European Population Alliance

Issues

Adoption: You can help others and avoid increasing our population by adopting or fostering.

Ageing: The problems of an ageing population are vastly less serious than those of an ever-growing one. The idea of ever more old people needing ever more young people, who will grow old in turn and need ever more, etc. is an ecological pyramid scheme in which the next generation bears the cost of the current one. Like all other pyramid schemes, it is unsustainable.

Polar Bear

Biodiversity Loss: One of the principal causes of biodiversity loss is the growth in human numbers.

Climate Change: We believe that modern human activity, using "the industrial leverage" provided by burning carbon dioxide-emiting fossil fuels, is a major cause of accelerating climate change. When considering the per capita "carbon footprint" of any country, it is logical to consider the increasing "number of feet" involved. Hence climate change should stand alongside the many other effects that result from overpopulation, such as resource depletion, destruction of ecosystems, loss of bio-diversity and environmental degradation.

Diversion: We do not accept that concern regarding population size is a diversion from other aspects of overconsumption such as business practices, government priorities, inequality and lifestyles; rather we believe that it should be addressed alongside these other issues.

Economic Growth: It is a fallacy that many young workers are needed to sustain economic growth. Rather, growing numbers create the need for economic growth to provide jobs.

Ehrlich: Ehrlich's predictions in 1968 of widespread famine within twenty years were overtaken by the "green revolution" which achieved greater agricultural productivity as a result of improved crop varieties and farming practices. By 2050, the world population is expected to be 2.5 times greater; we do not foresee further advances in agricultural productivity comparable to the "green revolution" or sufficient to meet the projected additional demand. The impact on agriculture of climate change as well as the cultivation of crops for biofuels could well lead to food shortages in the future.

Eugenics: We are only concerned with the sustainability aspect of human numbers and completely reject any association with eugenics, which is the study and practice of selective breeding applied to humans, with the aim of improving the species.

Family planning: Rights-based family planning leading to smaller families is one of the most effective means of addressing humanity's unsustainable impact on the planet. It is also essential to improving women's health and human rights.

Large Families: It is less true now than historically that large families are needed to work farms or provide a secure old age. Urbanisation and land shortages mean that having many children is increasingly a liability rather than an asset.

Large Crowd of People

Malthusianism: Malthus's predictions predated the industrial revolution. By the year 2050, the world population will be eight times that of his time; we do not at all foresee a comparable technological leap forward to address the resource issues we face now in the 21st Century.

Migration: There have been migrations throughout history. Fundamental to most of them has been the pressure of human numbers. In a crowded world, migration is not a solution to the problems we face.

Misanthropy: Far from disliking people, our concern is for a sustainable future for all, and is motivated by philanthropy.

Misogyny: On the contrary, we support the empowerment of women, both on a moral basis in terms of granting women their basic human rights, of which coercive pregnancy is a grave abuse. Empowered and educated women almost invariably choose to have smaller families.

Personal Consumption: We encourage individuals to contribute to a sustainable future by reducing their consumption. This can include travelling less, reducing energy use and consuming less meat and fewer dairy products.

Population Downsizing: We believe the negative consequences ascribed to population reduction have been overstated. We are convinced that the economic consequences are both entirely manageable and less serious than the disastrous impact of continued indefinite economic and population growth in a finite world of dwindling resources.

Huts

Poverty: Poverty is both a consequence and cause of high birth rates. Both must be addressed to make progress. Indefinite growth being physically impossible, we know populations must ultimately stop growing, either sooner, humanely, by fewer births or later, brutally, by more deaths.

Religion: The attitude of religious authorities towards family planning differs widely, both between and within religions. Countries with highly observant populations of multiple religions such as Bangladesh, Indonesia, Iran, Italy and Spain have successfully reduced their birth rate. The doctrines of the Catholic Church and of some conservative Islamic scholars prohibiting the use of modern contraception cause immense suffering to women.

Reproductive Health: Reproductive health is indivisible. All elements, including maternal health, infant survival, disease prevention and contraception, should be addressed.

Resource Depletion: Depletion of resources, including oil, soil and fresh water, is a fundamental issue and one caused to a very large extent by population growth.

Rights-Based: We believe that family planning should be rights-based, with the human rights of users being fully respected.

Single Children: Studies have shown that single children are not maladjusted or disadvantaged in later life.

Sustainability: According to the World Wildlife Fund / Global Footprint Network Living Planet Report, we are collectively consuming the renewable resources of 1.5 Earths. In the future, a growing population will mean that an increasing number of people will find it impossible to achieve a decent quality of life.

Universality: Sustainability is in the interest of all and we are not addressing or focusing on any particular group.

Women's Rights: Gender equality and reproductive health are mutually supportive. Each makes the other more possible. We fully support measures to improve women's participation in all levels and areas of society.

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