{"168995":{"id":"168995","parent":"0","time":"1581639690","url":"http:\/\/www.strategic-culture.org\/news\/2020\/02\/13\/we-should-be-wary-of-blaming-overpopulation-for-the-climate-crisis\/","category":"documentaires","title":"We Should Be Wary of Blaming Overpopulation for the Climate Crisis","image":"","hub":"newsnet","url-explicit":"we-should-be-wary-of-blaming-overpopulation-for-the-climate-crisis","admin":"newsnet","views":"20","priority":"2","length":"6804","lang":"en","content":"\u003Cp\u003E\u003Ci\u003EHeather ALBERRO\u003C\/i\u003E\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003E\u003Cb\u003ET\u003C\/b\u003Ehe annual \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.weforum.org\/events\/worldconomic-forum-annual-meeting-2020\/about\"\u003EWorld Economic Forum\u003C\/a\u003E in Davos brought together representatives from government and business to deliberate how to solve the worsening climate and ecological crisis. The meeting came just as \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.greenpeace.org\/international\/story\/28252\/fact-check-australias-unprecedented-fires-are-down-to-climate-change-not-arson\"\u003Edevastating bush fires\u003C\/a\u003E were abating in Australia. These fires are thought to have killed up to \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.vox.com\/future-perfect\/2020\/1\/6\/21051897\/australia-fires-billion-animals-deadtimate\"\u003Eone billion\u003C\/a\u003E animals and generated a new wave of \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.smh.com.au\/national\/australias-first-climate-change-refugees-20200103-p53okp.html\"\u003Eclimate refugees\u003C\/a\u003E. Yet, as with the \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/news.un.org\/en\/story\/2019\/12\/1053561\"\u003ECOP25\u003C\/a\u003E climate talks in Madrid, a sense of urgency, ambition and \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/edition.cnn.com\/2020\/01\/24\/business\/davos-2020-climate\/index.html\"\u003Econsensus\u003C\/a\u003E on what to do next were largely absent in Davos.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EBut an important debate did surface - that is, the question of who, or what, is to blame for the crisis. Famed primatologist Dr Jane Goodall \u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('popup_app__3_twit_call_1220696092532187136_tweet');\" class=\"txtx\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-tw\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E remarked\u003C\/a\u003E at the event that human population growth is responsible, and that most environmental problems wouldn't exist if our numbers were at the levels they were 500 years ago.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EThis might seem fairly innocuous, but its an argument that has grim implications and is based on a misreading of the underlying causes of the current crises. As these escalate, people must be prepared to challenge and reject the overpopulation argument.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\"twit track\" id=\"1220687357327892482\"\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\"nbp\"\u003E\u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('popup_app__3_twit_card_tomselliott_');\" class=\"popbt\" title=\"@tomselliott\"\u003ETom Elliott\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/twitter.com\/tomselliott\/status\/1220687357327892482\" class=\"small\" target=\"_blank\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-chain\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E 24\/01\/2020 13:38:39\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('popup_app__3_twit_call_1220659500010680320_thread');\" class=\"txtx\" title=\"parents\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-up\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('popup_app__3_twit_call_1220687357327892482_mnt');\" title=\"algore\u003Cbr \/\u003E\nGretaThunberg\u003Cbr \/\u003E\nalgore\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-oversight\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('popup_app__3_twit_call_1220687357327892482_rpl');\" title=\"answers\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-dialog\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Cspan id=\"fav1220687357327892482\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-heart\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E138\u003C\/span\u003E \u003Cspan id=\"rtw1220687357327892482\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-repost\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E32\u003C\/span\u003E \u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-users\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E 27314\/567 \u003Ca onclick=\"SaveJ('1220687357327892482_app___twit_recache_1220687357327892482');\"\u003E\u003Cspan class=\"philum ic-reload\"\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\"panel\"\u003E\u003Cdiv\u003EAt Davos #WEF2020, @algore starts screaming about the urgency of controlling the climate: “This is Thermopylae! .. This is the Battle of the Bulge! This is Dunkirk! This is 9\/11!\" \u003C\/div\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003Cp\u003E\u003Cb\u003EDangerous Distraction\u003C\/b\u003E\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EPaul Ehrlich's \"\u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.smithsonianmag.com\/innovation\/book-incited-worldwide-fear-overpopulation-180967499\"\u003EThe Population Bomb\"\u003C\/a\u003E and Donella Meadows' \"\u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.thenation.com\/article\/archive\/limits-growth-book-launched-movement\"\u003EThe Limits to Growth\"\u003C\/a\u003E in the late 1960s and early 1970s ignited concerns over the world's burgeoning human population, and its consequences for natural resources.