Zero population growth: only way out of world population overload

    By Frosty Wooldridge | 27 February 2013
    Church and State


    Demographic expert Jason Brent from Las Vegas, Nevada, brings readers a realistic assessment to ponder and act upon. He understands the adverse consequences piling up in America and the world as to human overpopulation overload.

    As the human race gallops toward adding 3 billion within the next 37 years, and the USA expects to add 138 million by mid century—no one will speak of the consequences. The eminent population scientist Dr. Paul Ehrlich said, “All causes are lost causes without limiting human population.”

    Jason Brent brings that home in this latest interview with me.

    “There are three, and only three, ways that human population growth can be reduced to zero or made negative, if that is necessary for our species to survive,” said Brent.

    They are:

    1. By war, with or without weapons of mass destruction, starvation, disease, rape, murder, ethnic cleansing, concentration camps, and other horrors beyond the imagination, when humanity has exceeded the carrying capacity of the Earth. At this point it is not necessary to define or explain what is meant by the ‘carrying capacity of the Earth’ as it is not essential to the analysis set forth in this essay.

    2. By the voluntary action of all of humanity prior to the human population exceeding the carrying capacity of the Earth. If any group or even if a single-family failed to control its population the entire program would fail. For example, Mr. Justice Scalia had nine children and if each of those had nine and if in each generation each offspring had nine, then in just 11 generations about 31 billion Scalias would live on the planet. That is the power of compound growth.

    3. By coercive population control prior to the human population exceeding the carrying capacity of the Earth.

    I challenge anyone reading this essay to set forth another method by which the human population growth can be reduced to zero or made negative. Since no rational person would choose or desire alternative number one above, there are, in reality, only two choices—numbers two and three above.

    Since the Earth is finite and since population grows in a compound manner, at some point in time population growth will cease. No power in the heavens or on Earth will permit infinite population growth on the finite Earth. In fact, some experts (whatever that word means) have set forth strong arguments, both factually and logically, that support the proposition that in order for humanity to survive on this planet for any reasonable period of time and at any reasonable standard of living population must be reduced to 1 billion or less. Among those experts are James Lovelock, of Gaia fame, and Prof. David Pimentel of Cornell University. Humanity ignores at its collective peril those experts (in addition to Lovelock and Pimental) who argue that it is necessary to substantially reduce population below the current 7.1 billion (2011) for humanity to survive. For those of you interested in learning about the number of human beings the planet can support I urge you to go to (it is spelled with a ‘k’ and not a ‘c’) and read the brilliant analysis of Chris Clugston.

    I challenge anyone to present a logical and factual case which supports the proposition that humanity will voluntarily reduce its population growth to zero prior to humanity exceeding the carrying capacity of the Earth.

    I do not merely challenge, I defy any human being to present a logical and factual case which supports the proposition that humanity will not only voluntarily reduce its population growth to zero, but humanity also will voluntarily reduce its actual number to some amount substantially below the current 7.0 billion prior to the commencement of alternative number one above, assuming that such a reduction is necessary. And the previous statement applies with greater force when the estimated 9.2 billion of our species which will inhabit our planet by the year 2050, providing that no catastrophes prior to that year reduce the estimated population below 9.2 billion.

    Every right that an individual has must be balanced against the possibility that upon exercising that right the individual will cause substantial harm to all of humanity. While every human being theoretically has the right to decide how many children he/she will have, that right cannot be exercised in a manner that will cause harm, death and destruction to all of humanity. Any intelligent analysis of all of the major problems presently facing humanity must come to the conclusion that by exercising his/her individual right to have more than one child the individual will cause very substantial harm to all of humanity.

    There isn’t a major problem presently facing humanity which can or will be solved if population continues to grow above the current 7.1 billion. There isn’t a major problem presently facing humanity which will not be solved or ameliorated if the number of our species is substantially reduced below the current 7.0 billion. An individual does not have the right to have more than one child. An individual may not exercise a right if that act results in the deaths of billion, or even millions

    I challenge any human being to present a logical and factual case for the proposition that protecting the ‘individual right of every human being to determine how many children he/she has’ will result in humanity achieving zero population growth prior to our species exceeding the carrying capacity the Earth. I do not merely challenge, I defy any human being to present a logical and factual case for the proposition that protecting the right of an individual to determine how many children he/she has will result in a reduction in the number of human beings, if such a reduction is necessary to prevent the deaths of large numbers of humans.

    It is impossible for anyone to present a logical position for the failure of the leaders of humanity to at least consider and evaluate all of the factors in favor of or against coercive population control when that failure could/would lead to the near term horrific deaths of billions of living, breathing human beings.

    Throughout all of human history no nation has been able to reduce population growth to zero without abortion and there isn’t any reason to believe that zero or negative growth can be achieved today without abortion. Since continued population growth will result in humanity exceeding the carrying capacity of the Earth and will result in the horrors set forth in alternative number one above, humanity has a choice—make abortion easily available to all of humanity or deny abortion and cause the deaths of billions.

