I am unhappy with the recent forecasts of population doubling for Australia by 2100. Not with the forecasts themselves but with the fact that the forecasters have “sniffed the wind” correctly and sense that the Australian mania for continued population expansion will keep running until, presumably, we experience the diseconomies that such growth makes inevitable. I am uninterested in being the richest nation on earth if that means I have to live in an overcrowded, congested rubbish dump.
Under the forecasts Sydney and Melbourne will both becoming mega-cities with more than 8 million and water-poor Perth will have more than 5 million. Beautiful Sydney and most-livable city Melbourne will have double their current populations.
I’d prefer to allow our population to taper-off as the world’s population does so and then have ZPG. We live in a largely uncrowded environment with reasonably good environmental circumstances. Why not use the massive volume of resources we pour into new housing (a major part of private investment) into improving the current stock of housing, into education and intelligent leisure. In short to create better lives for a stable population.
Taking in another 25 million will have no impact on world population pressures in a world with 8 billion people. Indeed the response to small immigrations to countries like Australia will be increased population in immigrant source countries.
Even if you don’t agree with my ZPG attitudes why is population forecast to grow so intensively in currently large water-stressed cities. How about some new smaller cities?
I think that in terms of environmental thinking Australia has lost the plot with its unimaginative view of where we are going.