Even if we accept, as the San Jose Mercury News suggests, that oil, coal, natural gas, and uranium are abundant enough to keep us well supplied through the next century, consuming 1/5 of all the world's energy resources is not a good thing. Doubling the amount of highway capacity, as we will have to do to accommodate the next 100M people, traveling further to their jobs, is not a good thing. 12 lanes of Interstate 75 through the center of Atlanta (I just returned from a vacation in the South) is not a good thing. Endless processions of big-rig traffic on every Interstate, US highway, state road, and municipal street is not a good thing. More cars than drivers in the US, is not a good thing. 4-car garages are not a good thing. Being unable, as a practical matter, to escape the presence of humanity is not a good thing, and the impact of that on the environment cannot be understated. Reaching the tipping point of global climate change is not a go--no strike that--it's a very, Very, VERY bad thing, and another 100M isn't going to help.
The United States needs to work to stabilize it's population so that future generations--our descendants, immigrants, whoever--can enjoy lives as rich as the one's we enjoy. It's not enough to merely throw up our hands and say, "We have enough resources for the present. So what does it matter how much we use now?" Why divide the pie 400 million ways?
Which would be difficult to maintain under the tuberculosis of capitalism.
Nothing's for certain
It could always go wrong
Come in when it's raining
Go on out when it's gone
We could have us a high time
living the good life
Well I know
I had one and I was done. So I probably don't have any room to speak about breeding.
I had that same stunned reaction, but the ensuing decades are making it clear life would be much easier with a lot less human imprint. Question is who get to be in the 10% (or whatever % is deemed optimal)? Too Dr. Strangelove? Well, stabilization MAY work in a country like ours that still has much open space & resources.
My parents ea came from large families & had 4 children. My brother & I chose not to have any. Then my 2 sisters had *7* between them. So much for zero-sum net gain! ~~ D.K.
SA, your observations about adoption are interesting. Before deciding not to have (raise) any children, the Frogette and I considered going the adoption route. I, for one, have never had much attachement to a child of mine necessarily being my biological offspring.
D.K., ACC is probably correct, though I tend to think that a world population about half of what we have now would reduce our impact to a sustainable level. Of course as we speed toward the 8B mark, 3B seems unreachable...that is...without a cataclysm.
Kvatch, do you know the Highway 12 interchange in Santa Rosa. This thing is a total dinosaur that needed help when I was a kid in the 70s. Nothing has been done to it, and the traffic is a nightmare. Sonoma County doesn't have the funds to do the improvement, and honestly, there isn't a whole lot of room there to do much even if there was money for it.
And even if they could do an improvement, for the 2 years it would take, that place would be a total nightmare.
For me, this is typical of the United States over the last couple of decades. A lack of investment in crucial infrastructure is going to come home to roost soon. I was shocked at the level of disrepair on the 101 corridor. Marin is great, but Sonoma county is hurting.
I can't imagine that place with another 50% population growth over the next 30 years. Insane.
But, then again, think about Shanghai. They manage.
the way we-all are poisioning ourselves with delpated urauium and viruses like aids
we will wittle outselves down to 10% of the population is no time
my guess would be two generations
on another note:
some say that the downfall of our population will be infertility...we will loose the inability to reproduce naturally
AZG, like I said cataclysm is gonna get us in the end, but you're right on the infertility issue--might get us first.
TFWY, sure looks that way, doesn't it? Take all the 'McMansions', for example.
Mary, he's certainly talking the big talk on immigration, but so far much of our growth still comes from immigration, but lest I be tagged as 'anti-immigration', I'm really not. I think that immigration keeps this country vital.
Now, while this works on a certain level, as long as nobody saves those baby girls (If all you end up with is a country full of baby boys and no females... eventually the population IS going to reduce), It's just really NOT an answer I'm prepared to live with.
Especially since my niece was one of those baby girls left in a rice paddy in China.
Practically speaking with immigration rates where they are currently, we'd have to voluntarily reach 1 child per family (actually slightly less) pretty quickly to achieve zero growth.
Sorry...didn't pick up on the reference. Read a recent article that stated that the Iraqi lives lost is in the neighborhood of 600,000--tragic.
Sooner than later our federal government is going to have to adopt the one child policy.
As a side note I am deliberately child free, I have done my civic duty for AZ, the USA, and ultimately, the whole planet Earth.