Network for the Environment and Social (Human) Security

Negative Birth Rate

Posted by on Jun 23, 2011 in Ecology | 2 comments

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Global society will in the near future be confronted with three major problems.

The first problem. The present world population, seven billion, is already an acute problem. And it will be an even bigger problem as soon as nine billion people will inhabit the earth. This is estimated to happen merely 40 years from now, around the middle of the century!

The second problem. The shadows of the global debts are looming on the horizon and will have to be redeemed eventually. We all know how volatile the economic status quo is. To the follower of daily news it is nothing new, that the economis of the world are always in some sort of crisis. The tool to get out of the crisis, so it seems, is to take up more loans on a national and international level. The economy is for the meanwhile getting along on crutches, while public debts have grown astronomically!

Some day the price will have to be paid. We, who live now, have a privileged live, we can still make new debts and we must not pay them back. We simply shift the problem, one amongst many, to the following generations. Our children will be confronted with a world population on the peak! From this point world population must decline. One way or another. The negative birth rate is the solution to the number of people competing for the limited space. The space on earth is definite, it obviously can’t grow. Therefore humanity must grow smaller.

World population will have to be restricted. One of the soft methods to reach that objective is to grant all the citizens of the world a certain affluence and hope that the DEP, the Demographic- Economic Paradox (1.) will meet it’s own claim and a negative birth rate will be felt all over the world. The other way to reduce world population will be the Chinese way – one child per couple! Another scenario could be the Climate Change. If this should occure many hundreds of million people might die because of it.

At some point in history world population will be reduced. Still the problem prevails, how is economic growth possible with less people?

Let’s take for instance the pension funds, which needs a certain amount of people to work in order to pay for the retired ones. This is called the Generation Contract (2). One generation takes care of the other.

Already some countries, as Germany (3), have a negative birth rate and in order to balance it the government of Germany contemplates to allow a certain amount of foreign workers to fill the void in the pension plan. This might be a solution for affluent societies to let workers from poor countries immigrate. But on a global level this is not possible, since the only ecological solution is a negative birth rate on a global level. This is a question ignored by politics, business and the academia.

And we and our children are left in the dark how to solve the problem!

For further reading:

1. Demographic-Economic Paradox

2. Generation Contract

3. Germany

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