The United Nations Population Fund (UNPF) estimates that the world’s population will exceed 9.3 billion by 2050, and will pass 10.1 billion by the end of the century. “It could be far more, if birthrates do not continue to drop as they have in the last half-century,” warned the Times. Computer models have the bulk of the growth this century occurring in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, while the numbers in the wealthy and developed nations of Europe and North America are expected to remain stable. In fact, the populations of some countries, including Germany, Russia, and even Japan, are expected to drop.
The news prompted warning and debate from an army of population control “experts,” who lined up to offer their views on the extent of the “problem” brought on by the dramatic increase of people, and how best to address the issues. In an interview with CBS News, population expert Joel Cohen of Rockefeller University said that the “rapid population growth” the world has experienced in the last 50 years — from 3 billion in 1960 to 7 billion today — makes just about every problem the world faces “more difficult to solve … if we could slow our growth rate, we have an easier job in dealing with all the other things like education, health, employment, housing, food, the environment, and so on.”
A group called Population Matters agreed, arguing in a press release that the “increase in population puts huge pressure on the environment and makes attempts to address issues such as biodiversity loss and climate change even more difficult. As Population Matters patron Sir David Attenborough has said, ‘All environmental problems become harder — and ultimately impossible — to solve with ever more people.’” Similarly, Carl Pope of the Sierra Club warned that a rising population would turn the world into “a very grim place.”
UNPF head Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin used the latest UNPF State of the World Population report to renew the call for reducing populations in poor nations. “In many parts of the developing world, where population growth is outpacing economic growth, the need for reproductive health services, especially family planning, remains great,” wrote Osotimehin.
And in an op-ed on CNN.com, Ted Turner, who has been longtime vocal proponent of aggressive population control, predicted that by 2100 “we could have nearly 50% more people on this planet than we did at the beginning of the century, competing for the same food, water, space, and attention.” Turner cited statistics from the Guttmacher Institute, the defacto research arm of abortion giant Planned Parenthood, that “there are 215 million women worldwide who want the ability to time and space their pregnancies, but do not have access to effective methods of contraception.” Turner, who has applauded China’s forced one-child policy for families, declared that the world’s future depends upon an investment in “international family planning.”
But at least one population expert, Steven Mosher of the Population Research Institute, refuted the predominant doom and gloom, arguing that, in reality, the earth has no population problem at all. In an op-ed appearing on LifeNews.com, Mosher addressed some of the concerns raised by other population control spokespersons, beginning with the assertion that “a rudimentary look at human numbers reveals that the world’s population is not continuing to climb, but is leveling off. According to the latest UN estimates, the world’s population will level off in 30 years or so and then begin to decline, slowly at first and with increasing rapidity.” To those worried that seven billion people are just too much for the earth to sustain, Mosher advised, “… just take a deep breath. By the end of the century, the population will fall below 7 billion again.”
He went on to explain that, in fact, “population growth is an important driver of economic progress. Every stomach comes with two hands attached. Every mouth is backed by a creative human intelligence. We can solve the problems that are caused by our growing numbers. In fact, we have been doing so for many centuries now.”
Mosher argued that increased population actually equates into added human well-being, explaining: “The more minds you have in play, the more rapidly scientific and technical advances occur. And in today’s world, you have hundreds of millions of minds at work. Not only that, they are interconnected in an unprecedented way, while at the same time having access to endless stores of information. Whatever problems are caused by our slowly increasing numbers are dwarfed by our incredible and growing potential for coming up with creative solutions.”
Having studied Communist China’s own repressive and tragic “family planning” strategy for decades, Mosher wrote that the population control programs endorsed by the likes of Ted Turner “have never been the answer. Aren’t we all glad — and haven’t we all benefited — from the fact that Steve Jobs’ birth mother choose life, instead of an abortion? Don’t we all mourn the 400 million Chinese children who were aborted by the state?”
Contrary to the opinion of the “arrogant and elitist” population experts, said Mosher, reaching the seven million milestone “is a happy occasion. The world’s population has more than doubled since 1960, and humanity has never been so prosperous.”
Whenever and wherever it happens, Mosher said he was “grateful that Baby Seven Billion will come into this world. Baby Seven Billion, boy or girl, red or yellow, black or white, is not a liability, but an asset; not a curse, but a blessing for us all. Humanity’s long-term problem is not going to be too many children, but too few children.”