Famed naturalist and nature television presenter Sir David Attenborough has publicly announced what many conversationists have been thinking for a long time: humanity is a plague on Earth.
With the recent release of documentaries on climate change, including Leonardo DiCaprio’s ‘The Flood’, we are learning increasing amounts about how our human impact is having a catastrophic impact of our planet which survived just fine for … years without us.
Attenborough told The Telegraph that dramatically increasing human populations are also a crucial reason for our negative impact on the world’s natural resources which we rely on to survive, together with climate change.
He suggests: “Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now,”.
Together with Attenborough, other naturalists have warned of similar probabilities if the human population carries on at the rate that it currently is, with an analysis in 2011 on species loss even suggested that human are starting to cause a mass extinction which can even be compared to the one that killed the dinosaurs.
Although this sounds heavily dramatic and a bit scary, Paul Ehrlich, the president of the Centre for Conservation Biology at Stanford University has claimed that we can all take small measures to decrease our impact, including “Government propaganda, taxes, giving every sexually active human being access to modern contraception and backup abortion, and, especially, giving women absolutely equal rights and opportunities with men might very well get the global population shrinkage required if a collapse is to be avoided”.
According to a study detailed in the October 2012 issue of the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, it has been found that by providing free, reliable birth control to women, we could in fact prevent between 41%-71% of abortions in the United States.
Jerry Karnas, the population campaign director for the Center for Biological Diversity in Tucson, Ariz, agreed by saying that we need a real emphasis on women’s empowerment together with free access to birth control, meaning that thought out family planning can be easily conducted.
Attenborough is in fact a patron of the Optimum Population Trust that advocates voluntary population limitation, and believes that limiting and managing our population growth could have less of a negative impact on our already diminishing planet.