HERE to view his excellent gallery.


John M Ward said...

Good: I am pleased that this message is being put out by others. I have done the same (in my own way, as opportunity afforded) for many years. It is the single biggest problem humanity faces, and at least it can deal with this, unlike some other subjects. Dr Isaac Asimov wrote about it in essays, and he was right.

It is the main reason I decided I would not produce any offspring myself, by the way, (this was long before I realised I couldn't anyway!) in order to "practise what I preach".

The Raven said...

Very true. It is said that cows alone contribute something like 20-25% of the CO2 the planet currently creates, and of course they only exist because we want them to. Now you'd think killing all the cows would solve this problem, but the environmental lot don't like this idea much either. They do sometimes want to have their cake and eat it at the same time.

Letters From A Tory said...

He may well be correct, but there is no money to be made in curbing population growth, whereas there is a lot of money to made from the new 'environmental' activities.

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Jon P said...

I can see that a rapidly rising world population is putting great pressure on the planet and its resources but if I read the information from the ESRC below correctly the birth rate in the UK and in the EU is less than the necessary replacement rate:

“Birth rates are falling in the UK. Over the last forty years the Total Fertility Rate (number of children born per woman) has decreased from a 'baby boom' high of 2.95 in 1964 to 1.74 in 2005. The UK rate is close to the European average of 1.49. Ireland has the highest rate in the EU with 1.99 children per women. Italy, Greece and Spain have the lowest rate at around 1.3 children per woman“ (Economic and Social Research Council)

There is also the related matter of food security. I’ve been reading an article in ‘The Land’ 4 Winter 2007-8. It seems that the UK could (just) sustain itself in food, but that England could not. Apparently there are 9 million too many of us. This is quite an unusual position for a country to have got itself in; it also makes us particularly sensitive to rises in the cost of imported food. How did we allow it to happen?