    The failure of the leaders of humanity to at least consider and evaluate all the alternatives to voluntary population control is an act of criminal stupidity which causes all such leaders to become criminals who will cause the horrific deaths of more people than all the tyrants and mass murders that have ever lived.

    Frosty Wooldridge has bicycled across six continents – from the Arctic to the South Pole – as well as eight times across the USA, coast to coast and border to border. In 2005, he bicycled from the Arctic Circle, Norway to Athens, Greece. In 2012, he bicycled coast to coast across America. His latest book is: How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, copies at 1 888 280 7715/ Motivational program: How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, click:

    Al Bartlett – Democracy Cannot Survive Overpopulation

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    1. For political and human reasons, I would advocate a two child, rather than a one child policy. Purely replacement value, and you are still going to have those who want none, along with natural deaths and crime.
      What isn’t mentioned is euthanasia – necessary for both individuals who are terminal and wish it to stop – but also those who simply do not wish to be here.
      So too, will the sensitive topic over the value if life, especially in the case of people who have no opportunity for a self sufficient life – individual rights can’t trump collective ones?

      • Dear Rebecca,
        Very thoughtful ideas. Actually, according to Dr. Jack Alpert,, we need to move toward one child families if we hope to survive the 21st century with any kind of human decency and intact civilizations. Our numbers are simply overwhelming the carrying capacity of the planet as we are on course to add 3 billion in 37 years and continue with adding 1 billion every 12 years after that. As to euthanasia, I concur with you. Terminal individuals must be given the means to exit themselves. Dr. Kevorkian was decades ahead of his time. We must speak to the leaders of the major religions to move them out of their myopic, ancient and unworkable stances on birth control and abortion. Perhaps the next Pope will be more enlightened, but it will take a Warp Speed jump for the Catholic Church to enter the 21st century. We can only hope. FW

    2. This is the first time I have seen anyone recognize the concept that is described in #2 above. That is a vital concept to understand. It must be rephrased a bit to recognize that even if the Scalias created 9 children in each successive generation, there will never be 31 billion Scalias alive at one time. The Earth simply cannot provide for that many, which means that if they attempt to create 9 in each generation, they will cause the death of children. To elaborate; if the children become adults, and the adults are determined to average too many children, the environment has no choice but to kill the excess children so they cannot become adults and contribute to generating more children. In short, the #2 example shows us the morality. We have a moral obligation to ensure we do not average too many children.

      More specifically, if we thought that a stable population was OK, then we each have a responsibility to monitor our own contribution. We cannot create more than 2 children, and no more than 4 grandchildren for our parents, and no more than 8 great grandchildren for our grandparents. So Scalia's children, have a moral obligation to collectively limit themselves to 4 total grandchildren for Antonin. I call this TwoFourEight.

      However, we must not be confused and think that stabilizing our numbers at the current 7 billion is OK. Right now, we must consume resources that are required to keep our numbers alive, faster than those resources renew. We do not know how to keep 7 billion alive at one time without for example, burning oil. We know oil will become scarce. We know that we have no clue how to keep the current 7 billion alive when that happens. That means we are behaving in a way that, to the best of our knowledge, will kill people in the future. This is obviously immoral behavior according to everyone's morality. We must behave in a way that gets our numbers down to where we are no longer consuming resources, that we must have in order to keep our numbers alive at one time, faster than they renew. Therefore we must at least limit ourselves to OneTwoFour.

      In addition to the moral lesson that #2 shows us, it also shows us that demographers don't seem to comprehend this. This concept shows us that the techniques that demographers use: sampling, averaging, and extrapolating, are inappropriate for the task of understanding what is happening with fertility rates. The sampling they do filters out the information that some groups are behaving exactly like the horror scenario that is described in #2. Therefore demographers, the acknowledged experts on these sorts of population issues, are oblivious to what is really happening. These high fertility groups, or more specifically the beliefs that fuel this high fertility, are becoming proportionally larger and larger compared to other beliefs. Not only are demographers failing to provide the required education, they are making lousy predictions based on the Demographic Transition Theory that provide a false sense of security.

    3. How are we to instruct the children; how are they not to repeat our mistakes; how are all of us at a minimum to try and go forward sustainably, if those elders with knowledge refuse to share an understanding of what the best available science tells us about the population dynamics of the human species that is causing us to grow exponentially in a patently unsustainble way and by so doing, to destroy everything we claim to be protecting and preserving for those who come after us?

    4. I believe that a reduction in the population of humans can be implemented by giving peoples who have a desire to go to heaven a first class flight. Most of the conflicts worldwide stem from religious differences; I suggest that giving people that which they desire most would be the best course of action. Admitting them to their heaven would aid in the problems associated with overpopulation and those elected to do carry out the task would be offering those select few what they really want. I hold no allegiances to any particular form of faith, suggesting that all religious souls should be privy to this spiritual elevation.

    5. The AWAREness Campaign on The Human Population was founded in 2001. Since that moment I have seen it as a moral imperative to continue the work I’ve been doing for many years now: getting the message out and explaining to as many people as possible that human overpopulation of the Earth is occurring on our watch, that it poses profound existential risks for future human well being, life as we know it and environmental health, and that robust action is required starting here, starting now to honestly acknowledge, humanely address and eventually overcome.

