Forum, Opinion, Papers


  • Of Whales and Humans.  A radical environmental activist addresses tough issues that will ultimately determine the balance of nature on the planet. Capt. Paul Watson's luncheon address at CAPS2000
       A state of war exists between this generation of the present and the generations of the future, between ourselves and our grandchildren. It is a war we can only win by losing. It is a war where the casualties we inflict are as yet unborn. Some of these casualties are those who never will be born. Perhaps the greatest catastrophe will be the extinction of the human species.
    At is a war where our lifestyles are our tactical weapons. Our infantry is composed of our own bodies, where instead of loading and pumping out shells, we aim ninety million wombs a year towards tomorrow and fire a volley of a quarter of a million babies into the future every single day.
    With every shot, trees fall to provide diapers and toilet tissue, more fish are yanked from the sea, more pesticides are sprayed onto crops, more automobiles are manufactured, more, more, more and more as the quality of the life sustaining environment becomes less and less and less.
  • Overpopulation  by Zachery Fink, November 11, 2000
  • Finite Global Resources and Corporate Globalization.  Robert Cohen KGNU Commentary September 14, 2000

  • Gregg Easterbrooke .. May 2000, by Mark Jones
  • Eye of the Storm  ...May, 2000, by Bill Denneen.
  • GNP and Nature  ...Aug, 2000, by Bill Denneen.
  • U.S. Must Fund Family Planning to Slow Population Jump ..Dec 18, 1999, by Ned Grossnickle, Wisconsin state chair of the Sierra Club Population Committee
  • Pragmatic Liberalism: a Sensible Platform ..Feb. 6, 2000, by Meredith Burke, a demographer and economist who is population policy advisor to the Ecology Center of Southern California. Only a 100 million dollars short, Meredith announces her candicacy for President.
  • We're Dancing on Our Graves  By Bob Carr, Australia's New South Wales Premier, a prominent conservative politician. His comments appeared on the front page of Sydney's major daily newspaper.

  • Essays and Student Papers

  • The Impact of a Doubling World Population on Mexico - by Julie Johnson, age 12
  • Soothsayers & Doomsayers by Hram Yaegr
  • Readings on population, procreation, and the meaning of life

  • Debates

  • Overpopulation vs Overconsumption
  • A Population Virus
  • God Will Take Care of Things

  • Forum

    April 27, 2001
    Hi, my name is Steve and I live in California where overpopulation seems to be a real problem lately. I am in high school and am doing a research paper on controlloing the world's population. I never really knew that overpopulation was such a huge problem until doing this report, and your website helped me educate myself about the problem at hand.

    I was just thinking that eventually the population will get so big that the earth may no longer be able to support us all. Do you believe that this is a realistic problem? Also, the effect we humans have on the environment is horrible, soon we will have ruined all the natural recources that we depend on so much. I am new on this topic, but it looks like we are on an inevitable path to our own destruction. I was just wondering if this is a possibility, or is it just crazy thinking?

    One more thing. Population is supposed to reach 9 billion in just about 50 years. Is it even possible to overcome the population problem. I mean what can we really do to help, if anything? Well anyways, thank you for your help.


    Hi Steve,

    More and more people means more poverty, more malnutrition and even starvation, more wildlife depletion, more climate change, more diseases, more pollution, and more chance of running low on availble fossil fuels - and a reduced standard of living for all except the rich.

    But there are things that are being done. The rate of population growth is slowing coming down, having peaked in 1960. How fast it comes down is extremely important. Even a difference of a few percentage points in growth rate can make a big difference. The UN predicts somewhere between 8 billion and 11 billion in 50 years, which is supposed to be the peak of population - if we don't lose sight of the family planning efforts we have been making.

    Whether or not the earth can support 11 billion people is a big question. Many think that 6 billion are too many. Fossil fuels, particularly oil and natural gas, will be peaking and soon, and then it will be much harder to maintain the Green Revolution that has feed the world. Aquifers will be overpumped, and fewer fossil fuels will make it that much harder to pump water from deep underground. Deforestation may have already reached a critical point, but when people turn to firewood to heat their homes, it will be a serious problem the world over.

    So it is a race against time. We must learn to conserve. We must push for more family planning - there is a huge unmet need. We must push for development of alternative energy resources.
    ...Karen Gaia

    August 22, 2000
    I am really pleased to see your site addressing what is undoubtedly THE problem which the world needs to face.

    However I get depressed when I read messages from concerned people complaining about sitting in traffic jams - as though they are not part of the problem. Here in Vienna (Austria) we have superb public transport which allows those who so choose to get from A to B without polluting the world. My (limited) experience of the States is that public transport is the domain of the underprivileged - everybody else drives everywhere and in some places there are not even any sidewalks.

    I feel that overpopulation can't be seen it isolation. I hope that one day the USA might seriously address the problem of causing so much of the world's pollution.


    Dear Roy:

    I agree with you that the U.S. has made a mess of personal transportation. However, I think it is important that you understand the complexity of the problem before you point any fingers.

    My family moved to a bedroom community of Sacramento California in 1950. Although Sacramento is the capitol of California, and the the center of government for a state that is bigger than many countries, Sacramento remains a rather unexciting city with mostly middle class appeal. Most of the city center is closed to the public at night. In other words, it is not a place that attracts people.

    Sacramento has done most of it's growing after the U.S.'s romance with the automobile began. Back in the 1950's people did not realize that they were polluting the world, just as in the third world the owners of a 2-stroke motorcycle or a baby taxi do not think about the pollution they add to their city's air. Being automobile-based, Sacramento has sprawled to an area at least 30 miles in diameter. It is hard to measure because the sprawl really extends nearly 50 miles in most directions.

    As a young adult in the 1960's I noticed little traffic congestion. My parents thought it would be great to live in the country and moved twice from our original home in Sacramento, the second move to a town 40 miles from Sacramento. We thought nothing of getting in the car and driving through the countryside to visit my parents.

    Now the price for our lack of foresight has to be paid. What we didn't understand was, that with the tremendous growth of people coming into the state, starting in the 1940s when my parents came after the war, and lasting even until today (most newcomers now are non-native immigrants), the additional cars on the road would make the traffic almost unbearable.

    Yes, a good transportation system would be nice. We had a trolley car system back before 1950, but it didn't last. We have had a bus system for over 40 years. But it takes 2-4 hours to go somewhere on a bus while it takes 40 minutes to go by car. We have a light rail system, but is only practical if you live within 5 miles of any of the light rail stations. I cannot see how the city or county of Sacramento can possibly build a public transportation system that is going to serve an area spread over 30 miles in each direction.

    The U.S. does have good examples of public transportation. Washington DC, San Francisco, and Portland Oregon come to mind. All of these were successful cities before automobiles came along, have a great wealthy base (San Francisco has a huge financial district, Portland is a big port, and Washington attracts wealthy people who hobnob with politicians), and were therefore able to concentrate it's population in a central area that could be serviced by a good transportation system.

    Yes, we are in a sticky mess. I drive in heavy traffic every day I go out. There are no sidewalks and walking along side a road with fumes and big powerful cars roaring past at 40 miles per hour is very unpleasant. I tried taking my bicyle to work, but I almost got run over by a bus. I have tried and tried to think of a solution. My work is 5 miles from the grocery store. My mother lives 40 miles away. How do I get along without a car?

    Yes, it is depressing. The solution will come when petroleum becomes more difficult to extract from the ground. It won't be a pleasant solution, but it will happen.

    In the meantime, China burns almost as much fossil fuel as the U.S - for winter heating. Yes, it is depressing.
    ...Karen Gaia

    August 22, 2000
    I think population control is putting ourselves in the place of God. What ever number of people are conceived on earth should enjoy life to best of there ability and with the help of all their piers.

