The UN estimates that the world’s population will reach 10 billion and climbing by 2100. If families, on average, have half a child more than the UN projects, population will reach 16 billion by 2100.

UCLA’s Laurence Smith poses this question:

What if you could play God and do the ethically fair thing by converting the entire developing world’s level of material consumption to that now carried out by North Americans, Western Europeans, Japanese, and Australians today?

Would you?

The world Smith depicts would be frightening. Consumption globally would rise elevenfold. Where would all that meat, fish, water, energy, plastic, metal, and wood come from?

  —  David Hodgkinson, University of Western Australia Law School, The Conversation, Fixing climate change: the future isn’t what it used to be

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