Children are bad for sustainability

Discussion in 'News from around the damp planet' started by sun burn, Jan 2, 2011.

  1. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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  2. Grahame

    Grahame Senior Member

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    That article just seems silly to me.

    If a good permaculturist has kids and raises them to create rather than consume I reckon the long term impacts could potentially lead to a reversal in the carbon problem. In contrast a high level consumer who has kids and raises them as consumers there is no doubt it will impact negatively.

    It's also a bit daft to attribute a child's future carbon footprint to the parent. I mean I'm all for coming up with solutions to overpopulation, but this one is just stoopid IMHO.
     
  3. milifestyle

    milifestyle New Member

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    Yeah... what he said... :)
     
  4. Fernando Pessoa

    Fernando Pessoa Junior Member

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    I am pretty sure I just wasted a good minute of my life that I will never get back.
    I would prefer that we just got rid of journalists who have nothing better to do than churn out polemic crap that sucks up space,we have a few of them contributing to the articles at PRI front page at the moment.
    Don't worry I am making a list and come the revolution,they will all be forming an orderly line in front of the compost pit;>)
    Best Wishes
    Fernando
    p.s would you please put a bullshit alert out so I don't have to read that sort of junk again.
    Sort of like a spoiler.
     
  5. pebble

    pebble Junior Member

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    I don't see the problem with the article. Someone is drawing attention to the fact that the US uses more than it creates and having children increases the problem exponentially.

    If we (Westerners) use 3x our footprint no matter what we do, how is that not also an issue for the coming generations?
     
  6. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    If you follow the logical conclusion of no one anywhere having any children.... Wow that's sustainable. No us in one generation. Bit silly really....
     
  7. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    Actually eco its not the rational behind the article at all. Perhaps people could read the link that was included - where they merely suggest people consider having one less child. But this quote below is pretty stunning as well. Reading the link should also get the journalist off the hook with fernando because she is merely reporting on a study.


    Its not about saying that our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint by other means is pointless, its suggesting that people have less children which I think is good thing.
     
  8. pebble

    pebble Junior Member

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    I think you are reacting to the thread title (which I agree is silly, sorry sun burn). But as sun burn says, that's not what the article is about.

    Personally I do think there is an imperative for many people to have no children at all. We live on a finite planet folks, where do you think the limit is in terms of how many people it can feed and shelter?
     
  9. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    Its a good article because it should get people talking about overpopulation again and making people think about ways to control it. Its good that people are encouraged to take personal responsibilty, rather than leaving it all up to the scientists and policy makers to fix and then blaming them when there are no results. Its also better than waiting for a major natural disaster to fix it. Its also good because it puts the problem in our own national back yard and not just in the back yard of poor people who normally take the brunt of blame for the population problem. The thing is , that overconsumption and overpopulation are entwined problems.
     
  10. aroideana

    aroideana Junior Member

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    I think you should get a licence\permit to breed . If you cannot afford to raise one , no permit .
     
  11. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    While I have no argument that there needs to be a limit on population growth it don't think it solves the problem as quickly as we need it to. The problem is overconsumption - and the countries that consume the most are the ones with the lowest birth rate. Australia's birth rate is about 1.7 babies per woman - so we are currently not even replacing ourselves. So the growth in the Aussie population is from migration - as it has been for most of our history. The countries that have the high birth rates have such low consumption rates that their 8 kids are less of an impact on the world than 1/2 of an American or Australian child. Living a life of low consumption is a much more effective solution than giving up sex!
    We HAVE the solution to overpopulation. We don't need fancy new technology. Most women in the world will tell you that they don't want big families. Getting the contraception to the users is entirely achievable. What is missing is the political will to do so. When women actually achieve political parity with men then we'll have universal access to contraception. But we have a such a long history of male dominated society maintaining the balance of power by controlling women's bodies and then blaming women for the consequences, that it isn't changing very quickly.
     