    You say birth control does not cause abortion, but it does, it is the logical choice after the birth control method fails, or when someone does not know about birth control, we make them aware of it by killing their baby. The whole idea of population control is also the fundamental basis for any consideration of genocide in general.

    To be so concerned about the population, that we are urging countries to destroy themselves, is really an illogical, unwise, and unintelligent step for mankind.

    All the western countries are destroying their most important asset, their people. Only the USA is growing, and do to immigration not births.

    I also think it is a big lie about over population. Anybody can state frightening statistics and show gross pictures of poor people, but that is not proof or justification, for destroying our people.


    With improved sanitation and modern medical care, we have put ourselves in the place of God. We have improved our lives so that our lifespan has increased and therefore our numbers have quadrupled in the 20th century. There is no Bible or scripture on earth that justifies this sudden increase, or says that it is mankind's right to extend his live beyond the lifespan that God gave us or to grow to such numbers that we displace the plant life and animal life and destroy whole species that God created.

    People in the third world cannot enjoy life because they are struggling to live hand to mouth and are malnourished in the process. The land they are on cannot sustain them because there are too many people for the land.

    The people in the first world, even though they have stopped growing, are consuming like locusts more than than can be sustained, exploiting the people in the third world, and in the long run will end up poor like the people in the third world. While their growth has declined, their numbers are still many times larger than they were a century before.

    I do not advocate population control. We do not force or coerce people to limit their family size. I and most population-concerned believe that people should be allowed to choose their family size, and that there should be no forcing whatsoever involved, no forcing or coercing someone to take contraceptives or abortions, and no forcing someone to have unwanted children.

    Family planning, prevents abortion. Women, if given the choice and opportunity, would much rather use preventative methods rather than undertaking an abortion, which is the destruction of an unborn child. Family planning includes abstinence, delayed marriage, birth spacing, as well as modern contraception. Family planning protects the health of women, children, and families by allowing them to choose the size and spacing of their families. At least 120 million women in the developing countries would use family planning if given the information and access to the reproductive health care services that they so vitally need. Maybe you find this hard to believe, but you do understand that there are large numbers of women in the U.S. who willfully use contraceptives for the very same reason. When family planning is absent, women end up using abortion, even if it is illegal, even if it is dangerous and risky - they still end up doing it. There are numbers to prove this, but you don't believe in numbers.

    About 600,000 women die every year--one death per minute--from pregnancy related causes. Women who are malnourished, have a disease such as AIDS or tuberculosis, or have many children closely spaced together are at high risk - both to themselves and to their children, both born and unborn, if they get pregnant. Demographers estimate that the $15 million cut to existing international family planning programs could lead to: 450,000 couples deprived of safe and effective contraception; 260,000 unplanned pregnancies; more than 100,000 additional abortions; 9,400 maternal and infant deaths; and 7,400 serious illness or injury related to pregnancy and childbirth.

    It is too bad that you don't like statistics. To ignore them is to hide your head in the sand and to deny the horrible reality that is the consequences of humankind's playing God by extending his own lifespan beyond what is natural.

    It is time we started caring for the 6 billion people who are already here on this earth instead of greedily wanting more and more people that we cannot take care of. What possible good can come of continuing to want more and more people that the earth cannot sustain? Saying that God will take care of these people is like setting fire to your own house and then standing back and saying that God will come along and put out the flames. I question the motivations of people who want more people. I think it is because they are greedy people who think that more people will fuel the economy. They may be right in the short term, but wrong in the long term. It is a vast pyramid scheme that will die when resources run out.

    June 6, 2000
    Your website is awesome. Thanks for not being too scared to speak out! There are so many ignorant, closed minds... your site is positive, informative, and just a wonderful asset. Your hard work is much appreciated!
    Jennifer in Oregon

    April 27, 2000
    This is response to Alyssa, who writes:

    i live in California and I'm doing a research paper on overpopulation, if u could please answer some questions to help me I'd be grateful.

    Hi Alyssa,

    1- What is your definition of overpopulation?
    Of course this means that there are 'too many people' - so many that plant and animal species are disappearing; and so many that agricultural practices in the third world will not sustain the people that live there; and so many that use carbon-based fuel that the atmosphere is becoming dangerously over-heated; and so many that produce waste, pollution, and overcrowding (causing spread of disease), that the quality of life is threatened for all humans, not to mention animals.

    2- What do u believe is the cause of overpopulation?
    Humankind has become too successful at survival. Improved water supplies and the introduction of antibiotics are the two major contributors to the increased survival of infants - such a large portion of them died in earlier days.

    3- What can we do to help the overpopulation problem?
    We can convince the people of the world to have smaller families. This is now happening, but not fast enough.

    4- How does the modern overpopulation campare to other decades?
    In forty years our population has doubled.

    5-How does Americas population compare to other countries?
    America's growth rate is 1%, faster than other developed countries. Much of this is due to immigration from third world countries who have too few jobs or not enough sustainable farmland. A growth rate of 70% will produce a doubling of the population in 35 years.

    6- Do you think we can overcome overpopulation?
    The population of the world is expected to level off at 9 billion people in about 50 years. In the meantime, the question is: what will happen to the quality of life? Will very many plant and animal species survive?

    7- Do you think it is possible that the world will get dangerously overpopulated?
    If you mean: will diseases spread faster?, will global warming cause bad storms?, and will people starve or suffer malnutrition?, then the answer is "Yes".

    8- If yes, how long will it take until we reach that point?
    That depends on how 'dangerous' you mean. It is already happening.

    9- How many people do you believe the world can hold?
    Do you want them to breath clean air, drink clean water, live to at least age 60, drive cars, have a comfortable house, and include meat in their diet? About 2 billion. If they all live like Bangladeshi people and we don't mind the loss of plant and animal species - maybe 9 billion.

    10- What kind of actions will the world take when we reach our maximum population?
    If you mean what sort of actions will the natural world take, it will do what it continues to do: send hurricanes and earthquakes to crowded areas, continue to spread microbes so that diseases such as AIDs kills people, starve people who don't get enough to eat, and so on.

    If you are talking about what actions the human world will take, that is a good question. First we will have to determine what our maximum population. The Bangladesh government is already doing something: they have launched a vast media campaign for family planning and are providing contraceptives and IUDs to its populace. The birthrate in that country has reduced from 6-7 children per woman to around 4 children. But they hope to bring it to around 2 children someday - it just takes time.
    ...Karen Gaia

    May 13, 2000
    I've recently been studying population problems and controls in the United States for the company i work for. I was wondering if you know if there is a publication or an article that gives a sort of linear risk argument. for example, my friend said he read in an article somewhere that for every person in the US that is not born, ten people's lives in a less affluent nation are saved. If you know where this specific article/book is, or know of an author who wrote something similar, please send it to me. Thanx for the help.

    Dear Dan,
    Such an article could have easily been written somewhere by someone - there are many arguments and conter-arguments in the controversial areana of population and sustainability - but I haven't seen it or heard of it.

    The statement in the article would be true only if the distribution of wealth, resources, political will, work ethic, education, and modern technology were equally distributed throughout the world - but this is not the case, and the ability to evenly re-distribute them does not exist today. Countries can helped, to a small extent, by other countries - to become sustainable, but practically speaking, they must basically survive on the resources on hand.

    It is true that U.S. citizens consume much more than citizens in third world countries, but much of their material wealth and food availability comes from efficiencies derived from modern technology, efficiencies that the U.S. is attempting to share with other countries.

    Yes, the U.S. is contributing to global warming on a much higher per capita basis than any other country, but the undeveloped part of the world is contributing as much to global warming as the developed world - by the massive numbers of people practicing unsustainable agricultural burning and inefficient burning of fossil fuels. China's consumption of carbon will surpass that of the U.S. in just 5 years.

