Opinion: A declining world population isn’t a looming catastrophe. It could actually bring some good.

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Opinion: A declining world population isn’t a looming catastrophe. It could actually bring some good.

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Great piece by Kim Stanley Robinson (my favourite author).

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Opinion: A declining world population isn’t a looming catastrophe. It could actually bring some good.

June 7, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. GMT+1

Thanks to scientific advances in medicine and public health, humanity’s population shot from 2.5 billion in 1950 to 7.7 billion today. People on average are staying healthier and living longer. Over the past six months, the United States has seen the inauguration of the oldest president ever, a Super Bowl victory by the oldest quarterback ever and a major golf title captured by the oldest winner ever.

I myself am like a lot of older people: I would have died some years back without modern medicine, but thanks to medical interventions I’m currently in good health.

Now, though, this steep population increase is not only slowing, demographers say, it may well start reversing over the coming decades as fertility rates around the world decline. On Monday, news came that China — apparently frightened by the portents — is raising its family-size limit, allowing women to bear three children instead of two.

President Xi Jinping isn’t the only one fretting. The vision of a dwindling global population is widely depicted as a looming catastrophe.

“The world is ill-prepared for the global crash in children being born which is set to have a ‘jaw-dropping’ impact on societies,” the BBC reported last summer. This media staple got a boost a couple of weeks ago from a New York Times article headlined “Long Slide Looms for World Population, With Sweeping Ramifications.” While trying to find some bright spots (lower demand on resources!), the article mostly focused on the “hard to fathom” negative implications.

I’d prefer to fathom the good stuff.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions ... n-problem/
"Take it easy, nothing matters in the end."
– William Shatner
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