Thursday, January 24, 2013

Attenborough: "Humans are a plague on Earth"

The Telegraph reports:

The television presenter said that humans are threatening their own existence and that of other species by using up the world’s resources.
He said the only way to save the planet from famine and species extinction is to limit human population growth.
“We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now,” he told the Radio Times.
Sir David, who is a patron of the Population Matters, has spoken out before about the “frightening explosion in human numbers” and the need for investment in sex education and other voluntary means of limiting population in developing countries.
“We keep putting on programmes about famine in Ethiopia; that’s what’s happening. Too many people there. They can’t support themselves — and it’s not an inhuman thing to say. It’s the case. Until humanity manages to sort itself out and get a coordinated view about the planet it’s going to get worse and worse.”
It is too bad that Attenborough is so busily preaching his Malthusian doom that he doesn't actually have time to keep up on demographics. Even the doom and gloom U.N. acknowledges that due to declining childbirths, the Earth's population is going to peak at about 9.5 billion in 2050, and will start to decline in 2070.

Even other environmentalists don't agree with Attenborough's position, noting that the best way to reduce the impact of population on the environment is to lift people out of poverty.

However, getting back to Attenborough, if he is serious about population control, maybe he should take a closer look at the solution proposed in Logan's Run. After all, "Sir David" readily admits in the interview cited by the Telegraph that he and his profession are no longer necessary. Doesn't that make him part of the surplus population? I'm guessing, however, that he would not agree in theory or practice that he should be part of the population to be reduced.

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