Recently, one of my
ardent readers said, “Humans should not feel guilty about living on
Earth.…” He defended humanity’s overpopulation
running roughshod over the planet and the oceans. He defended that humans own
the right to reproduce themselves forever without end into eternity. He argued
that we can add another 20, 30 and 40 billion people to the planet without
He felt that our causing
the extinction of over 100 species daily cannot be our concern. He lacks any
moral compunction or sense of responsibility toward our fellow life-forms. He denied that human carbon footprint creates
climate destabilization. He advocates
for unlimited population growth. In
other words: he lacks the intellectual horsepower to understand his own
dilemma. Another way to put it: dumb as
a box of doorknobs.
hundred years ago, Alfred Whitehead in his “Adventures of Ideas”, made a
statement that spelled out a logical path for the advancement of the human
foundation of all understanding...is that no static maintenance of perfection
is possible. This axiom is rooted in the nature of life. Advance
or decay are the only choices offered humanity. The pure conservative is
fighting against the essence of the universe."
Whitehead said that
we must change our thinking to fit new realities. We must take Galileo’s new
understandings that the Earth no longer enjoys the universe revolving around
it, but in fact, our planet remains a speck in the black void of the
universe. This planet remains finite
with a finite carrying capacity. Humans,
to be sure, need to get a clue that they are not God’s gift to the world. In fact, Shim Schimmel, the renowned artist
said, “With creatures like human beings, even the stars aren’t safe.”
intelligent Americans surveyed recently, they were asked the question: Do
Americans think stabilizing population will help protect the environment?
Fifty-four percent believe stabilization will.
As Steve Kurtz said, “Nothing on Earth happens in a vacuum. It’s a closed
system that begins to buckle under the sheer weight of human demands.
Scientists are increasingly linking population growth and overconsumption to
our environmental challenges.”
With my six
continents of bicycle travel, I unequivocally understand and have seen
firsthand that human overpopulation accelerates as the single greatest and most
dangerous issue facing humanity and all life on this planet in the 21st
In just the past few months’ scientists have
found in America:
• The Colorado River system is under assault by a growing population, and
there are serious doubts it can meet the West’s demand for water in the coming
aquifer, the water supply for 19 million people, is experiencing saltwater
intrusion because of over-pumping.
• The United States
will lose 36 million acres of forest to urban sprawl by 2050.
• Sixty-six species
of coral should be classified as endangered because population and consumption
of resources are a driving factor in the threats they face.
• The Gunnison sage
grouse merits endangered-species protection in part because the human
population has doubled in its habitat and will double again in the next 20
• Florida panthers
experienced the second year in a row of record-breaking road kills deaths due
to increased traffic and development in panther habitat.
According to the Department of Interior, because of human encroachment, we
lose 2,500 plants and animals to extinction in North America every decade. That
number will accelerate as we race toward an added 138 million by 2050 and 625
million by the end of the century.
two hundred species.. .mostly of the large, slow-breeding variety.. are
becoming extinct here every day because more and more of the earth's carrying
capacity is systematically being converted into human carrying capacity. These
species are being burnt out, starved out, and squeezed out of existence.. .thanks
to technologies that most people, I'm afraid, think of as technologies of
peace. I hope it will not be too long before the technologies that support our
population explosion begin to be perceived as no less hazardous to the future
of life on this planet than the endless production of radioactive wastes.” Daniel Quinn
What’s going on
with our oceans defies and frightens even the “hardest” mentality: 100 million
sharks killed annually for the past 20 years.
Species extinction rates blowing off the charts. Acidification of the oceans causing many life
forms to go extinct including our reefs.
Plastic devastation like the Great Pacific Garbage Patch killing
millions of marine and avian creatures annually. Over 20,000 square mile dead
zones at the mouths of rivers around the world running raw sewage laden with
chemicals 24/7. The list multiplies as
Americans get it
and our leaders need to get it and we all need to understand that we cannot
stand around with our noses stuck to a TV set.
We need to participate in our future and the future of our children.
The poll asked: if mass extinctions of plants and animals were unavoidable
due to population growth, do we have a moral responsibility to address the
problem? Sixty percent said “Yes!”
me with Dave Chaffin, host of the Morning
at 650 AM, www.KGAB.com
, Cheyenne, Wyoming every
Monday 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m., as we discuss my latest commentaries on
immigration-environment. You may stream
the show on your computer. You may call in at: 1-888-503-6500.
Frosty Wooldridge has bicycled across six continents - from the Arctic to
the South Pole - as well as eight times across the USA, coast to coast and
border to border. In 2005, he bicycled from the Arctic Circle, Norway to
Athens, Greece. In 2012, he bicycled coast to coast across America. He presents “The Coming Population Crisis
facing America: what to do about it.” www.frostywooldridge.com
His latest book is: How to Live a Life of
Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, copies at 1 888
280 7715/ Motivational program: How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art
of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, click: www.HowToLiveALifeOfAdventure.com
Live well, laugh often, celebrate daily and enjoy the ride,
6 Continent world bicycle traveler