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20-04-2012, 17:40   #1
Cawk n bawllz
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Population control

Why is population control never ever addressed in politics?
They all talk about improving agriculture and infrastructure to support a growing global population but global resources are not infinite!
It's predicted that we'll have a population of 9 billion by 2040. We currently have 7 billion and life is already getting worse and worse for a lot of people.

We should be doing what we can to stabilize the human population. One child per couple for a few generations would thin us out nicely for a happier, more plentiful future for everyone.
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20-04-2012, 18:12   #2
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Why is population control never ever addressed in politics?
They all talk about improving agriculture and infrastructure to support a growing global population but global resources are not infinite!
It's predicted that we'll have a population of 9 billion by 2040. We currently have 7 billion and life is already getting worse and worse for a lot of people.

We should be doing what we can to stabilize the human population. One child per couple for a few generations would thin us out nicely for a happier, more plentiful future for everyone.
It's not developed western countries which have rocketing populations, its generally developing or third world countries which are experiencing population booms. According to projections the populations of countries such as Germany, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Belgium and some more will fall by 2060. Whilst India will overtake China as China's population falls. Whilst Ireland's will just be starting to fall again by then.

Therefore, it is basically none of our business how lesser developed countries deal with their populations. I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate former colonial powers telling them what to do either.
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20-04-2012, 18:31   #3
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Regardless of where it's happening, it needs to be addressed. Are they addressing it?
You say population will fall by 2060 as if it's a positive thing. In 2060 we will already be in deep hot water. It certainly will fall by then due to starvation and suicide.

But here in western society, even if our population is not growing as fast as developing nations, we're still consuming oil and resources much much faster than they are. So I think we should take some responsibility ourselves.
Even here in Ireland we have more people than our economy can support. People are emigrating and, sadly, committing suicide and we're still in steep decline.
Obviously I don't know all there is to know about this but I'm just telling it as I see it.
The focus is always on what we can do to facilitate more and more people and a discussion about controlling population is just never brought to the table.
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20-04-2012, 19:40   #4
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You aren't seeing the big picture as measured over many decades and are overly concerned with short term difficulties.

The rate of global population growth is declining. As populations become more educated they have less children. In the developed world we have the opposite problem of too few children being born as the trends that reduce the population rate keep on going after crossing the replacement level. This is a policy challenge that has not been solved yet.

In the historically short term context of the next 50 years before world population starts to level out the world will just have to concentrate on greater efficiency and non-environmentally destructive energy sources. There are massive efficiency gains to be made in agriculture without compromising the environment. Renewable energy sources will largely replace fossil fuels over the next 50 years.
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20-04-2012, 20:23   #5
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Do you really think the current recession in Ireland and globally is a short term difficulty? It's just the tip of the iceberg.
Maybe the rate is declining but the population is still growing.
The population explosion we've had in the last 200 years is thanks to fossil fuels. It supports the infrastructure which makes a human population of 7 billion possible. No renewable energy source will have the potency of fossil fuels to maintain things as they are.
The entire global population as it is now will not survive the decline from fossil fuels to renewable energies.
The capitalist model we live on depends on constant expansion, infinite expansion where as the resources we depend on are finite.
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20-04-2012, 20:39   #6
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Do you really think the current recession in Ireland and globally is a short term difficulty? It's just the tip of the iceberg.
Maybe the rate is declining but the population is still growing.
The population explosion we've had in the last 200 years is thanks to fossil fuels. It supports the infrastructure which makes a human population of 7 billion possible. No renewable energy source will have the potency of fossil fuels to maintain things as they are.
The entire global population as it is now will not survive the decline from fossil fuels to renewable energies.
The capitalist model we live on depends on constant expansion, infinite expansion where as the resources we depend on are finite.
You best start stocking up on 9 volt batteries and tinned food then.

P.S. For the love of God, don't forget a tin opener.

Last edited by NITransport; 20-04-2012 at 20:42.
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20-04-2012, 20:49   #7
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You best start stocking up on 9 volt batteries and tinned food then.

