Monday, 9 June 2008

Global warming no excuse for anti-life measures

The claim that global warming is a man-made threat to the earth and its inhabitants is now being used to call for population control. Jonathon Porritt, a leading environmentalist, has called for more support for "family planning" and "reproductive health" (common euphemisms for abortion) to reduce human numbers and therefore carbon emissions. Mr Porritt has also attacked the Catholic Church for its resistance to anti-life measures, saying: "I really believe The Roman Catholic Church is undermining the future prospects for human kind." It is interesting to note Mr Porritt was appointed as chairman of the Sustainable Development Commission by Tony Blair. I have noted elsewhere Mr Blair's anti-life record in government, and his refusal to repudiate his record since his reception into the Catholic Church.

Mr Porritt is in fact more correctly titled The Hon Sir Jonathon Porritt, 2nd Baronet, one of three children of the 11th Governor-General of New Zealand. New Zealand provides a good example of why the claims of population control advocates are fanciful. Our colleagues at the Population Research Institute (PRI) last year looked at New Zealand, in a well-written essay entitled Eunuchs for the Green Kingdom. In short, not only is New Zealand's birth rate (1.95 children per woman of child-bearing age) below replacement level (2.1), but the country has one of the world's lowest population densities, amidst fertile countryside. No over-population there, though inconvenient truths don't stop some environmentalists calling for even fewer children to be born. Perhaps Jonathon Porritt would like to tell us which of his two siblings or his two children should not have been born in order to save the earth?

Whatever the evidence regarding man-made global warming, the right to life and the right to found a family are fundamental, universal human rights enshrined in legally-binding international conventions. Mr Porritt is attempting to bully us with the threat that if we don't stop procreating by choice, the government will stop us by force (in fact, Mr Porritt claims to have counted the amount of carbon emissions China's brutal one-child policy of forced abortions has prevented).