Watching the clock

This morning the estimated human population of the United States reached 300 million.

We’ve been watching the planetary population clock for years. In some ways 300 million humans is just one more number, one more statistic, one more blip on a screen that has a lot of troubling information to display.

In one way this offers us an opportunity, however, and we’re glad for that. This is an opportunity for popular media to focus attention on human population and its consequences for the quality of human life.

Our growing human population now affects our entire planet, our entire global ecology, all of the ecosystems that keep us alive and healthy. Unfortunately the quality of life that many of those 300 million Americans enjoy now cannot be sustained much longer.

This is an opportunity for us to think about the quality of life we want for our children and our grandchildren. This is an opportunity for us to think hard about the consequences of the decisions we make now. What do we need to do now, today, to ensure the quality of life we want for our children? What do we need to do today to ensure the quality of life we want for our grandchildren in days to come?

Alex de Sherbinin, at Earth & Sky, comments:

One of the things that I think needs to be addressed and thought about, in the context of America turning the clock to 300 million, is our global impact in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, energy, materials usage, a whole range of things.

I’m hoping that what we can do as a society is … see these as opportunities to come up with novel solutions such as more fuel efficient transport systems. We’re a nation that prides itself on innovation.

Thanks for taking the time to think about this. Let’s keep thinking, shall we? Let’s keep thinking about the ways we can ensure a decent quality of life for our children and grandchildren.

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  1. Tar Heel Tavern #87

    Welcome to this week’s edition of Tar Heel Tavern, a roundup of all that is good about blogging from the state of North Carolina. … I was reminded by the SustainabilitySoutheast post … we must continue to pay attention to the choices we make today, not just for our own quality of life, but that of our children, grandchildren, and so on.

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