    Yes, the U.S. is speedily using up the world's supply of oil. But had the U.S. been better at birth control and immigration contol than it already is, and had only 200 million people today rather than almost 300 million, can anyone say that that oil would have gone to undeveloped countries to better their lives?

    Yes, it is true that the U.S. and other developed countries are overharvesting the oceans, minerals, natural gas, and timber from undeveloped countries. Often this exploitation has been done in greed, but often it is done in ignorance. Many times the undeveloped country is so poor that to not sell it's resources means less food, less safe water, poorer health, less education, etc, for it's citizens.

    Yes, a better economy is needed - a green economy that takes into account the long range value of natural resources.

    To the credit of the U.S., contraceptives and other birth control methods were invented, mostly by U.S. individuals, agencies, and corporations. These have helped U.S. citizens as well as the rest of the world to slow down the tremendous growth of the population that has occured over the last 100 years. Without birth control, the world would be in far greater trouble than it is today.
    ...Karen Gaia

    March 5, 2000
    Just was feeling really rotten...Miami Herald had a happy piece as to how the good times are encouraging baby boomers to have large families...this coupled with our phenomenal immigration rate is dire news.

    Finding your site was a nice perk up...thanks for being a lifeboat of sanity in this sea of lunacy..

    December 15, 1999
    My name is Elise Matteson, and I am doing a final project on the social problem overpopulation for my Social Problems class. I was wondering if you would be able to answer the following questions, and return the email to me. It would be incrediably helpful. Thank you!

    Hello Elise,
    I will try to answer some of your questions.

    >>1. Some groups believe that the overpopulation problem is "hogwash." Do you believe world population is a lethal problem at this time? Will it become a lethal problem in the future?

    >> 2. Many countries have informative groups who educate about abstinance and family planning? Are these education systems that are set up today to inform people about the hazards of population growth working? What other programs do you think would aide in solving the problem? >> 3. Having a ban on aboritions would increase the world's population, what does your orginization think about the pro-life groups? >> 4, Both Nixon and Ford proposed 1 child per family plans, what are your feelings on these proposals? Do you feel the U.S. needs at kind of governing? >> 5. The population growth rate is reported to be declining. Is there really a problem with population growth? >> 6. Many experts believe extreme chaos will occur when the population gets too large. What do you expect the outcome to be if the population contiues to rise, and eventually overfills the planet?

    Sept. 16, 1999
    I'm a high school student doing some research for my science class, I would just like to ask 1 question if that's alright...

    Other than birth control and contraceptives, what other ways are there to slow the American birth rate, such as government regulations or lower taxes for fewer children. Are there any of these in place? If not, what could be suggested?

    Hi Mike,
    Just yesterday there was an article in the paper about how the federal government was encouraging welfare people to have fewer children. Abstinence was one of the methods suggested, along with contraceptives. In some states welfare caps were applied to women having more than one child. This article is on my newscanner at

    In addition, encouraging girls to finish school and building their self-esteem, education of young men and women about the responsibilities of having children, and teaching mothers about spacing of children - all help towards reducing the birth rate.

    It is my opinion that many of the people having unplanned pregnancies have no real idea about finances or tax laws, so such incentives will not help in their case. In addition, birth control methods still fail, so why penalize the children, impoverishing them, because the parent's blew it? I'm a firm believer in investing in the country's future by investing in education and investioning in children's ability to 'make it' in life. Having poor, disenfranchised kids means ultimately having ignorant masses - some producing more kids, some ending up in jail, many on welfare.

    June 6, 1999
    Nice site! It's really matured since I last browsed it. I'm really impressed with the variety, quality and quantity of information available on your site supporting human population awareness. It provides for a broad insight into the causes and effects of overpopulation and the surrounding politics. Keep up the good work!
    Gregory M.

    May 4 1999
    I am preparing and annotating facts on a fifteen page report for a high level English class for "Controlling population to preserve the environment by encouraging two-children families." I plan on writing a proposal for the United States to devise a law to encourage families to have only two children. If families choose to have more than that, they will be taxed a considerable amount for each child after two.
    Are there any political leaders who actually have the same intentions as organizations like yours?

    Dear David,
    I'm afraid the term 'population control' has been out of favor among population groups these days. Since the Cairo Conference in 1994, and the resulting accord which was signed by 180 nations, voluntary family planning has been stressed. The fact is, in the United States, fully 1/3 of pregnancies are unintended, many of them among teenagers, who we all know are fairly naive about money matters and taxes. Married women also have unintended pregnancies. We need to concentrate on providing education and birth control methods to all women.

    There are quite a few politicians who want to provide more family planning to the world, including Bill and Hillary Clinton, Rep. Tom Campbell (R-CA), Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Constance Morella (R-MD), and many other. Philanthropists, too, are helping: Ted Turner, Bill Gates, and the Packard Foundation

    May 30 1999
    Dear Gaia,
       As a highschool student studying the causes, threats, and solutions to human overpopulation, I am interested in the opinion of a professional. The world's population is nearing 6 billion human beings, and climbing. What is your personal prediction towards the fate of the earth? Will organizations such as WOA and ZPG increase worldwide awareness in time to equalize birth and death rates before catastrophe, will it be serious disaster occuring as the earth reaches its carrying capacity that frightens the population into taking action to limit its growth, or are we all on an irreversible path to future carnage? Maybe overpopulation is not a threat at all? What do you predict?

    I do not consider myself a professional in the area of world overpopulation, but here is my opinion:

    People tend to dismiss the things that are happening, as they will continue to dismiss the things that will happen, as just 'life' or just localized events. Things such as starvation in Africa, the bleaching of the ocean's corals, the overfishing of the ocean, the weather extremes from global warming. So most people will not be calling these things catastrophes. One day (but not on the same day for everyone), they will wake up and notice that the quality of life has been deteriorating. They will notice that they cannot fish as they once fished, out of the river where they used to catch the family's protein to supplement their rice. They will notice that the soil produces less rice than it did. In the US, they will notice that the mountains and beaches have become terribly crowded, or that, while their parents could afford to live a nice 'ranchette' in a country setting, they must now live in an apartment builiding with squabbling neighbors next door, or while it used to take 30 minutes to get to work, it now takes an hour.

    In the meantime, the child birth rate of the world is coming down, but there are still large numbers of people in their child-bearing years - there are one billion teenagers today, and 2 billion people in their child-bearing years.

    So the population of the world will level off sometime - maybe by 2050. Some of the growth will be decreased by diseases such as AIDS, by increase in weather extremes, by starvation, by air pollution (lung diseases are the number on killer of young children), by mosquito-borne and water-borne diseases, and by war when people are forced to become migrants. The net result is predicted to be a population of around 9 billion people. Their quality of life will be considerably poorer than life today, and the environment will be degraded. Many of them will have to move elsewhere because the areas that they live now will not support the increased numbers.

    It is very important that we keep trying to get the growth rate down ( 8 billion is an improvement over 9 billion, and 7 billion would be even better, right?). We can do this by educating young women. This will delay their child-bearing years and result in fewer desired children per woman. Secondly, we can provide family planning clinics and contraceptives. Both of these methods, education and contraceptives, are proven and all it takes now is to increase our efforts.

    By the way, a large part of the credit for lowering the world's birth rates goes to the UNPFA - United Nations Population Fund.

    May 27 1999
    Hi Gaia
    Is population growth no longer a concern in the U.S., now that we are averaging two children per family?

    No, there is still the phenomemon called population momentum - where there are lots of baby boomer's children having babies.

    at, it says:

    In 1994, there were about 3.95 million births and 2.29 million deaths in the United States, resulting in a net natural increase of nearly 1.7 million more people. Net immigration added approximately 816,000 people. - From the US Census Bureau.
    The United States is one of the world's fastest-growing industrialized nations. By 2050, the nation's population is projected to increase by nearly 130 million people -- the equivalent of adding another four states the size of California.

