Interesting opinion piece on the idea of equating births merely to carbon footprints. Definitely goes against all traditional Catholic/christian thought. It reminded me of this T-shirt I saw once that said:
“I heart the pitter patter of little carbon footprints!”
“When Mr. Murtaugh runs the numbers, he finds some alarming results. Take an American woman who checks all the green boxes: She recycles, installs energy efficient windows, cuts back how much she drives, and so on. Yet simply by having two children, Prof. Murtaugh reports, she will add nearly 40 times the amount of carbon dioxide emissions she had saved with those lifestyle changes. No wonder the Los Angeles Times Web site reports on this study under the title “Tie Your Tubes and Save the Planet?””
“Little more than a week ago, two British doctors writing in the British Medical Journal made the same point—this time about British babies. Each new birth in the U.K., they note, will end up resulting in 160 times more greenhouse gas emissions than a new birth in Ethiopia.
Their conclusion? British couples need to be told that having one less child “is the simplest and biggest gift anyone can make” to a habitable planet. Britain, they suggest, needs to promote an “environmental ethics” where having fewer children is “analogous to avoiding patio heaters and high carbon cars.””
I’ve read articles arguing these points before but I like this conclusion and am impressed it ran in the mainstream media :) There is hope!
“The real answer, of course, is to have a little more faith in the creative powers of human beings. Given the freedom to grow and innovate, surely the same people who have licked polio, sent a man to the moon, and given us a revolution in information will sooner or later come up with new technologies that will provide for our energy needs while being friendlier to the environment.
The task is not without its challenges. But we’re not likely to get far with a “science” that defines the problem as American babies.”