Science chief : 'cut birth rate to save Earth'

Posted: 24 July 2007

Chris Rapley, the new head of the Science Museum in London, UK has an uncompromising view about how global warming should be dealt with: get rid of a few billion people.

Chris Rapley
"I am not advocating genocide," said Rapley. "What I am saying is that if we invest in ways to reduce the birthrate - by improving contraception, education and healthcare - we will stop the world's population reaching its current estimated limit of between eight and 10 billion.

"That in turn will mean less carbon dioxide is being pumped into the atmosphere because there will be fewer people to drive cars and use electricity. The crucial point is that to achieve this goal you would only have to spend a fraction of the money that will be needed to bring about technological fixes, new nuclear power plants or renewable energy plants."

Rapley, currently head of the British Antarctic Survey and a passionate believer in man's influence on climate, is set to take charge of the museum, one of Britain's most challenging institutions, where strict academic requirements must be met while competing with Legoland and Disneyland to attract visitors. Only by tackling the issues of the day can he succeed, Rapley said.

Hence his urging that we deal with overpopulation, a call of wide public interest and one that reflects the contents of the recent report by the Optimum Population Trust, which called for each couple in Britain to be limited to having two children each. 'A voluntary stop-at-two guideline should be adopted for couples in the UK who want to adopt greener lifestyles,' it stated.

The interest of Rapley, sits near the extreme end of scientific views about global warming. He fears our planet faces a very hot and uncomfortable future. This belief puts him opposite climate-change deniers, about whom Rapley is generally vitriolic.

Source: The Observer 22nd July 2007

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