Population Matters Update - October 2015 Part I
 

Population awareness

Pope Francis called for action to address poverty and climate change during his recent visit to the United States, but his efforts will be fruitless if global population growth is not addressed.

Good news for both humans and wildlife: Australia’s population growth has reached its lowest level in a decade

Australia’s annual population growth has reached its lowest level in 10 years due to decreases in immigration and the birth rate. Germany is experiencing its greatest population growth since 1992.

The Worldwatch Institute's latest report shows that global consumption levels are at an all-time high. The authors suggest we are failing to acknowledge the true social and environmental costs of resource depletion, pollution, climate change and other consequences of overpopulation.

More >>   What you can do >>

Family planning & women's rights

The consulting firm McKinsey & Company has found that denying women equality limits economic growth. The company estimates that gender equality would increase global gross domestic product by approximately 26 per cent or US $28 trillion by 2025.

Republican legislators in the United States are seeking to defund the Planned Parenthood Federation of America despite a Senate rejection last week of a bill that would have discontinued support for the organization.

Self-injectable contraceptives could offer women a convenient way to take control of their family planning

Pfizer has announced that the first at-home injectable contraceptive is now available in the United Kingdom. The company stated that “self-injectable Sayana Press could offer an alternative to women who are short on time yet still want to take control of their family planning.”

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Environmental conservation

President Xi Jinping of China announced last week that the country will launch the world’s largest carbon-trading program by 2017 in order to reduce emissions from the burning of fossil fuels. The announcement is the first of its kind of a national scheme.

Volkswagen has been mired in scandal and the company’s environmental credibility has been damaged in response to revelations of systematic falsification of emissions test results.

Air pollution could kill up to 6.6 million people per year by 2050

If nothing is done to address increasing levels of air pollution, it could kill as many as 6.6 million people per year by 2050, according to a study published in Nature. The number could double by 2085.

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Sustainable lifestyles

World leaders recently met in New York to launch the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We must ensure that working toward a sustainable population is incorporated into efforts to achieve the goals.

US residents are sending twice as much garbage to landfills as previously thought

A new study published in Nature Climate Change indicates that United States residents are sending twice as much garbage to landfills as previously thought. The discovery could prompt researchers to find new ways to reduce methane emissions from landfills.

United Kingdom Minister of State for Housing and Planning Brandon Lewis has called for a million new homes to be built by 2020 to address the housing crisis in the country. The government has not suggested curbing population growth to limit demand.

More >>   What you can do >>

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Population Matters Update is edited by Katie Malzbender.


 

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