Defusing the Population Bomb
Listen to our interview with environmental journalist Fred Pearce. He’s our guest in the latest Science Forum discussion.
There are almost 7 billion human beings on the planet today, and that number will likely rise to 9 billion by 2050. What will that mean for the earth’s environment?
Not much, according to Pearce.
Pearce rebuts fears about population growth in his new book, The Coming Population Crash: and Our Planet’s Surprising Future.
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Pearce also contends that population growth isn’t the root cause of today’s environmental ills. The current growth in population is occurring in poorer countries, which consume relatively little of the earth’s resources.
The biggest environmental threat, Pearce argues, is consumption in rich countries.
“We’re defusing the population bomb,” says Pearce. “But we haven’t begun to defuse the consumption bomb.”
Do you agree? Come share your thoughts with Pearce in this online discussion. The conversation is just to the right.
- Which is easier to defuse – a population bomb, or a consumption bomb?
- Would you be willing to limit the size of your family for the good of the earth?
- What do you think is the “right” population for our planet? Seven billion people? Seven million?
- Watch Fred Pearce on The Daily Show.
- Check out Princeton University’s Population Clock.
- The U.N’s world population database.