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Monday, July 11, 2005

Is There a Global Over-Population Problem?

In 1968, Paul Ehrlich wrote a spooky book called The Population Bomb, in which he theorized that, left unchecked, the world's population would increase to a point where it can no longer sustain itself. It sounded reasonable. He predicted that in the 1970s and 80s, hundreds of millions of people would starve to death. Of course, this never happened. Super-sized Americans don't appear to be going hungry. Not that there haven't been famines and people who've starved. But it's not the global pandemic predicted.

While global over-population is a myth, I posit that there IS a population bomb, but the question is "Who is bombing whom?"

I'm here summarizing statistics from a Newsweek article, but don't hold that against me. I've seen this data in numerous places.

Consider this:

* Global fertility rates have dropped in half since 1972, and are continuing to drop
* Estimates are that the world's population will rise from today's 6.4 billion to around 9 billion in 2050. But after that, it will go sharply into decline.
* Birthrates in England, Ireland, Spain, Germany, Italy, Russia and other European countries is well below the rate needed to maintain population. Vladimir Putin has called this a "national crisis."
* The same is true for Japan and other east Asian nations.

* Current population growth in most of Europe - wheresoever it is growing - is due to immigration, a high percentage of which immigrants are Muslims.
* There are some areas which do have a high birthrate. The United Nations projects that the Middle East will double in population over the next 20 years.
* Saudi Arabia has one of the highest fertility rates in the world.

On the basis of this data, I think it's reasonable to fear for the future of what we like to call Western Civilazation.

It's risky to prognosticate, but most will agree that population decline will have serious economic and social repercussions for a country. At the same time, there are radical elements who claim that humanity is a virus and the source of most problems and believe that drastically reducing population is a good idea.

For more information, Charles Colson has an interesting piece here called Wolves in Berlin: Europe's Demographic Crisis.

And I highly recommend looking at the Population Research Institute at (I'm having trouble getting the link to work).

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Caspar said...

I also recommend The Howard Center as an excellent resource on this type of data and analysis. Birth control will be the death of the West.

Caspar said...

Here's the page with pertinent studies and commentaries, and here's a great article.

youdontknowme said...

I don't believe the planet is over populated. I believe africa is overpopulated. They are breeding far too much.

for an alternative viewpoint go here:

Pastor Scott Stiegemeyer said...

I don't deny that there are some parts of the world that are densely crowded. This doesn't mean people are "breeding" too much. It just means that we need to be better stewards of the space and resources God has given.

Anonymous said...

"I don't believe the planet is over populated. I believe africa is overpopulated. They are breeding far too much."

Much of africa has a lower population density than the US, & the US, with 5% of the world's population, uses 25% of its resources.

The rest of the west & Japan uses the majority of the other 75%.

africa isn't even in the picture.

Who's "overpopulated"?

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