Not only will men of science have to grapple with the sciences that deal with man, but — and this is a far more difficult matter — they will have to persuade the world to listen to what they have discovered. If they cannot succeed in this difficult enterprise, man will destroy himself by his halfway cleverness.
~ Bertrand Russell, 1951
“If we don’t halt population growth with justice and compassion, it will be done for us by nature, brutally and without pity — and we will leave a ravaged world.”
~ Dr. Henry W. Kendall, Nobel Laureate
Humans on the Earth behave in some ways like a pathogenic organism, or like the cells of a tumour or neoplasm. We have grown in numbers and disturbance to Gaia, to the point where our presence is perceptibly disturbing … the human species is now so numerous as to constitute a serious planetary malady. Gaia is suffering from Disseminated Primatemaia, a plague of people.
~ James Lovelock
A human population approaching 7 billion can be maintained only by desolating the Earth. If wild habitat is given over to human cultivation and habitation, if rainforests can be turned into green deserts, if genetic engineering enables ever-higher yields to be extorted from the thinning soils—then humans will have created for themselves a new geological era, the Eremozoic, the Era of Solitude, in which little remains on the Earth but themselves and the prosthetic environment that keeps them alive.
~ John Gray
“Democracy cannot survive overpopulation. Human dignity cannot survive it. Convenience and decency cannot survive it. As you put more and more people onto the world, the value of life not only declines, it disappears. It doesn’t matter if someone dies. The more people there are, the less one individual matters.”
~ Isaac Asimov
“The kind of growth Western culture has experienced over the past three hundred years would be considered a sign of gross malfunction in any other context. Healthy growth is paced differently – it does not absorb or destroy everything living around it. It is cancerous cells that grow and reproduce rapidly in total disregard of their connection with surrounding cells. From this viewpoint technology would have to be regarded as a cancer on human culture, Western culture as a cancer on the human species, and the human species as a cancer on terrestrial life – a cancer that may in the end be treated by radiation and radical surgery at the same time.”
~ Philip Slater, Earthwalk, 1974
“To most of us nothing is so invisible as an unpleasant truth. Though it is held before our eyes, pushed under our noses, rammed down our throats – we know it not.”
~ Eric Hoffer