Monday, November 7, 2011

Seven Billion, and the One-percenters are Counting on Collapse, Oddly enough

After three children, Filipino mother Gina Judilla tried to induce abortion, but failed. She can't get birth control. (IHT)

Cross-posted with permission from the Guttmacher Institute.

This fall, world population will reach 7 billion people at a time of accelerated environmental disruption. This article is part of a series commissioned by RH Reality Check to examine the causes and consequences of population and environmental change from various perspectives and the policies and actions needed to both avoid and mitigate the inevitable impacts of these changes.

Women  & BC --

According to the United Nations, the world’s population will reach seven billion later this year and, if current trends continue, will rise to more than nine billion by the middle of this century.1 This new population milestone—and the projection—prompt renewed debates about the balance between population size and consumption of natural resources, about age structure and political stability, and about the consequences of rapid population growth rates for poor countries’ ability to develop economically.

These relationships and others pertaining to population size and the rate of population growth are complex and their implications often controversial. To a large extent, however, these macro-level dilemmas reflect a micro-level problem about which there is a universal consensus and where the solution is relatively straightforward. Millions of women and couples, especially in the developing world, are still unable to control for themselves the timing, spacing and total number of their children. Recognition of this fact provides a road map for moving forward that can address the needs of the people and the planet at the same time.

That path forward must include a central focus on increasing access and eliminating barriers to voluntary contraceptive services. Responding directly to individual people’s needs and desires to determine for themselves whether and when to have a child will contribute significantly toward their ability to lead healthier, more productive lives. In turn, these benefits for individuals and families accrue to their communities and to society at large. Ultimately, the impact would be felt at the global level. Meeting the stated desires of all women around the world to space or limit births would result in the world’s population peaking within the next few decades—and then actually starting to decline.

All of the articles in this series can be found here.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Stoppping Science in its Tracks -- Presidential Hopefuls Lack Skills to Understand Science, Sustainability

While presidential hopefuls from the Rotten Tomatoes leagues -- Republican candidates, Tea Bag Party, Cain, Koch-supported anything -- take shots at EPA, anything tied to environmental sustainability, and science in general, and the record profits of Exxon and other energy companies splash on the news headlines, we have real issues to fight onward for.

Arctic --

Dear Friend,
Right now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is asking for your input on a plan for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that, for the first time, could recommend Wilderness protection for the Arctic Refuge's Coastal Plain — the Refuge's biological epicenter that has been in Big Oil's sights for decades.  This plan will guide how the Arctic Refuge will be managed for the next 15 years or more.

A Wilderness recommendation could protect this unparalleled area and the abundant wildlife that depends on it— including polar bears, musk oxen, caribou, and millions of birds from around the globe. But to make sure the final version of the Fish and Wildlife Service's plan includes a Wilderness recommendation,  we must demonstrate overwhelming support for protecting the Refuge's Coastal Plain. If we speak with a loud and united voice, we'll be sending a strong message that the Fish and Wildlife Service can't ignore.

Will you speak up for the Arctic Refuge? Please sign our letter to Secretary Salazar and the Fish and Wildlife Service.

There are some places in this country that define what it means to be American — the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeastern Alaska is one of those places. For the past 50 years our country has remained committed to protecting one of our last wild places.  Some places are just too extraordinary to drill, and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is one of them.

This year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will make some big decisions about the future of the Arctic Refuge. If we all speak out, we can make sure that those decisions offer the critical Coastal Plain the strongest possible protections from Big Oil and harmful development.

Please sign our letter to Secretary Salazar and the Fish and Wildlife Service, and speak out for this national treasure.

Thanks for all you do,

Cindy Shogan
Executive Director
Alaska Wilderness League
Western Australia --

This blog is brought to you by

This blog is brought to you by
Paul Haeder

Fuse Washington

Fuse Washington