On the Science page of PRI's The World you'll find an interview with the environmental journalist Fred Pearce, who believes that over-population is over hyped.
Pearce says birth rates today are much lower than in the last century, and after a few decades, our numbers will likely fall and then stabilize. He documents how women from all over the world – rich and poor alike – are choosing to have fewer children. Pearce also contends that population growth isn’t the root cause of today’s environmental ills. The current growth in population is occurring in poorer countries, which consume relatively little of the earth’s resources.
I could definitely entertain the argument that consumption by wealthy nations does more damage than straight-up population does—and that we won't be over-populated anytime soon (sorry, Malthus). And my hat's off to Pearce for interacting so thoughtfully with commenters in The World's online discussion.
Has anyone read his new book, The Coming Population Crash: and Our Planet’s Surprising Future?