Comment: Population Growth Takes a Toll on the Planet
Mr. Patrick McLaren, Ph.D, P.Geo., wrote the following opinion article, published in the oldest daily newspaper in Western Canada, The Times Colonist. McLaren has worked closely with the Geological Survey of Canada and the University of Cambridge. He is the author of more than 30 scientific papers, and is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists.
Paul Summerville and Rowan Porta (Making the case for a more-welcoming Canada, Dec. 30, 2012) make the case that declining populations in developed countries represent a “dangerous” demographic shift that threatens their economies.
According to them, “a growing population has been a key factor in the rise of economic and political power,” the message being that the declining population in Canada is tantamount to our economic doom. Admittedly, their discussion takes a refreshingly humane view of how changes to Canada’s immigration policies might help alleviate the coming fall, but it is clear that they also favour political management to encourage our baby-making potential.
Such thinking, unsurprisingly coming from a banking/economist mentality, perpetuates the present and ludicrous paradigm of the “goodness of growth,” and that “business as usual” will presumably continue indefinitely.
This short-sightedness (and perhaps the self-interest of our planetary corporate mindset) comes, terrifyingly, from the academia housed in our university’s school of business.
Their conclusions are based entirely on at least two hidden and erroneous assumptions: one, that economic growth is totally necessary for our comfortable existence on this Earth of ours; and two, that any problems resulting from our declining resources will yield to human ingenuity induced by the pressures of the free-market economy. Both are fallacious.
To read the full article, please click here: http://www.timescolonist.com/opinion/op-ed/comment-population-growth-takes-a-toll-on-the-planet-1.38615