    Feb 16 1999
    Where is the limit? 10 billion? 25 billion?
    Overpopulation can't be expressed in numbers!
    Lets assume there are only 5 people in the world, in each continent one. They are stupid, unable to get a clear picture of the world. And their habit is to fire nuclear warheads at each other. They have to convince the enemy that that they are right and the enemy is wrong. One thinks the earth has to be ruled by fire, the other believes earth has to be ruled by water, the third promotes the rule by air. So each of the five has a different believe how to rule. Each of them feels that there is overpopulation and 4 must go to avoid the complete destruction of the world.

    On the other side we have a planet with 100 billion. They are intelligent, and orient themselves on reality - not on beliefs. They know how to advance without destruction, they love their environment and their fellow men. They have a nourishing attitude towards all life. Through their intelligence they create advanced technology to maintain the wellbeing of all easily. Each of them feels there is not one too many.

    Teri at

    That's quite a dream! Maybe the same technology will allow us to live indefinitely and then there can be 200 billion of us! But we can handle it, right! You know, if we keep growing at our current rate, we will grow to be the same number as the atoms in the universe in just 17,000 years. But technology and intelligence will save us!

    Thank you defender of gaia for your swift response. We appreciate that you defend gaia against us (by us we mean humanity). If you act in a nourishing way to achieve your goal please send us more details about your strategy. If you are a destructive person and feel you need to cut down on humans please do us a favour and remove yourself first. Also gaia will thank you for it, because you have reduced the number already by one.

    wish you more love in your life

    Teri Brunner - defender of truth

    Teri ...
    1) The earth IS the nourisher. 2) Fortunately most people, unlike you, choose not to have an unlimited number of children - that is the formula and the strategy. 3) On humanity - you are not 'our' humanity - speak for yourself. 4) Defender of who's truth? Not 'ours'. 5) Technology and intellilgence is not god and believing so will lead to mass starvation and disease - so who's being destructive?

    Feb 16 1999
    Hi Gaia
    Just getting a few bees in the bonnet
    The official date for the world to pass the 6 billion mark will be October 12th, 1999. Will there be huge banners, walkathons, contraception parades, giant goodyear blimps in the shape of condoms, or will it come and go, like a silent grey blanket of fog, unnoticed by the press. Will the most letal non-event on earth just get a passing yawn from the media. On that eventfull day will the media drag another red herring, another white house saga, over this life threatening issue concerning the diversity and viability of our planet.
    What exactly is going to happen? Well nothing,the media will give it mention on section h, page 5 next to the classifieds. What could happen? If activists could reach into their pockets and consider this as a last gasp effort to draw atttention to this issue perhaps something big could happen. Does anyone know of any media events for the 6 billion mark? Lets get out the word and start working on it. What are you guys going to be doing?

    Hi Mike,
    Well, thanks for the challenge. I wish we could put on a parade or something. But us 'guys' are really just one lonely soul, sitting here just web spinning her little fingers to the bone, maybe managing to put on one or two small events a year, attending a few conferences put on by the other lonely souls in Sacramento: two ZPG activists in a field office, another ZPG type lone ranger crusader, an Audubon population guy in his office, and a UN population rep. You'd think we could get ourselves together, and we have, but we're spread pretty thin. We tried to get together a media event year before last during World Population Awareness Week in October, but it didn't come about.
    Anyway, what I'm trying to say is: we need more help! Especially at a grassroots level. So, look up your local organizations (population type), and pitch in, or start your own!
    I especially like the way you write and that alone would be an asset to the population cause.
    By the way, The Hague conference, sponsored by the UN, has given a lot of worldwide media coverage to the Day of Six Billion. So it's not a lost cause.

    Thanks for the reply. I sent my message to several population related web sites hoping to get a bite. I know of what you speak. Yes it is lonely out on the front lines of activism. Whatever happened to the 60s? The stock market and money making for the educated, more stress and less time for the rest.
    With a soaring population, freeways that are oxymorons, national parks that need advanced reservations, fishing holes that are sterile and a whole bellyache of other population related complications, I would expect a stampede into the loving arms of ZPG . But no, with recruits fewer in numbers than ever before, I only hear my echo, like some crazy deranged preacher, spreading the word. The earth is full, go figure.
    But I can not complain. I have hiked untreaded hills, fished in holes fighting full of scaly critters, and have travelled loney roads without fear of car rage, fender benders and carbon monoxide poisoning. Now I look around only to find the adaptability of man will be his worst enemy.
    So keep on spinning your web, perhaps you will catch a few souls willing to buck the human tide of ignorance. ... Mike

    Feb 16 1999
    I just logged onto your site and was taken back by the graphic on your main page. 
    It gives the implication that arabic and dark-skinned people are the targets of population control. 
    This can't be your intent, I am sure, but since there are no caucasian or asian faces in the picture could you see how this intent might be misconstrued?  I suggest a collage of faces to better represent the "world" population.

    I'm sorry, but I wanted a real picture for a real world, not a made-up one. Too much like propaganda. I could have as easily gone to China and got a crowd of Chinese people, or to Mexico City for some Mexican crowds. I have a crowd scene from the US, but the US's population problem is small compared to other countries. The fact is, it is not realistic to expect to get a real picture with a mixture of people types, especially when the ones that seem out of place are probably tourists. I think people realize this when they see a real picture.
    I don't think that dark-skinned people are inferiour or particularly prone to overpopulation, and I think it's too bad that any one would make that inference. There are crowd scenes all over this world, and most people know that they are of different colors.
    Actually, I thought that this crowd seemed relatively intelligent and somewhat well-off economically ....
    Secondly, I don't think that you should infer that because I am for overpopulation awareness, that I am for population control. Control means involuntary family planning. Do you have any suggestions on how I should re-word 'World Overpopulation Awareness' so that people do not think that I am talking about control?

    Jan 14 1999
    The human race is destroying itself, but not because of overpopulation. The problem is that people kill each other, sexual immorality leading to venereal diseases, abortion which has so many harmful effects. Why do you think there are many muslims in France? The problem is that there are not enough people in Europe to carry the work of the continent. One day Europe will no longer be the white european continent, that will be history. There is not an overpopulation problem, I am sorry to tell you, but it's just your especulation.
    yours truly ... Edwin

    It's true, Europe doesn't have a population problem. However, it's scary to know that the population of the earth has doubled in the last 40 years, and that people in other parts of the world are outstripping their land because of the burgeoning population. Where do you think those billions of people are going to go? Wake up, Europe is not the only place on earth. In fact, in terms of numbers of people, it is quite small. It will become even less important as time goes on and the earth's numbers grow and pull everyone's economy down along with theirs. And then there's air pollution, depletion of the ocean fisheries, and disease, which will affect the whole world.

    Jan 14 1999
    I am a grade 13 student in Toronto. I am doing a project on overpopulation and I was wondering if you had some information you could e-mail me.
    Thank-you very much for your time. ... Melissa

    Dear Melissa,
    There is lots of information on the internet at I can only guess at what type of information you want.
    Here are a few facts and statistics:
    1/3 of the population growth in the world is the result of incidental or unwanted pregnancies.
    Measuring from time of Christ Jesus, it took about 18 centuries for the earth to reach its first one billion inhabitants, one century to reach its second billion, one decade to get its last billion.
    This century began with 1.6 billion people and reached 2.5 million in 1950. Next year it will be 6 billion
    If fertility remained at current levels, the population would reach the absurd figure of 296 billion in just 150 years. Even if it dropped to 2.5 children per woman and then stopped falling, the population would still reach 28 billion.

