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Children 'bad for planet'

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  • Augie
    Children bad for planet By Sarah-Kate Templeton in London May 07, 2007 http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,21684156-5009760,00.html?
    Message 1 of 1 , May 8, 2008
      Children 'bad for planet'
      By Sarah-Kate Templeton in London
      May 07, 2007



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      http://www.news.com.au/contactus ]

      HAVING large families should be frowned upon as an environmental
      misdemeanour in the same way as frequent long-haul flights, driving a
      big car and failing to reuse plastic bags, says a report to be
      published today by a green think tank.

      The paper by the Optimum Population Trust will say that if couples
      had two children instead of three they could cut their family's
      carbon dioxide output by the equivalent of 620 return flights a year
      between London and New York.

      Full coverage: Climate change in-depth

      John Guillebaud, co-chairman of OPT and emeritus professor of family
      planning at University College London, said: "The effect on the
      planet of having one child less is an order of magnitude greater than
      all these other things we might do, such as switching off lights.

      "The greatest thing anyone in Britain could do to help the future of
      the planet would be to have one less child."

      In his latest comments, the academic says that when couples are
      planning a family they should be encouraged to think about the
      environmental consequences.

      "The decision to have children should be seen as a very big one and
      one that should take the environment into account," he added.

      Professor Guillebaud says that, as a general guideline, couples
      should produce no more than two offspring.

      The world's population is expected to increase by 2.5 billion to 9.2
      billion by 2050. Almost all the growth will take place in developing

      The population of developed nations is expected to remain unchanged
      and would have declined but for migration.

      The British fertility rate is 1.7. The EU average is 1.5. Despite
      this, Professor Guillebaud says rich countries should be the most
      concerned about family size as their children have higher per capita
      carbon dioxide emissions.
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