Environmentalists giving away Earth Day condoms to combat overpopulation

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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In honor of Earth Day this year, groups are giving out 44,000 “Endangered Species Condoms.”

The environmentally friendly condoms will be distributed in an effort to refocus the green holiday back to why it was started: to campaign against “runaway human population growth and overconsumption.”

“April 22 is the 44th Earth Day, and this year we want to bring the holiday’s focus back to its origins: runaway human population growth and overconsumption, the root causes of our most pressing environmental crises,” the Center for Biological Diversity wrote in a pitch to its supporters.

“We need people across the country to help distribute 44,000 Endangered Species Condoms in time for Earth Day,” the Center continued. “These colorful, fun condom packages feature six species threatened by our growing human population — already more than 7 billion — along with talking points to help get the conversation started.”

Environmentalists have been increasingly turning back to arguments that the world is on its way to having too many people to sustain life. Californians for Population Stabilization attempted to make overpopulation the central theme of Earth Day 2013, saying that rapid population growth imperils biodiversity and causes habitat loss.

“The consequences of that growth are all around us—loss of open space, air and water pollution, traffic congestion, and never-ending sprawl,” said Jo Wideman, executive director of Californians for Population Stabilization. “Habitat loss due to population growth is the greatest threat to wildlife.”

Even Al Gore has said that “fertility management” was the key to sustainable development in the third world — an important component of the fight against global warming.

David Brower, a former executive director of the Sierra Club who also sat on the groups board as recently as 2000, once said, “Overpopulation is perhaps the biggest problem facing us, and immigration… has to be addressed.”

The emphasis on “fertility management” and population control comes as more and more evidence casts doubt upon the validity of the theory of man-made global warming. Global temperatures have been flat for the last 17 years or so and so-called “extreme weather” events have not been on the rise, despite environmentalist rhetoric.

The public has also become more skeptical that global warming will be catastrophic. A recent Gallup poll found that 42 percent of Americans say the seriousness of global warming is “generally exaggerated” by the media, compared to 33 percent who say its “generally underestimated.”

And while 57 percent of Americans believe that global warming is caused by humans, that’s fewer than the 61 percent that believed so in 2007. This is on top of the fact that no major global warming bill has been able to pass Congress since the failed attempt to pass cap-and-trade in 2009 and 2010.

Today the world’s populations is at about 7 billion, nearly double what it was in 1970 when the first Earth Day was celebrated. According to the United Nations, the world’s population will reach about 10 billion by 2050.

Around the time of the first Earth Day, scientists Paul Ehrlich and John Holdren, now the White House science czar, worried that the world’s population would outstrip technology and food production capabilities. Ehrlich and Brower wrote the book “The Population Bomb,” which warned of mass starvation in the 1970s and 1980s due to overpopulation. The book advocated for population control to remedy the future threat.

The book’s dire predictions failed to materialize. The world’s population continued to grow and new technologies enabled farmers to realize huge increases in food production. And as poor countries like China and India began to develop, they too began to bring people out of poverty and chronic hunger.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that one-eighth of the world’s population suffered from chronic undernourishment in 2010-2012. The number of hungry people in the world declined by 132 million between 1990-92 and 2010-12 — from 18.6 percent to 12.5 percent of the world’s population.

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