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Monday, October 29, 2007
  Under 2 billion within 100 years
I just finished reading The World Without Us by Alan Weisman. This is one of the most interesting books I have ever read. It delves into many topics that I find fascinating.

Toward the end of the book, he mentions a UN study that shows that if each fertile woman on Earth were to limit herself to giving birth to just one child, the population of the Earth would be less than 2 billion within 100 years. The current population is over 6 billion, but the number of humans that the planet can sustain in balance with nature is 2 billion (this is also covered in the book).

It's something to consider. I am not having kids, so maybe I could sell my right to have a kid, like a carbon offset? Haha.

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Comments:
Margaret, that is a brilliant idea. We should be compensated for our efforts to stop overpopulation.
 
I saw that book a while back and didn't add it to my wishlist at the time. It sounds really interesting. Thanks for mentioning it.
 
You know, if we really want to capture the true environmental cost of having children, your idea is an interesting one.

Unfortunately, too many people think regionally rather than globally about population -- that's why the anti-immigrant folks frequently take a population angle.

When I mentioned, rather forcefully, to a coworker that Jack would be an only child, he said "but there aren't enough people in North America!" Given that we consume as much as 3 in Europe and probably 10 people in Africa (or more!), I'd say the "real" population of NA is probably well over two billion.
 
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