Earth to Paul Ehrlich: UN Revises Population Projection Downward

By Alex Berezow, PhD — Jun 20, 2019
We aren't the sort of organization that likes to say "We told you so." (Okay, that was a lie. We totally are.) Secular doomsday prophet Paul Ehrlich has been proven wrong (again), and ACSH has been proven correct (again).
Credit: Meme Generator

We aren't the sort of organization that likes to say, "We told you so." Okay, that was a lie. We totally are.

For reasons that we do not understand, the topic of world population makes some people foam at the mouth. Largely due to a book called The Population Bomb written by the thoroughly discredited (and strangely unrepentant) secular doomsday prophet Paul Ehrlich, there is a widespread belief that the world is overpopulated. It is not. Saying that, however, will get you called a lot of really bad names.

But facts don't care about feelings. Demographers routinely conduct computer simulations of the world population, and they do not predict runaway population growth. The broad consensus is that population will peak sometime during the 22nd Century and then decline.

It's not just that the concept of overpopulation is factually incorrect. It also encourages a misanthropic view of other (mostly black and brown) people in the developing world. If you think that humans are just a bunch of cockroaches, that doesn't encourage you to be helpful toward those in need. It's a toxic mindset.

It's also a worldview that causes people to say stupid things and waste money on non-existent problems, such as the ridiculous claim that the world will run out of food by 2027. Jeff Bezos wants to build space colonies for a trillion people, despite that we won't need them because there will never be a trillion of us.

On top of all that, some scholars who have studied the issue believe that world population will start shrinking this century, not next century. ACSH published an article by two such writers, Darrell Bricker and John Ibbitson, in February of this year. They argued, "We do not face the challenge of a population bomb but of a population bust—a relentless, generation-after-generation culling of the human herd. Nothing like this has ever happened before."

They may very well be right.

United Nations Revises Its Population Projection Downward

As reported in The Economist, the UN has revised its latest population projection downward. Specifically, it lowered its projection for 2050 by 37 million people (to 9.7 billion) and for 2100 by 309 million people (to 10.9 billion). Why? Because "[b]irth rates are falling faster than expected in some developing countries." That's precisely the argument made by Mr. Bricker and Mr. Ibbitson.

And it's why we feel completely justified in saying:


Alex Berezow, PhD

Former Vice President of Scientific Communications

Dr. Alex Berezow is a PhD microbiologist, science writer, and public speaker who specializes in the debunking of junk science for the American Council on Science and Health. He is also a member of the USA Today Board of Contributors and a featured speaker for The Insight Bureau. Formerly, he was the founding editor of RealClearScience.

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