    A tiny fraction - only 7 percent - of the world's people live in countries where population is not growing.
    The world is adding a city the size of Los Angeles every two weeks.
    While population is increasing by 1.5% a year, grain output has risen only 1.1%
    From the U.N. Development Program report: 1.3 billion people live on incomes of less than $1 (U.S.) a day. 800 million don't get enough to eat and 500 million are chronically malnourished.
    "Today, for every one of the more than 5.8 billion people on Earth, nearly six tons of carbon dioxide are spewed into the air annually. As a result of our activities, the atmospheric concentration of this heat-trapping gas has risen by more than 30 percent."
    For more answers, go to Frequently Asked Questions

    Jan 10 1999
    I live in a hilltown in western Massachusetts. I moved there after living in southern Cal and pretty much all over the world. Over the past ten years I've seen apple orchards, planting fields and otherwise pristene pieces of property cut into building lots--gone forever.
    People are moving here and building here (I bought and existing house) because they are leaving the overcrowded city like rats off a sinking ship. Soon, my little hilltown will be just another city with a K-Mart and McDonalds and too many people. The sad thing is I can remember when the place they are all leaving was a nice little town.
    One morning, while in Pittsburgh on business, I was stuck in rush hour traffic and came to the realization there were too many people for the roads.
    Since then, I have become very aware of the population problem. I cringe when I hear people who already have two girls say "we're going to try for a boy." Or, I have a large family because I'm Catholic (ha, ha). I have one, four year old boy and I'm fixed. Don't people get it?
    Please put me on your mailing list and let me know what I can do to get involved.

    Hello Dean,
    Very similar circumstances led me to the conclusion that there is a very serious problem of overpopulation. I live in California and remember clear skies and a time when we could go camping almost wherever we wanted. I am sick and tired of the congestion and want to move the foothills. The one thing that stops me is the additional miles I would be adding to my commute.
    I have no mailing list as yet, but my news scanner is updated regularly, which you can keep an eye on, pass the word to others, form a group in your area (click on 'Grassroots Ideas' from the index), pass along ideas and news items to myself and other groups, become knowledgeable in what Congress is doing and send letters to congressmen, and, if you can write and do research, or if you are an artist or photographer, please click on 'You can Help WOA!' in the index. Also, look at the 'Forum' page to see how people think on this issue. We are looking for ways to make overpopulation a household word.

    Jan 5 1999
    Dear concerned human;
    Tell me why human overpopulation is ignored as a problem by 99.9999999999% of humans.
    Tell me how you think there is a chance in hell that we can change this situation before the Collapse. Collapse? See Jay Hanson's site if you are unsure about the Collapse.
    I am serious about this. But, I do not think I really should be. Nobody else is. And it just makes problems for me. I am thought of as anti-social, crazy, stupid, worse, or some combination of these.
    So I say, why bother. ... Buddy

    Hi Buddy,
    People ARE paying attention to human overpopulation, the growth is slowing, fertility rates are going down. The question is: is the slowdown happening fast enough?
    All of us who care cannot lose hope. We just have to keep trying.
    Please tell me how to get to Jay Hanson's site.

    Jan 5 1999
    I enjoyed your web site! Lot's of interesting information. Unfortunately, I'm afraid that overpopulation is a self correcting problem. It seems that mostly stupid people are breeding! This will probably continue until massive starvation, war, disease and pollution will kill most everyone. End of overpopulation problem. The meek inherit the earth. Sound familiar?
    Good luck - I hope people will listen to what you're saying.

    I most certainly agree that is self-correcting. But I don't like to see them drag down the environment with them. Disease, economic mayhem, extreme weather, depletion of species, degradation of water and air quality, water shortages, overcrowding - are you going to hide out on another planet while all this happens?
    Plus, it is not just stupid people, but people in third world countries who may not be stupid, but have no better way, no means to access birth control.

    Dec 20 1998
    Hello to the members of WOA!
    It pleases me to see that the issue of overpopulation is finally starting to be brought into the open. I have been a supporter of all efforts to inform the general public about the tremendous danger that we all face from the mindless propagation of humans. Although I have TWO children, it is beyond my comprehension that in some parts of the world some women give birth to more than TEN in their life time! Recently, someone has sent me a copy of "The Life and Death of NSSM 200" by Stephen D. Mumford, published by the Centre for Research on Population and Security P.O. Box 13067, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27709, U.S.A. This document confirms what everyone knows and that is that TWO major religions, namely Vatican Catholicism, and Islamic fundamentalism are the major causes for keeping this urgent issue of overpopulation "under the carpet", and out of public discussion. I'd like to hear what you plan to do to counteract these backward ideologies in order to do something positive in bringing the human numbers to the "bearable " level.
    Greetings and good work ... Dan .. Wolfville, NS. Canada.

    Hi Dan,
    Glad to hear from you.
    I've heard of this Mumford book and it was recommended to me. However, I haven't had a chance to read it as yet.
    While the Vatican does influence family planning negatively, I'm not sure that it is to the extent shown in Mumford's book. For example, in the US the rate of contraceptive use varies little between Catholics and non-Catholics, while in predominately Catholic countries of Spain and Italy, fertility rates are the lowest in Europe. Even Mexico has brought its fertility rate down to 3.1, considerably lower than if no family planning were being practiced.

    As for Islam, I have the following from various sources:

  • Ayad Al-Qazzaz, CSU Sacramento: Family planning is permitted and often encouraged. 4/98

  • Iran's Family Planning Program Is Succeeding From Popline June 1998: Even Iran's supreme leader, the Ayatollah Ali Khomenei has said, "When wisdom dictates that you do not need more children, a vasectomy is permissible."
  • The Prophet Muhammad declared, "The worst problem is to possess plenty of children with inadequate means."
    Islam is often cited as an obstacle to population stabilization. But the Qur Muslim holy book, does not dictate large families, and many leading Islamic clerics support family planning.
  • Many governments with large Muslim populations consider their rates of population increase to be too high, and have undertaken intensive family planning efforts. In Indonesia - the world's largest Muslim nation - fertility has been significantly reduced through extensive family planning efforts sponsored by the government and supported by religious leaders.

  • ... Gaia

    You say:"For example, in the US the rate of contraceptive use varies little between Catholics and non-Catholics, while in predominately Catholic countries of Spain and Italy, fertility rates are the lowest in Europe. Even Mexico has brought it's fertility rate down to 3.1, considerably lower......." Well, people in these countries are only "nominally" Catholics and they do not pay any attention to the "Papal instructions". The book on ". . . NSSM 200" deals with the sabotage by the Vatican of the efforts to bring the excessive birth rates in developing countries to the level at which the stabilization of population could be achieved! I will quote from the "Reader Comments" of the book: "Analyzing the population-denial movement without mentioning the Vatican is like analyzing the Holocaust without mentioning Germany. Yet the Vatican even now receives kid glove treatment from the media, its efforts at the suppression of information and the spread of disinformation are rarely exposed. Dr. Mumford has taken off the gloves and exposed the Vatican's ruthless agenda. One can only hope that this book is widely read, for disinformation that downplays the population problem is still rampant, and propagated by many news sources, including those of the highest reputation" - Madeline Weld, Ph.D. Global Population Concerns - Ottawa.

    And, as far as your quotations showing that Islamists do not "object" to the family planing, the fact still indicates that in many Islamic countries and regions, women give birth to 8, 10, or even more children per life time! The Muslims in Kosovo region of Serbia have quadrupled their numbers in a short period of the last 45 years! The population of Pakistan is doubling every 25 or so years. Many regions in Afrika which are under the influence of Islam have tremendous birth rates and population growth. Look what is happening in Indo- and Malasia !! There, the Catholics and Muslims are trying to "outnumber" each other by excessive birth rates - under the blessings of the Pope and Iatolahs. And, everybody knows about the so called "pro-life" position of the Vatican which is at the root of preventing any advances in the realm of family planing!
    Anyway, good luck with your efforts to save the "GAIA" , but unfortunately, unless we stabilize the human numbers at a much lower level than the present SIX BILLION , all other efforts will be to no good.
    ....Greetings from Dan K.