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EThe idea that there were simply too many people being born - most of them in the developing world where population growth rates had started to take off - filtered into the arguments of \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/theconversation.com\/radicalnvironmentalists-are-fighting-climate-changeso-why-are-they-persecuted-107211\"\u003Eradical environmental groups\u003C\/a\u003E such as Earth First! Certain factions within the group became notorious for \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.latimes.com\/archives\/la-xpm-1989-03-27-vw-425story.html\"\u003Eremarks\u003C\/a\u003E about extreme hunger in regions with burgeoning populations such as Africa - which, though regrettable, could confer environmental benefits through a reduction in human numbers.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EIn reality, the global human population is not increasing exponentially, but is in fact \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/ourworldindata.org\/world-population-growth\"\u003Eslowing\u003C\/a\u003E and predicted to stabilise at around \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.un.org\/development\/desa\/en\/news\/population\/world-population-prospects-2019.html\"\u003E11 billion by 2100\u003C\/a\u003E. More importantly, focusing on human numbers obscures the true driver of many of our ecological woes. That is, the waste and inequality generated by modern capitalism and its focus on endless growth and profit accumulation.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EThe industrial revolution that first married economic growth with burning fossil fuels occurred in 18th-century Britain. The explosion of economic activity that marked the post-war period known as the\"\u003Ca href=\"http:\/\/www.igbp.net\/news\/pressreleases\/pressreleases\/planetarydashboardshowsgreataccelerationinhumanactivitysince1950.5.950c2fa1495db7081eb42.html\"\u003EGreat Acceleration\u003C\/a\u003E\" caused \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/theconversation.com\/blue-acceleration-our-dash-for-ocean-resources-mirrors-what-weve-already-done-to-the-land-130264\"\u003Eemissions to soar\u003C\/a\u003E, and it largely \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/journals.sagepub.com\/doi\/abs\/10.1177\/2053019614564785\"\u003Etook place in the Global North\u003C\/a\u003E. That's why richer countries such as the U.S. and U.K., which industrialized earlier, bear a bigger \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.vox.com\/energy-andnvironment\/2019\/4\/24\/18512804\/climate-change-unitedstates-chinamissions\"\u003Eburden of responsibility\u003C\/a\u003E for historical emissions.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EIn 2018 the planet's top emitters - North America and China - accounted for \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.statista.com\/statistics\/271748\/the-largestmitters-of-co2-in-the-world\"\u003Enearly half\u003C\/a\u003E of global CO2 emissions. In fact, the comparatively high rates of consumption in these regions generate so much more CO2 than their counterparts in low-income countries that an additional 3-to-4 billion people in the latter would \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/ourworldindata.org\/co2-by-income-region\"\u003Ehardly make a dent\u003C\/a\u003E on global emissions.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EThere's also the disproportionate impact of corporations to consider. It is suggested that just 20 fossil fuel companies have contributed to \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.theguardian.com\/environment\/2019\/oct\/09\/revealed-20-firms-third-carbonmissions\"\u003Eone-third\u003C\/a\u003E of all modern CO? emissions, despite industry executives knowing about the science of climate change \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.scientificamerican.com\/article\/exxon-knew-about-climate-change-almost-40-years-ago\"\u003Eas early as 1977\u003C\/a\u003E.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EInequalities in power, wealth and access to resources - not mere numbers - are key drivers of environmental degradation. The \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/theconversation.com\/rich-and-famous-lifestyles-are-damaging-thenvironment-in-untold-ways-71641\"\u003Econsumption\u003C\/a\u003E of the world's \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/ourworld.unu.edu\/en\/the-worlds-richest-people-alsomit-the-most-carbon\"\u003Ewealthiest 10 percent\u003C\/a\u003E produces up to 50 percent of the planet's consumption-based CO2 emissions, while the poorest half of humanity contributes only 10 percent. With a mere \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/www.oxfamamerica.org\/explore\/research-publications\/public-good-or-private-wealth\"\u003E26 billionaires\u003C\/a\u003E now in possession of more wealth than half the world, this trend is likely to continue.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EIssues of ecological and social justice cannot be separated from one another. Blaming human population growth - often in poorer regions - risks fuelling a racist backlash and displaces blame from the powerful industries that continue to pollute the atmosphere. Developing regions in Africa, Asia and Latin America often bear the brunt of climate and ecological catastrophes, despite having contributed the least to them.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003EThe problem is extreme inequality, the excessive consumption of the world's ultra-rich, and a system that prioritizes profits over social and ecological well-being. This is where where we should be devoting our attention.\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003E\u003Cb\u003Etheconversation\u003C\/b\u003E via \u003Ca href=\"https:\/\/consortiumnews.com\/2020\/02\/12\/weshould-be-wary-of-blaming-overpopulation-for-the-climate-crisis\"\u003Econsortiumnews.com\u003C\/a\u003E \u003Ci\u003EPhoto: Jane Goodall\u003C\/i\u003E\u003C\/p\u003E\u003Cp\u003E\u003Ca href=\"http:\/\/www.strategic-culture.org\/news\/2020\/02\/13\/we-should-be-wary-of-blaming-overpopulation-for-the-climate-crisis\/\"\u003Estrategic-culture.org\u003C\/a\u003E\u003C\/p\u003E"}}