Where’s the contraceptive for overconsumption? [VIDEO]
“What we need to really find for the future is the contraceptive for overconsumption,” says Mother Jones environmental correspondent Julia Whitty on PBS’s Need to Know.
In this video segment, Whitty, who wrote a MoJo cover story on population last year, talks population with Phillip Longman, a fellow at the New America Foundation and author of the 2004 book The Empty Cradle: How Falling Birthrates Threaten World Prosperity And What to Do About It.Vodpod videos no longer available.
Whitty sums up the main dilemma: “This is the paradox that I wrote about, which is: The greatest way to slow population growth is to reduce poverty. But the greatest way to run out of resources is to increase wealth. And this is what we face as we move forward is how to balance these two issues.”
Longman adds: “The relationship between the environment and population is not straightforward. For example, the pattern we’ve really seen over the last 20 or 30 years is: birth rates come down, families get smaller, each person consumes more. The classic example is China, where the one-child family is the norm, and yet that one child consumes enormous amounts more than eight of his peasant forebears. We can’t necessarily think that just because population growth is moderating — and it is moderating very fast — that our environmental problems are solved.”
Need to Know is a partner with Grist in the Climate Desk project.
More stories in this series:
Yeah, yeah, you know — the world population is hitting 7 billion this year. Here are some facts about the world’s people that you might not already be familiar with.
Here’s a population angle you might not have considered before: Family planning can help women adapt to climate change that’s already happening.
“Science” magazine took the good bits from its recent special issue on population and squished them into this handy video.
Population growth tends to get blamed on other people. But actually the population problem is all about me: white, middle-class, American me.
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