    Dec 20 1998
    I noticed gaia in the e-mail address, I am well aware of the false religion being propagated about mother earth. In Christianity God said not to have other false gods before him he is a jealous mother earth is no different. Now on the subject of overpopulation this is nothing more than a lie of Satan, he is the little god of this world you know. Children are precious in the sight of God and to sacrifice them to the the mother earth is a terrible crime such as through abortions, etc. Population is slowing down, and also it is not our right to kill or force sterilization on women on other countries for population control this is a horrible crime.

    Typical over-reactionary your letter. You people never take time to think or to understand what other people are about. Earth is the nest which God created to nurture us and people like you are fouling it with your stupid over-reactionary belief in some weirdo named satan. My web site says nothing about forcing anyone.

    Dec 8 1998
    Your anti-choice undertones are absolutley disgusting. I am incredibly offended that you would actually insinuate that women believe that abortion is a common form of concious population control. Your hatred of women comes shining through when you actually list a valid link to the Ohio Right to Life. Someone looking up population control is actually reading the garbage that those clinic-bombing, doctor-murdering freaks believe in. You should take a step back into reality. You cannot blame world population on women alone. Though it may scare the tar out of you, a woman does have the right to control her own body in this country. I am encouraging you to change the wording contained throughout your web page, and to erase the links which connect the reader with such violent groups of people as right to life. Until then, your group will continue to be dismissed by the brousers on the internet. At least it will be dismissed by the brousers who also happen to be believers in eqality of the sexes and human rights. The companions you have made in "right to life" believe in the disregard of human rights when applied to the women of your nation. Thank you for your time.
    J. D. ... anonymous@boulder.Colorado.EDU

    Yipes! Engage your brain, Mr./Ms. Anonymous. For one thing, I think you've failed to determine my sex. I've left your email address in case my 'brousers' (sic) have anything to say to you.

    Dec 19 1998
    I am sixty years old. In my lifetime the population of the United States has doubled, the population of the world has tripled. I believe this is our most important environmental problem.

    I assume that these addtional warm bodies contribute to earth's warming. Is my assumption correct? If not, why not?

    It stands to reason. The question is: how much do human bodies (and their domestic animals as well) contribute to global warming? This sounds like a good theory for a scientist to test out - a pretty challenging test.

    Dec 8 1998
    Ten years ago, it took 20 minutes to commute to work. It now takes an hour! Wonder why? Too many people, in too many cars, trying to get to work. Think it's bad now? Check back in another ten years.
    Jerry Steinberg .. Founding Non-Father ..NO KIDDING! Vancouver BC Canada

    Dec 2 1998
    Montana is known for its harsh winters. Today, December 2, it never dipped below freezing--most years we would have experienced sub-zero temperatures by now. It is undoubtably uncannily warm.

    Nov 27 1998
    Are there people who choose to ignore the fact that overpopulation has great impact on the environment, the economy, safety and health and decide to go against the idea of controlling population growth? What are their main reasons in doing so?
    ...Thank you kindly. .. Sincerely, Ivy.

    Hi Ivy, I think that there are many people who haven't recognized the overpopulation impact. The reasons: they are listening to certain unrealistic religious leaders, they're wrapped up in their own little world, they're ignorant, and so on.

    Nov 27 1998
    In the past, abstinance was the only way to prevent unwanted pregnacies. But now, condoms are freely given out to students at a high school in my old neighborhood in Phoenix, AZ. This is a poor neighborhood where many of the teenagers' parents do not speak English. They have been misled by the words, "safe sex". In fact, I feel condoms and contraceptives which are only about 80% effective, actually encourage teens to have sex, and have it more often with the thought that its perfectly "safe".
    .... Irving, Arizona

    I agree. Condoms leak. Chemical contraceptives are considerably more effective, when used properly. Teenagers who are new to the whole idea of sex and contraceptives, rarely use them effectively, if at all. Many teenagers do not plan on having sex, but with kissing and petting, one thing leads to another. Maybe someone should develop the idea of 'smart sex'.

    Nov 7 1998
    I am doing a research paper on overpopulation and i needed a personal interview so while i was on the web page i saw your address.
    If you would, please answer these questions and reply.

    1. What do you think is the biggest threat of overpopulation?
    2. Since the sixties and publication of the "Population Bomb" birth rates have decreased in almost all countries. Is overpopulation even a major issue anymore?
    3. Why did you become so involved in overpopulation issues?
    4. In the new millenium do you believe overpopulation will cause more pollution, starvation , and famine?

    Hi Clint,
    I'm not sure what is the BIGGEST threat from overpopulation. But among the biggest threats are: pollution, starvation, disease, and deforestation.
    While birth rates may have gone done in many countries, they have not gone down enough. Anything above 2 children per couple results in a population increase. Additionally, the number of women of childbearing age is quite large these days. Large numbers of women in undeveloped countries are still having an average 6 children while the infant mortality rates have dropped due to improved water and antibiotics.
    I became involved when I saw how crowded places were becoming.
    Yes, I believe that pollution, starvation, and famine will continue to result from overpopulation in the new millenium, more so as the numbers of people increase.

    Nov 6 1998
    I would be honored and humbled if you would link my overpopulation website.
    It's not real fancy, but it does offer some good perspectives about the sprawl-population connection.
    I would like to buy out the domain name. What is on there now is propaganda from a young man who worships Julian Simon. And he seems to dislike environmentalists, like myself.
    Thanks, Todd Daniel

    Thanks, Todd ... It's a great page. I recommend it to everyone.

    Oct 10 1998
    Thank you for your kind reply to my message.
    We both struggle with the issue of contollling and manipulation people in order to get results we want!
    I wish I had the answer, but I do Not.... at least not yet, anyway. It is good to know that you are struggling with the same problem. Our buddy, Adolph Hitler had his solution... but I'm not sure we want to go there, do we???
    Whatever happens, we will all be in it together.
    Having as many children as possible victimizes the children as certainly as abortion. Whether the child dies from starvation and neglect or is injected with salt water and sucked through a vaccuum tube... the child is the victim.
    Mandatory sterilization of a woman after the second child... victimizes the woman... and the man gets off with no inconvenience, to impregnate whomever he wishes....
    The combination technology and greed of what is known as Western Civilization continues to bring both the best and worst of times. ie: Medicine, food, soft drinks, shelter, airconditioning, automobiles, T- V sets, satelite communications, central heating, electricity, water in and sewage out, herbicides, pesticides, hairspray, etc... but not enough to go around for everyone.....

    Sep 27 1998
    I am currently doing a project on overpopulation in my high school chemistry class. Part of this project is to find an expert, online or over the phone, and ask a question about the consequences and solutions of overpopulation. My question is as follows:
    I have been hearing about a child limit law enforced in China. It permits parents to have one child. Is this really a law and if so, does it work? What happens if you had more than one child?
    Thank you for your time ... Sarah

    Hi Sarah,
    I'm not prepared to give you a complete report on the child limit law in China, as I'm not an expert, plus even so-called experts don't always get it right.
    However, I have been to China, and I was told, that while it IS a law, rural people often avoid the law by sending grandma into the forest with the extra children when the census taker comes. The worst that usually happens is that the additional children do not go to school and the family does not get priority housing. In the cities, people usually follow the one child rule. In a crowded place like China, I don't know who would want to raise children in such circumstances.
    Does it work? China has just released a news story that efforts to control population growth have proven successful, with a population that is 200 million less than what it could have been had nothing been done. China claims that since the 1990s, the fast economic and social development has helped change people's ideas about children, and the population growth rate has fallen sharply.