  12. springtide

    springtide Junior Member

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    Hmmm, maybe they should put a carbon tax on all human controlled life forms - childeren, dogs, cats, goldfish, etc as they all have an impact. Then the government and big business could give themselves exemptions as they are needed to maintain the tax. Then we should tax athletes - alot, they do breathe way too much and they spend a lot of time talking on TV which just seems such a waste. Then we should give more exemptions to countries like Bangladesh and other third world nations where infant mortality is very high and many of the childeren simply are not permitted to have a carbon foot print, exemptions for aids and cancer victims - they are doing their bit to lower CO2 also. Then there should be some penalties, starting with the elderly people just seem to be enjoying their older years for a lot longer these days and driving motorhomes from one side to the country, up and down and back again - i mean when will it end. And then there the polliticians jet setting backwards and forwards to environmental conferences around the world and all that talking that does not get anywhere, I think we should do away with elections all together - the policies are so similar nowdays and the emissions from the campaigns and everyone travelling to the ballot box is just not worth it to express a few opininions, and then there are the views expressed by a few individuals in a not too well recognised university doing a dramatic study with a stupid title, reams of paper and miles of travel just to get their names in the paper so that their department does not get dissolved next fiscal year - does not seem worth it either.
     
  13. Fernando Pessoa

    Fernando Pessoa Junior Member

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    It really is time for an all out assault on,the developing world.
    Quite frankly I am sick of living with the guilt of my consumerist lifestyle.
    I would like for the developed world to declare a war against poverty.
    If you are poor then you should die.
    We can then reclaim their lands and extract the valuable resources they hold.I don't think I can't face slow depopulation of the third world,so I would prefer that we just organised a clean clinical strike on these people.
    I think they would appreciate it too,no more watching their children die slowly,no more famines no more need for these tiresome appeals to help impoverished nations.
    We could just get back to talking about plants and really have a good shot at sustainability.
    I mean what is the point of all this sophisticated military hardware if we are not going to use it?
    Think of the compost we could make,mass graves with a good carbon to nitrogen ratio.
    We could call these pits (terror preta),just think about the potential carbon sinks and resulting carbon markets.
    It's going to happen these soft killing fields,so why don't we just accept the fact kill the weak and move on.
    We are past the point of no return and any other pathway than the one I am suggesting just condemns the poorest of the poor to a life of grim grinding existence.
    I am at the low end of the scale as far as western consumerism is concerned but I still consume way more than the earth can sustain I cannot see any other way even in a closed loop system that I can live to a 1:1 basis and be completely sustainable.
    Something has to give.
    Best Wishes
    Fernando Pessimist.
     
  14. Michaelangelica

    Michaelangelica Junior Member

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    Children are the reason for sustainability.

    We may be winning the war against Third World poverty (slowly).
    There is some good news about. I will try and find it

    How many gave $25 to Kiva at Christmas?
    If we were billionaires we would give a million or two.
    But a million of us could lend $25.
     
  15. springtide

    springtide Junior Member

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    I guess the article really was a bit pointless in that it is preaching to western society where we have a birth rate that is less than replacement and the people who do have lots of childeren in the third world have more important things to do than read studies with bad titles. Perhaps what they should have done is a study into re inventing agriculture in the not so well off countries to feed them selves, export some to us to help our failing agriculture, pay off their foreign debt so big business is happy, develop export markets in first world countries with a military capability so they will protect their farmers and towns people from fascist reigemes. develop some processing facilities in the cities to promote jobs, low carbon rail and sea transport... feed the world, remove world poverty. This model would have been a lot more useful for a bunch of uni students.
    I guess it wouldn't grab the headlines like a guilt trip (agreed there FP) over one of the most amazing times of your life.
     
  16. Michaelangelica

    Michaelangelica Junior Member

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  17. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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  18. Grahame

    Grahame Senior Member

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    I think the article and the study itself miss the point altogether. They are still coming from the same level of consciousness that has created the problems it is seeking to fix. I don't think they GET IT at all.

    The population has exploded by almost one billion in the last 10 years! This sort of exponential rise is typical of an organism reaching it's peak. If you look at the news (or listen to the Jehovahs' at the door ;)) it is pretty clear that we are teetering on the brink. The only question is, can we manage the decent, or are we going to collapse.

    Population is tied to the cheap easy energy we have had for so long. You can't maintain these populations with out it. Thus the meaning of the word unsustainable. The carbon footprint is almost irrelevant in this context, apart from the fact that it is inseparable for the wasteful use of cheap energy. The article is about a symptom, not the root problem. You can keep taking panadol for a sore wrist, but unless you stop overusing it you are just masking the real problem and you will never fix it!

    It's no mistake that so much of the world population is medicating itself.
     
  19. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    It doesn't matter to me that we are not replacing ourselves. I know it means we will be poorer for it but i think less wealth will reduce consumption.
     
  20. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    The problem with the article is it allows people to be complacent. "Oh well - I don't have kids, or I only had one so I'm OK Jack. I can buy that Hummer and the big plasma because I'm doing my bit for the environment."
     

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