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Tech billionaire Elon Musk, who has just been named TIME’s person of the year, has once again urged people to have more babies, claiming that “population collapse” is the biggest threat facing humanity. Population Matters Communications Manager Olivia Nater explains why this statement is absurd and dangerous.
From 3-10 September, Population Matters attended the World Conservation Congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Marseille. Postponed from last year due to COVID-19, the Congress brought together a range of stakeholders, including governments, NGOs, scientists, business, representatives of indigenous people and the public, to discuss the state of nature and how it can be protected. Senior Campaigner Andrew Howard reports how PM made its presence felt.
A comprehensive new assessment of the conservation status of all trees reveals that 30-60% of species are at risk of extinction, mainly due to habitat destruction for agriculture.
A recent study shows the continued conversion of land to agriculture to feed growing populations in Europe will have devastating impacts on key species including wild bees, plants and earthworms. While this damage can be reduced by selecting less biodiverse areas and incorporating sustainable farming practices, limiting additional population growth is the only long-term solution for feeding everyone without destroying ever more nature.
Updates to two landmark environmental studies were published in recent weeks: one examines the accuracy of the Club of Rome’s predictions in their bestselling 1972 book ‘Limits to Growth’, the other is a reiteration of the 2019 ‘Scientists’ Warning of a Climate Emergency’. Needless to say, neither update offers good news – we must act fast to avert disaster.
Today is Earth Overshoot Day, the date on which humanity has used up all the natural resources the Earth can regenerate within a year. Despite urgent calls to avoid a return to our destructive pre-pandemic status quo, we are still hurtling in the wrong direction. It is high time for those in power to confront the uncomfortable truth, explains Population Matters' Senior Communications Officer, Olivia Nater.
We’ve been committed to raising the profile of population and our collective impact on Earth since 24 July 1991, and though a cynic might consider it counter-intuitive for us to celebrate, that cynic would be ignorant of our unerring dedication to help create a better world for people everywhere, and the positive difference we are making. Robin Maynard reflects on Population Matters' work on our 30th birthday.
Last week, the UN Convention on Biological Diversity published the first draft of its new plan to combat global biodiversity loss. Population Matters Senior Campaigner Andrew Howard examines whether population issues are sufficiently dealt with.
An influential committee in the UK Parliament has called on the Government to do more to address population and overconsumption as drivers of biodiversity loss. Its comments, in a highly critical report on the UK Government’s action so far, reflect and refer directly to evidence submitted by Population Matters to its enquiry.
Ever more people are adopting plant-based diets for the planet, which leads many to believe that our consumption of animal products must be decreasing. Sadly, the opposite is true, with demand for meat and dairy continuing to shoot upwards due to a rapidly expanding middle class. Medical doctor and environmental filmmaker Sofia Pineda Ochoa explains why all vegans should also care about our unsustainable population growth.
If we’ve learnt anything from the devastating impact of COVID-19, it’s that life will never be quite the same again, which, according to conservationists Chris Packham and Megan McCubbin, opens up a whole world of opportunity – if we’re brave enough to stand up for change. Here, they share their thoughts on what needs to be done, right here, right now...
Everyone is aware of the climate crisis but not many people know there is another, equally serious environmental crisis: the sixth mass extinction. Renowned ecologist and conservationist Dr Gerardo Ceballos explains this alarmingly rapid erosion of biodiversity and why the survival of our own species depends on whether we manage to halt it.
High-profile Population Matters supporters including Chris Packham, Gordon Buchanan and Prof William Ripple are among those who have signed a letter to major environmental groups calling on them to take action on population.
To celebrate Earth Day in Population Matters’ 30th anniversary year, activist Stella Wright from our London group asks our President and veteran campaigner, Jonathon Porritt, some searching questions about the population issue and the future.
World Wildlife Day, falling on March 3rd every year, is a UN initiative that aims to celebrate wild species and raise awareness of their plight. This year’s theme, ‘Forests and Livelihoods: Sustaining People and Planet’, showcases humanity’s dependence on healthy forest ecosystems. Our Senior Communications Officer, Olivia Nater, examines the critical state of global forests and lists five actions we can take to help protect them and their inhabitants.
A major new analysis highlights how current food production and consumption patterns are driving biodiversity loss, and proposes three key actions to turn the tide and create a healthier future: a shift towards more plant-based diets, setting aside more land as protected areas, and adopting more sustainable farming methods.
On 4 February 2021, Population Matters held a live-screening of the population segment of the important new documentary Endgame 2050, followed by a panel discussion with the film-maker Sofia Pineda Ochoa, reproductive health expert Alisha Graves, and our esteemed Patrons Professor Paul Ehrlich and Leilani Münter.
Our economic and financial system is driving biodiversity loss and requires massive changes, according to a major new report by economist and Population Matters patron, Prof Sir Partha Dasgupta. Addressing population growth through much greater support for family planning is one of the key solutions proposed by the report.
An important new study warns that the world is failing to grasp the gravity of our environmental crises, and that without urgent action on the underlying causes, population and consumption growth, we face catastrophic mass extinction, climate disruption, and human suffering.
As 2020 draws to a close, humanity is reflecting on a particularly difficult year. The slow but sure roll-out of COVID-19 vaccination programmes presents a light at the end of the tunnel, yet new pandemics are just around the corner unless we confront our broken relationship with nature. Population Matters Senior Communications Officer, Olivia Nater, reviews the evidence.