    Oct 2 1998
    Just curious--
    I was perusing your website and was unable to find any references at all to breastfeeding as a means of population control.
    Breastfeeding mothers who practice exclusive breastfeeding to 6 months have much lower rates of pregnancy within the first 2 years after a baby's birth-- a time of greatest peril for mother & child in terms of the health risk from additionalpregnancies. Also, in groups where demand feeding & sleeping with babies are the norm (as in the !Kung people of Africa), babies are spaced an average of 44 months apart. Clearly, the farther apart the births of babies are spaced, the fewer babies that will be born in any woman's lifetime.

    Yes, I agree that breastfeeding is a form of birthcontrol. However, I made the assumption (correct me if I'm wrong), that in the parts of the world that are the poorest, women cannot afford alternatives to breastfeeding, so the vast majority of them do breastfeed. However, despite breastfeeding, they manage to have an average of 6 children apiece! While in the past, many of these children died in infancy, modern medicine has enable most of them to survive.
    Think about it: my grandmother, who was quite typical in her day, had 13 children, only 7 of whom survived early childhood. She breastfed all of her children.

    Dec 1 1998
    Dear folks: I got your address from the website and work within an evolving school for kids called Oz College. We are considering the development of an intellectually sound and brief essay that can be read outloud by elementary students to their class mates in their school classes around the country (and world) which enlightens them on our overpopulation issues and what they can do to help the problem as they grow up. Do you have any knowledge of such an essay in existence at this time and would you be interested in collaborating on such a project perhaps by providing information for it?

    Sorry, Steve, that I took so long in getting back to you. I have simply been swamped with email. I don't have a good essay for elementary students. However, there are lots of good materials on my web page at There are also good educational materials that you can obtain from ZPG, National Wildlife Association, and the Audubon Society (see Population Links in the left menu).
    Maybe someday I would be willing to collaborate when time permits. I would be glad to publish such an essay on the internet should your school come up with one.

    Dec 1 1998

    I am interested in finding out more about the problem of population growth and its effect on coral reef health and degredation.
    Are there any articles on the web or elsewhere that you can suggest?

    What a coincidence, but an article appeared Nov. 26 about the connection between coral reefs and global warming. It's at (click here) or you can get to it from the Population News section - News Scanner (you can get to it from the left index on main page). But the story will only be there a couple of weeks unless someone volunteers to summarize it for me so I can put it on the WOA Impacts web page.
    In addition, I just answered a question concerning the connection between global warming and population. Here it is:

    While is has not been proven that overpopulation does have an effect on global warming, more and more people, including insurance companies, are recognizing that there IS a connection.
    With more and more people, there is more agricultural burning, coal burning, and vehicle emmissions. When you go to China, you see smog due to coal burning. In Indonesia, you see smoke from burning. In the US, you don't see it, but pollution is there. This pollution affects the atmosphere, causing it to warm up. Many people think that this warming leads to violent weather patterns as well as warmer temperatures. September and October were the warmest Sept. and Oct. on record. The damage due to this year's storms and flooding were the most expensive on record.

    Nov 13 1998
    I'm a student working on some research. You mention in this webpage that overpopulation has an effect on global warming. Could you please briefly explain to me how this is?
    Thank you ... Gurinder

    While it has not been proven that overpopulation does have an effect on global warming, more and more people, including insurance companies, are recognizing that there IS a connection.
    With more and more people, there is more agricultural burning, coal burning, and vehicle emmissions. When you go to China, you see smog due to coal burning. In Indonesia, you see smoke from burning. In the US, you don't see it, but pollution is there. This pollution affects the atmosphere, causing it to warm up. Many people think that this warming leads to violent weather patterns as well as warmer temperatures. September and October were the warmest Sept. and Oct. on record. The damage due to this year's storms and flooding were the most expensive on record.
    I hope I've answered your question. ... Gaia

    Nov 7 1998
    I am doing a research paper on overpopulation and i needed a personal interview so while i was on the web page i saw your address. If you would, please answer these questions and reply.
    1. What do you think is the biggest threat of overpopulation?
    2. Since the sixties and publication of the "Population Bomb" birth rates have decreased in almost all countries. Is overpopulation even a major issue anymore?
    3. Why did you become so involved in overpopulation issues?
    4. In the new millenium do you believe overpopulation will cause more pollution, starvation , and famine

    Pollution, starvation, disease, and deforestation are big threats from overpopulation. I'm not sure which is the biggest.
    While birth rates may have gone done in many countries, they have not gone down enough. Anything above 2 children per couple results in a population increase. Additionally, the number of women of childbearing age is quite large these days. Large numbers of women in undeveloped countries are still having an average 6 children while the infant mortality rates have dropped due to improved water and antibiotics.
    I became involved when I saw how crowded places were becoming.
    Yes, I believe that pollution, starvation, and famine will continue to result from overpopulation in the new millenium, more so as the numbers of people increase.

    Nov 29 1998
    I am trying to find out why 70 is used as the number to determine the population's doubling you know why 70 is used? Please respond--it is worth 10 extra-credit points in my sociology class.
    Thank you ... Sandy

    Anyone care to answer this? math majors?

    Oct 25 1998
    It used to be that at any time of the year, Pike's Peak would have snow on top of it. I look out at it now, In October, When We would have had snow by now, and wonder if it is the current abserd weather patterns, or is it Global warming? Are the weather Patterns accually caused by Global Warming? I do know one thing though, Three years ago the view of Pikes Peak was Much Clearer.......
    I'm only 17, and Wonder why so meny people are having sex, why so meny people are driving cars, and am I abnormal for caring that At the Rate we are going I won't be able to see Pikes Peak on bad Days in three years?
    Sincerely, Robert W.

    No Robert, I do not think you are abnormal for caring. It's just that not enough people understand. Letters such as yours will help people become more aware.
    September and October were hottest Septembers and Octobers on record. Many people believe that Global Warming is here, which would explain the weather patterns.

    Nov 5 1998
    Hi, my name is Michael. I am a first year student at Ryerson Polytechnic University in Toronto, Canada. I have an essay on overpopulation in a course "Global issues in the Post-Industrial World". I was wondering if you could please send me info on this question " Is it true that human numbers will stabilize at some point in the future? Discuss the conditions which can contribute to the solution of the population explosion." My main solutions I have come up with are birth control, immigration controls and the education of women (raising the status of women by improving their education, health, and living and working conditions is essential for slower population growth).
    Are there any others that you have that are major solutions?

    Yes, Michael, the numbers are predicted to stabilize, possibly by 2035. And you have the contributing factors right, except that immigration is a local problem only, not at all a global problem. However you might add death by starvation and disease to the factors that will limit population growth - more 'solutions', although not very desirable.

    Sep 13 1998
    Hi, my name is Scott B, and I'm a junior attending high school in Van Nuys, California. This year, a teacher started an AP (Advanced Placement) Environmental Science class, and the reaction has been great. The class is full of smart people who really care and want to do something to help. I found the page under a search on OVERPOPULATION on Yahoo!, as part of a project for the class. I am sure that there are many people in the class who would be willing to help in any way they can. If you're interested, contact me back ,and I will speak with the teacher and the rest of the class. Thank you for the informative website! Hope to hear from you soon

    For WOA's answer to Scott's question, CLICK HERE

    Sep 21 1998
    Is it true it will take less time for a country with a large population to double its population than it will for a country with a small population to double its population?
    Sincerely, Kathleen

    Dear Kathleen,
    There are at least four factors that would cause a population to double: 1) how many children does the average woman have? 2) how early do the women in that country start having children (age 14? age 25?), 3) how much of the population is in child-bearing age? 4) and has medicine and food supply improved so that infants live longer?
    The population size of the country has little to do with it. Laos, for example, has one of the world's less dense populations. However, with a birth rate of over 6 children per woman, and improved medical care, Laos will double in population much faster than the United States, for example.

