Cross posted from Biodiversivist

…but it sure could help. From a study recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
 

All donations matched! Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free.

…reducing peak population to roughly 8 billion, for example, could save 29 percent of expected greenhouse gas emissions.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

In addition, if people are allowed to retire at a reasonable age (there is a trend to increase retirement ages), some industrialized countries could also see a very large drop in CO2 emissions.

On the negative side, increasing urbanization could increase emissions because that trend tends to go along with greater wealth and wealthier people tend to do stupid things like build large homes, drive large cars, and buy second homes.

I suspect that if a global meme were to get started that super efficient, solar enhanced small homes and cars were cooler than the cavernous status symbols of today, urbanization and the wealth that follows could drive emissions down more than the study estimates.

 

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.