Top Population News

How big water projects helped trigger Africa’s migrant crisis.

Major dam and irrigation projects are drying up the wetlands that sustain life in the arid Sahel region of Africa. The result has been a wave of environmental refugees. Yale Environment 360

America’s climate refugees have been abandoned by Trump.

As hurricane after hurricane ravages Puerto Rico and the Gulf Coast, the Trump administration has quietly walked away from a government-wide effort to help the growing number of American communities whose very existence is threatened by climate change. Mother Jones

See photos of the most crowded island on Earth.

People who find a way to live in difficult environmental conditions have always fascinated photographer Charlie Cordero. National Geographic Magazine

Our Reporting on Population

More news from EHN

Science: Are we in a male fertility death spiral?

Male sterility is a growing problem. Here's why you should be worried—and your kids should be terrified. Environmental Health News

Achieving sustainable and dignified life for all on an increasingly small planet.

It’s time to rethink our food system and acknowledge our responsibilities to renewal of resources and the rights of existence for all life forms on Earth. Environmental Health News

The Holocene climate experience.

The history of climate and human health gives us a glimpse of the dramatically amplified risks we face if present trends continue. Daily Climate


When 1.2 billion tourists become 1.8 billion, will we be ready?

How we manage this industry and its growth is extremely important, because even as every country wants to attract large numbers of visitors, no one, we believe, intends to sit by and allow damage to the very infrastructure that pulls visitors in the first place. more…

Save our bats, belugas and bobolinks.

According to the World Wildlife Fund Canada, 451 of 903 mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian and fish species across the country have declined in number by a shocking average of 83 per cent. Governments must act immediately to save them from extinction. more…

No kidding: In defense of the childless.

More and more Westerners have no kids. They should not be criticized for it. more…

Climate and population

Disasters make 14 million people homeless each year.

About 14 million people are being made homeless on average each year as a result of sudden disasters such as floods and storms, new figures show. Thomson Reuters Foundation

David Attenborough on the scourge of the oceans: 'I remember being told plastic doesn't decay, it's wonderful.'

David Attenborough explains why plastic pollution, climate change and overpopulation are problems too urgent to be left to ecologists. The Guardian


Should we be having fewer children for the sake of the planet?

Supporters’ contributions to our podcast on population and climate change show exactly why we need to talk about this issue. more…

I’m an environmental journalist, but I never write about overpopulation. Here’s why.

The best ways to address population don’t necessarily involve talking about it at all. more…

Puerto Rico: A potential experiment in degrowth?

I’m sure that some will criticize the insensitivity of the timing of this essay. How can you talk about Puerto Rico, climate change, and degrowth at this tragic time? more…

Water and population

Egypt's Nile River in jeopardy from dam in Ethiopia.

Even without the Grand Renaissance Dam, the United Nations estimates Egypt will face “absolute water scarcity” by 2025 for reasons largely of its own making. USA Today

Will New Zealand remain a green and pleasant land?

The notion of a country blessed with pristine land, water and air appeals not only to visitors. It goes to the core of what the country means to New Zealanders themselves. Economist

Solutions and Good News

Children's Health and population

Pope implicitly criticizes US for leaving Paris climate accord.

Pope Francis implicitly criticized the United States on Monday for pulling out of the Paris agreement on climate change, praising it as a means to control the devastating effects of global warming. Reuters

People love to live in places that are at risk for disasters, 'and this is what happens.'

Many communities in the United States face floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires. Experts say the natural disasters are inevitable, but are we concerned, and are we ready? Washington Post

Commentary: Sperm counts, testicular cancers, and the environment.

Should we be worried about our future ability to reproduce ourselves, as some media coverage has claimed? We have already waited too long. As New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof recently wrote: “Our human future will only be as healthy as our sperm.” British Medical Journal

Editor comments: Link to Kristof column. Link to more coverage. -JPM

How the 1% are preparing for the apocalypse.

The threat of global annihilation may feel as present as it did during the Cold War, but today's high-security shelters could not be more different from their 20th-century counterparts. CNN

Editor comments: This is a less nuanced version of a similar story that appeared in the New Yorker in January 2017. -JPM

Food and population

Analysis: Why we must talk about population.

Reading David Roberts’ recent explanation of why he never writes on overpopulation, I felt compelled to reply.

Rising number of children prey to deadly malnutrition in conflict-hit Mali.

Tens of thousands of children in Mali are prey to life-threatening malnutrition as violence and displacement fuel a deepening nutrition crisis in the West African nation, the United Nations children's agency said on Monday. Thomson Reuters Foundation

China diverts 10 billion cubic meters of water to arid north in massive project.

Water supplies in north have been challenged by droughts, a surging population, agriculture, and manufacturing growth. Reuters

‘We don’t exist’: Life inside Mongolia’s swelling slums.

A scarcity of affordable housing has pushed thousands of low-income residents to the fringes of Ulan Bator, where they struggle for food and water. New York Times

Curb animal antibiotics to stop spread of resistance, say health experts.

Giving farm animals too many antibiotics can stoke resistance to the drugs. Thomson Reuters Foundation

Biodiversity and population

Panda habitat is shrinking and tourists are adding to the problem, study says.

Overall habitat in southwest China decreased in size by 4.9 per cent from 1976 to 2001, researchers found. South China Morning Post, China

VIDEO: Hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires: Is all this normal?

A climate reporter for The Times explains what you should know about recent disasters that have struck in quick succession. New York Times