    Sep 12 1998
    If you have any ideas of what I can do as an individual to help educate people, please let me know. This is one of my pet projects. I really think the world is in grave danger because of the population issue.
    Thanks, Greg

    Greg, my apologies for taking so long in answering. I have simply been swamped!. I have started a 'News Scan' section on my 'Population News' page. Many articles, some more than others, deserve more time than I can give. Especially those which I have marked with a red asterisk. All I can manage now, for most, is simply to provide a link to the article, which disappears after several weeks. To do a really good job in educating people, it would be best to provide a synopsis of the more informative articles.
    If you have any inclination to spend time doing such synopsis, that would help a lot. There are a bunch of pertainent statistics in many of these new items. Ones that bear a prolonged exposure rather than just a few weeks.
    There is also a 'help' page for WOA at the bottom item on the left Table of Contents. Click on You Can Help WOA! and you will find other ways that you can help.
    Also, perhaps you have some suggestions.
    Thanks for the offer.

    Nov 10 1998
    Hi! I'm writing you again to ask a question from you about population. Here's the question: Should governments impose family planning guidelines on their citizens in order to control population growth?
    Thanks very much. Sincerely, Kathleen

    Hi Kathleen, I would like to first see voluntary family planning with widely available birth control and good educational programs for women and men. Many pregnancies today are unwanted.
    If things get really bad, then a government may have to impose some rules. Guidelines, however, are usually not 'imposed', but rather are suggestions. Suggestions are good.

    Aug 27 1998
    Where did you get the idea there was over population? From gov. tallies? That what they want you to think and be fooled. Check other sources- You must mean over population in the US then because you talk about immigration.

    If the immigrants in the last century didn't flow to the US- from Eu. take over the stwardship of the land fr. the original people and reproduce like coakroaches, we wouldn't be in this mess

    Americans are so concerned but - everywehere I go I see garbage, cans, bottles and cigarettes butts throuwn on the ground. The real, real problem is lack of respect for the Earth -

    Aug 21 1998
    Dear Woa:
    you are wrong on immigration. Your politically correct stance is clouding the issue. Russia has a falling population but there are many russians who are immigrating to the United States. Think about it and stop playing politics.
    Someone with a brain.

    Jul 11 1998
    I just read your articles pertaining to overpopulation. If Gaia is god then should she not be able to control her own problems maintaining sustainable development? God the Father is our creator like it or not.The Lord does not endorse abortion the reason being is he loves us. God is in command of his Realm he and he alone shall decide when the world is overpopulated. He loves us therfore he asks us to follow his comandments not suggestions. He is a judgemental God for good reason HE IS GOD!! Not Man where we enter his domain and try to rule it. If it was not for his Grace we could not survive sinful man would destroy each other as illustrated in your ideas on population control. The planet is not Gaia/Goddess read Romans chapter one 1 to 32 for the Truth.

    Well, there you have it folks. I've been reading the wrong literature! This person must be God himself, to be so damned sure. .... Gaia (who never made a claim to be God, just as people named Jesus don't claim to be Jesus Christ)

    Jul 11 1998
    It's not too late to establish January 1, 2000 as the day when a new sustainable U.S. population policy goes into effect.

    My idea is to use that date as the day after which the 3rd or more child is born into a family, could not be used as a tax deduction. Adopted children would be allowed as deductions. This would have no effect on family size prior to the date shown above.

    Hey, why not? This isn't a denial of civil rights. A couple can still decide to have a larger family, they just won't get the tax breaks for it.

    It's a small step for mankind.


    Greg, This might work for some people. But I have the feeling that there are so many who do not even think of tax breaks when they get pregnant. They need a better education. Plus many do not want to get pregnant, but do because of lack of money for birth control. And who suffers the effect of a lowered income? The unwanted child.

    Jul 4 1998
    Are there any birth control funds or charities I can give too...especially ones that don't fund abortions?
       Jim Carroll

    This is a good question. Offhand, I don't know of any that do not fund abortions. But I'm no expert. Planned Parenthood funds birth control, but also is pro-choice. The Alan Guttmacher Institute seems to be research only. This might be a worthwhile choice for your charity.
    If you do find organizations that do not fund abortion, I will be glad to put them on WOA's web page.

    Jul 2 1998
    You people are giving me a headache! There is no such animal as "overpopulation". You need to simply fly around the world and look out the airplane window. If everybody wants to continue to live in the hell hole big cities that's their mistake. People that continually worry about this nonsense usually live in Los Angeles, New York, Paris, Rome, Miami, etc. They don't get out much. Take a bufferin.

    Jun 25 1998
    Exactly what are the predictions about population growth? Will people living longer have an benigh effect. I noticed on the populaiton web sites "KZPG overpopulation" that a wealthy person can now buy antiaging drugs (costs about $7000 a year) to extend a lifetime by at least 20 more active years. Consider the effect of this medical possibility on death rate as the price comes down. Will technolgy reopen another pandora box? Once again we will embark on a technological breakthrough with blinders on, without a global discussion of it's effect on a sustainable planet.

    Transplanted organs might keep our aging systems going but are there any transplants for the oceans and the forest? Fertility drugs will help those that are sterile but should procreate at a rate that will curdle? Viva Viagra, will let us get it up even without a facial tuck? And now this new antiaging drug wil get us to a hundred but will Gaia think it a blunder?

    Yes, will our retirement years be a time to spend our fortune 500 stocks and gab about the youth. Will the innocent youth of tomorrow be our slaves of entertainment or be given our love, respect and stock, not in fortune 500, but in a sustainable planet?

    Mike Weatherby

    Jun 1998
    World Population a Permi's View
    Regarding your concerns on World over-population I would also be concerned but only when the resources of the World can no longer sustain the population......I know that in most places in the world a family of two adults and three children can be fed on no more land that an area of 30 feet square for a whole year, I suggest you learn about the Permaculture revolution which is quietly and effectively sweeping through many third world countries and in the middle of some of our most populated cities, your arguments are from a pessimists who have given up on fighting food production monopolies such as Monsanto and Pivot.
    John Ernst

    John, I think it's good that there are ideas like Permaculture and Sustainability and Breastfeeding as a means of Birth Control, but the question is: are they fast enough? The world's population growth is like a runaway train!

    Dear WOA,
    I love your web site! While doing an overpop. report on Mexico (I'm in 6th grade) I found your site to be imformative, yet fun, a combination rare in gradeschool. I just hope that people will stop being so ignorent and face the facts: we do have a carrying capasity, and we're getting dangerously close to it. While people are to stubborn to realize that if they don't give up their right to have 10 children if they want, they're only making it so that we'll all loose our right to space, food, etc. in the future.
      : Future mother of 1,
       Julia D. Johnson

    "It is no business of the u.s. to travel the world and enter The bedrooms of its citizens to force them to limit The size of their families. The number of children A family chooses to have is a fundamental human right That no government on earth can interfere".

    "This problem is well on the way to taking care of itself, without the heavy hand of govt. World fertility in the last 30 years has dropped from 4.9 to 2.9 births per woman. 2.1 is considered replacement level. Those who demand emergency programs are either ignorant, or have ulterior motives".

    Is the issue important? The above two were - opinions on UVOTE

    I am a senior at --- school in Plymouth New Hampshire. I'm doing an report on how over population can effect political conflict in any area of the world, and I was wondering if you could send me any information or you point of view for my report. Anything will be a great help. Thank you,

    Dear Erik,
    I am happy to see that you are interested in the topic of overpopulation. It is your generation that will observe the consequences of overpopulation as well as produce the solutions. I ask that you keep your eyes and ears open to the way the world is now and has been as you remember and see if you can see, in the years to come, the deterioration in the quality of life for not only plants and animals, but for people as well. More of this reply to Eric... click here

    As a subscriber to the KZPG mailing list, I saw the notice about your web site "World Population Awareness" (WWW.Overpopulation.Org), just visited and find it very good and timely. Everybody with a web browser and at least half a brain should be required to visit this site periodically. -Brian Cuthbertson, Austin, Texas

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