    6. All this poppycock about how the majority of people even deserve to exist is a lie. People (and I mean the majority), need to be erased from the face of the earth, for mankind has become the destroyer of his own existence.
      This is a well known fact among the intellectual minds, and for the people smart enough to realize and have the facts,they need not guess what the outcome will be.End –END–OF–STORY !

      Mankind was too self centered and individualistically minded and doomed from the start!!!!!

    7. It;s not even an issue of educating people and explaining the risks of overpopulation anymore. We are simply at the point where steps must begin, and the only country with the influence is the US, with European support. For all the criticisms against them, China is the only society that has addressed population growth and must work with the US in the Asian sphere.

      Quite simply, surplus humans must not be born. There are no unethical or immoral issues around people who don't exist. But, nations must come up with their own solutions. To exceed target fertility rates, say of 2 or less, then the west and China would have to take economic measures against these countries who fail. The USA boycotted Cuba because they didn't like the way they did things, and population growth is an even bigger issue than keeping poor Cubans from fixing their roofs. When trade and aid money cease you will be surprised how quickly nations will start educating their people.

      Depopulation will also be an economic catastrophe for the west, since our societies are based on consumption and growth, but plans will also have to be drawn to deal with this transition. The reality is that in the future everyday life will be more like it was 200 years ago, than it is now.

      The question I have is who is out there to lead this movement? Who do I, and millions of others cast my vote for who can actaully get this done? Who has one foot in the door that we can get behind?

    8. It is a moot point and a useless discussion. We humans are breeding ourselves out of existence at a breath taking rate. We are but one solitary species with no more “right” or claim to live and exist on this planet then any other. Extinction is one of the necessary forces driving evolution to do its work and that includes us. 99.99% of all species of the plants and animals that have ever existed are now extinct. We will join them as is our lot. It has nothing to do with religion, ideology or philosophical bent. The Earth has over four billion years doing things its own way and we have a few thousand trying to do things our way, at best. Which force do you think will win out in the end? The Earth? Or a bunch of navel-gazing, semi-literate ape descendants? Go ahead. Think about it. The answer should be clear. Even to a human.

    9. With the population bulging, beyond the capacity for the earth to carry it, we are on the brink of self destruction, no turning back, no where to go. All it will take is one glitch, in our man made matrix and we have a mass loss of population, that is beyond our control. Most people don’t seem to be concerned, with any of the issues, that face all of us, we continue to consume at the same rate, the popular going green is out the door, mass consumption is in, we are using up natural resources faster than ever, driving more than ever before, consume consume consume, like a bunch of rats that got into the grain silo. We seem scattered and frantic, knowing something is going to happen, but we just want to get ours, whatever that may be. So we are facing the inevitability of a giant crash or the end of this world as we know it. The End.

    10. There is one basic error this man makes – all his ideas apply to the way we live at the moment and they aim to conserve our present life style, our present form of economy, present distribution of property, and so on. The owner of a land that feeds him and his family doesn't need a polititian or ideologist to tell him how many children he/she can afford, the owner of his/her own workshop/business doesn't need anyone to tell him/her how many childre he's able to feed. On the other hand – the modern slave who doesn't really owe anything and is working for someone else think about population number as a pure abstract – he is a part of an abstract "humankind" that is being managed by some political leaders far above his/her head and the problem of over- or underpopulation is way beyond his/her understanding and control. Give us control over our own life and destiny and we won't have to worry about the number of kids we can or should have – it will be much easier to figure it out for each family.

    11. As time goes on, I become more and more amazed at you pseudo-intellectual professors, doctors, politicians, "religious" leaders and regular folk (sheep) who call for the elimination of the human race. Where did you come from? What happened to you? What kind of communistic, Satanic drivel have you been listening to?
      I feel that all you human haters should lead the way. Become trailblazers and examples to all of us ignorant, backwards types. Show us that resolve and belief you have that is burning so fiercely inside you. Besides, since this article has been written and comments left, all of you have continued to foul the earth up with you constant CO2 filled exhaling. The poor innocent grass under your feet has been crushed and brutally murdered. Let's not even talk about the foul waste you must flush down the toilet each day and the garbage you create for landfills with your constant eating and general consuming. What about the pollution your cars and planes are filling the air with? It would seem that you are committing genocide each day you live. How can that be possible? This must stop before it's too late! Whichever method you choose, end it all now. Stand up for what you truly believe. Best case scenario, all of your followers will follow suit like the good little lemmings that they are and free the planet from your subjugation.
      As a special favor please post videos of your demise so the rest of us may be inspired by your steadfastness or entertained by you infinite ignorance. Thank you in advance.

      • It is painfully obvious you are a part of the problem, and not the solution. Your Pollyanna remarks are a prime example of why the breeders of this world would rather satisfy their selfish needs, and destroy the world, than stand up and make a sacrifice. Go ahead and keep your head in the sand, ignore the big picture, and sentence your future kids to a life of misery, hardship, starvation, and death. I am sure they will thank you!


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