Clinton Adviser Fears Population Crunch

Speaking on a BBC radio talk show, an adviser to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that there are “probably already too many people on the planet” than the Earth’s ecosystem can sustain.

Dr. Nina Federoff, an adviser to Clinton as well as her predecessor, Condoleeza Rice, said that with a population of almost seven billion, humans will need to better manage water and “wild lands.”

She also said genetically modified agriculture would be required to sustain large populations.

–Brittany Owens/


“Earth population ‘exceeds limits'”
BBC News/March 31, 2009

5 thoughts on “Clinton Adviser Fears Population Crunch

  1. Genetically modified agriculture? Why don’t we just genetically modify humans so they are smaller, require less food and can’t reproduce? This solution is just as inane as Federoffs solution. The problem with genetically modified agriculture is the ecological and human health impacts. The problem with too many people is that we can’t see the forest for the trees. Lets show some respect to people and not say that there is too many of them, but find more ecologically friendly agricultural methods that allow for more sustainable farming rather than GM agriculture. The Earth has the capacity to support life, as long as it’s genuine natural life and not a human constructed pathogen.

  2. Graeme, get with the program. Yes, the Earth has the capacity to support life, but there are limits! Have you ever been to a slum in a third world country? Literally hundreds of thousands of people living in corrugated metal shacks (if they’re lucky…otherwise cardboard) with barely any agriculture or food to support them. And we keep multiplying…therefore taking up more space with allows for less space for “genuine natural life” (i.e. AGRICULTURE, FARMING, LIVESTOCK, etc). I agree, I don’t want genetically modified food…but somebody’s got to stop the population madness or the Earth won’t be able to sustain the production we’ll require from it.

    Clear your head and consider a different perspective for a minute: consider the analogy of humans being an invasive, non-native species on this planet, just as ice plant or eucalyptus are here in Northern California. There are no natural predators (and modern medicine works daily to reduce disease, which would often be a large population thinning agent); nothing to prevent us from multiplying and spreading. As we do continue to increase our population, we wipe out the native inhabitants – other wildlife, other plant life, etc, and strip the region of it’s natural biodiversity and begin to throw things off balance.

    At some point this invasive species could very possibly unbalance the Earth’s ecosystem rendering it unable to support the ‘cycle of life’ as we know it, which could in turn result in our own destruction.

    So…why is it ‘disrespectful’ to say that there are too many people? Does the Octomom really need that many kids? What about leaving the place just like you found it? You and your partner came into the world as two people…leave two people (children) behind when you go. Why leave an exponential factor when you go? It’s just not sustainable.

    The world population in 1950 was approx 2.5 billion. 60 years later (1 generation), we’re almost 3x that at 7 billion. 7 BILLION! Think of all the additional land that was once agricultural and/or free rangle space which has been claimed by this population growth.

    How can you not see a problem here?

  3. Clinton Adviser Fears Population Crunch

    Speaking on a BBC radio talk show, an adviser to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that there are “probably already too many people on the planet” than the …

  4. Get with the program, or get with the programming? Not sure if you;ve taken a plane flight to ANYWHER lately but when i fly i see PLENTY of under/not-utilised land which could easily sustain the current global population.
    1/3 of the worlds fresh water is found in the great lakes of central Africa where surrounded by countries which have populations dying fron lack of fresh water. we have technology to desal. water from the ocean but its clearly not a priority to view people as our brothers and sisters and simply write them off as excess baggage. Only problem i see is some anti-humanity agenda thinly veiled in a scarcity programming regime. remove the programming, see the program.

  5. If the human population gets too large, Earth/Nature will control our numbers in a harsh catastrophic way. The planet we live on has a long history, most of it without humans, so a humanless future is no big deal. We exist because the Earth has been kindly to carbon from space and as the least we are extremely impolite guests. We are too many and we see voracious consumption as a virtue. We are ambitious and this always puts the long game in the back seat. No amount of environmentally kind toilet rolls and dolphin friendly tuna tins can change our ambition gene. However, all is not lost – there is a lot of carbon and a lot of space out there.