On Page 1 of the Sept. 21 Portland Press Herald, you proclaimed the quote ‘The greatest crisis facing humanity” in reference to global warming. In my opinion, global warming is just a symptom of the greatest crisis, which is overpopulation.

According to my World Almanac, it was not until the early 1800s that we reached the 1 billion mark. We doubled to 2 billion by 1927, reached 3 billion by 1960 and 6 billion by 1999. Note that the population is doubling at an ever-increasing rate, and that cannot continue on a planet that is not increasing in size.

Until we face the real crisis of out-of-control population growth, we can feel good by idolizing young Scandinavian girls, we can ban plastic bags, ban methane-producing beef, ban gas-guzzling cars, bemoan the dropping water table, etc.

These steps will make some people feel good, but will not significantly alter the fact that uncontrolled population growth cannot continue on a planet of fixed size and resources. Attacking symptoms will not resolve the greatest crisis facing humanity.

Don Saastamoinen


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