Of mice and Marie

The thought of Marie Low (“Australia, we can’t just keep on building outwards forever”, canberratimes.com.au, May 23) having a live mouse in the toe of her boot will stay with me for a long time.

Nevertheless, her sentiments on the need to rein in population growth were admirable.

Similarly, Nicholas Stuart (“When what we “know” turns out to be wrong”, canberratimes.com.au, May 22) questions the long held assumption that we need a “big Australia”. He notes that, with immigration collapsing because of border closures, overall employment has risen.

He rightly acknowledges the contributions that immigration has brought us but now questions whether we need to return to the huge levels of immigration on this fragile land.

There’s a lovely ad on TV about a boy and a koala and the need to “protect all homes”. Yes, we do, koalas’ homes included. We cannot do this, however, under a scenario of endless human population growth. We have to stop somewhere, preferably now. We need to do it for our own sakes before, as Marie Low noted with the mouse plague, we turn on each other.

Equally, we need to stop growing for sake of other species that inhabit this fragile land.

Jenny Goldie Australian Financial Review 28 May 2021

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