P.S. For the love of God, don't forget a tin opener.
Yeah, very good.
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20-04-2012, 21:10   #8
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The population explosion we've had in the last 200 years is thanks to fossil fuels. It supports the infrastructure which makes a human population of 7 billion possible. No renewable energy source will have the potency of fossil fuels to maintain things as they are.
It simply isn't true to say renewable energy cannot replace fossil fuels.

Remember we're talking on the big scale here over many decades.

As fossil fuel plants (and nuclear for that matter) come to the end of their life spans it will increasingly make economic sense to replace them with renewable investment. If you're looking at a 20 - 30 year investment and you see the cost of fossil fuels trending upward and renewable energy, storage and grid technology trending downward the renewables win and the case for them will only strengthen.

The only real questions are how much biodiversity are we going to lose and how much climate change will be locked in before the world completes the shift to sustainable practices.
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20-04-2012, 21:16   #9
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OP, your comment stinks of "Eugenics"

Do you think you are god and can suggest ideas to cull people left right and centre? shame on you.
Leave life to God (Or whoever or whatever it is that controls the universe).
Humans have NO right to kill or dictate to other humans.
NO RIGHT.
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20-04-2012, 23:46   #10
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OP, your comment stinks of "Eugenics"

Do you think you are god and can suggest ideas to cull people left right and centre? shame on you.
Leave life to God (Or whoever or whatever it is that controls the universe).
Humans have NO right to kill or dictate to other humans.
NO RIGHT.
Hmmm... not sure if you're trolling or just Christian.
I didn't suggest eugenics or killing anyone.
I'd like to see population control addressed in ways such as making people think responsibly about having children so that in future we can avoid a situation where people are struggling for survival.
Humans have no right to kill or dictate to other humans? Maybe not but it's something humans do a hell of a lot!
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20-04-2012, 23:52   #11
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Originally Posted by singathim View Post
OP, your comment stinks of "Eugenics"

Do you think you are god and can suggest ideas to cull people left right and centre? shame on you.
Leave life to God (Or whoever or whatever it is that controls the universe).
Humans have NO right to kill or dictate to other humans.
NO RIGHT.
Are we about to have a lecture on the evils of contraception and family planning?
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21-04-2012, 16:43   #12
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The one thing we have to keep to the forefront is that every Westerner uses an order of magnitude (some two orders, the sort we celebrate in "celebrity", sport and business publications) of resources that your average Third Worlder uses, never mind the poorest of them. So the argument that Third World population growth is going to cause resource depletion is pretty much just plain wrong.

However, self-interest should govern Third World governments in respect of population control, since overpopulation causes them to rely on external sources of assistance which may or may not be forthcoming.

In the First World, population growth is tolerated via immigration (rather than celebrated) because the weird foreigners are basically the only way the Ponzi scheme that is First World Pension and Social Safety Net programmes can be paid for when there aren't enough locally born kids to support Boomers. I myself am an immigrant supporting the Canadian "Social Ponzi scheme" through my taxes
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21-04-2012, 16:46   #13
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The problem will sort itself out, whether via plague or war or education/management. It's a self-regulating system.

My money is on war over limited resources btw.

Last edited by srsly78; 21-04-2012 at 16:49.
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21-04-2012, 19:04   #14
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I've read before that the world population is expected to plateau around the 10bn mark.

At any rate, different countries have different priorities. France actively encourages people to have larger (3 children) families through its welfare system. China, famously, has its one-child policy. Japan is experiencing population decline (in part due to it being a relatively impenetrable country for potential immigrants) which has a lot of middle aged Japanese worried about money being available for pensions.

I think it's too much of a (relatively) local issue for any kind of world policy on population contol.
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21-04-2012, 21:38   #15
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The problem will sort itself out, whether via plague or war or education/management. It's a self-regulating system.

My money is on war over limited resources btw.
Oh it absolutely will sort itself out one way or another. But we either take care of it now and deal with population growth responsibly or we let nature take its course and that's going to be harsh for everybody. In 2050 I'll be a vulnerable old man. I'm hoping I'll be able to live comfortably by then and die a natural death rather than having to fight people for food and water.
Yes, it sounds crazy and drastic now but with the way things are going it's not going to end well.
Maybe I'm wrong. I really really do want to be wrong about this.
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