A colleague who happens to be a professor in New South Wales shared this video with me. I am tempted to just recapture the presented content here, but I feel everyone should just watch it for full impact. I intentionally used a cover image that is counter to the narrative. The challenge is not overpopulation. Rather, it’s the opposite. Find out why.
I’ve cued the video beyond the introduction—feel free to rewind for context, but there is no material content to be missed—, and there are a couple of minutes of additional material at the end, making the content closer to 50 minutes (48.5) than an hour.
Some highlights follow:
Geometric growth commenced after the Black Plague was driven by the discovery of how to harness fossil fuel. As with Malthusian predictions, The Population Bomb missed the mark—but not for all of the reasons you might be thinking.
Population growth rates were already on the decline when The Population Bomb was published in 1968. This trend was a result of the fertility trend that became precipitous circa 1963.
Though birth rates may seem to be increasing, this is merely optics as this is a legacy of positive population momentum stemming from high birth rates a few decades prior to the impending decline in fertility.
Thomas Malthus didn’t grasp the paradigmatic shift technology would provide nor the relationship between fertility and prosperity.
As prosperity (as measured by GDP) increases, infant and child mortality as well as total fertility rate, each decrease. (I’m calling out the poor statistical representation of the non-zero-based Y-axis, but I don’t believe this was done to exaggerate the slope. It’s apparently just out of index.)
Notable in the charts above, are the delays in reproduction by the average Australian woman to around 30 years effectively limits the delivery to about 2 (1.7) whereas the hunter-gatherers commence closer to 20 years, yielding them an average of 5 children.
Semen quality (motility) and count are down.
If declining semen count trends remain unabated or unaltered, one might anticipate a point where male fertility (potency?) reaches zero. This is characterised as azoopermia and projects this on Parisian males just past 2030 and by 2026 for New Zealanders.
This downward trend is not constrained by region.
A correlated trend in fertility rate is an increase in testicular cancer, as shown with NSW data, even as ovarian cancer remains steady and cervical cancers are decreasing.
Conversely, other reproductive cancers (in NSW)—uterine and breast cancers—are on the rise in sync with testicular cancers and the drop in fertility.
My intent with this post is to share rather than editorialise. The video speaks for itself. I’ve provided some excerpted content for those who can’t spare the time to view the source.
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