To mark World Population Day on 11 July, seven organizations from three continents are calling on national governments and international institutions to take urgent action in response to the 1992 and 2017 Warnings to Humanity.
These warnings were made by the world’s leading scientists. In 1992, 1,700 scientists urged humankind to curtail environmental destruction and improve its stewardship of the Earth. Last year, 20,000 scientists from 184 countries published a Second Notice, pointing to runaway consumption of limited resources by a still rapidly growing population.
Ms Sandra Kanck of Sustainable Population Australia says these grave warnings have largely gone unheeded by governments and the time for appropriate action is long overdue.
“World population is growing at more than 80 million per year and most forecasts see this as continuing for decades to come, and we know that climate change emissions are in lockstep with population numbers.
“The 2017 Second Notice said humanity had failed to take sufficient notice of the original warning and that the environmental challenges were getting worse,” he/she says. “It stressed that continued rapid population growth was a primary driver behind many ecological and even societal threats.
“It lists 13 policy measures essential to safeguarding our future, including ‘estimating a scientifically defensible, sustainable human population size for the long term while rallying nations and leaders to support that vital goal.’
“Our lack of adequate and appropriate action since 1992 risks condemning our children to a bleak and challenging future,” says Ms Kanck. “The global population has grown by more than two billion people. Hard-won progress in human rights and social justice is at risk.”
The undersigned organizations are calling on national governments and international institutions to respond to the Warnings to Humanity with urgent action. Specifically, they call on them to:
– Detail what actions they intend to take regarding the 13 specific policy prescriptions it lays out, including promoting a sustainable population size.
– Endorse the Scientists Warning to Humanity at ScientistsWarning.org.
All signatories to this statement are committed to the goal of a sustainable world population, achieved through ethical, humane and non-coercive means that fully respect human rights.
Signatory organisations as of 11 July 2018: