2020- 2022 Policy Process | Green Party of Canada
Where GPC membership collaborates to develop our policies
G21-P015 Remove GPC “Population Control” Policy to Better Reflect Party Values | VGM-2 Amended Version
This is the amended proposal adopted by GPC membership at the VGM-2.
Remove policies G08-P094 titled “Population Decline” and G08-P054 “Global Overpopulation” from official GPC policy.
G08-P054: Global Overpopulation THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Green Party of Canada address the problem of global overpopulation through a foreign policy committed to environmentally sustainable local economics and the education, health care, political, and economic rights of women as equal participants in society
G08-p94: Population Decline BE IT RESOLVED that 1. the Green Party of Canada advocates that the human population of the world and of Canada should be allowed to decline by means of lowered birth rates until a population level not exceeding the earth’s human carrying capacity with available resources and technology, is reached, having regard to the need to maintain a thriving community of life in the interests of the human population as well as for its own sake, and as indicated by a cessation of the destruction of wild nature and the beginning of its recovery; 2. the Green Party of Canada advocates as primary means of lowering birth rates; improving the education, and the social and economic power and status of women and girls; improving primary health care, and improving and spreading knowledge of birth control methods and increasing availability of birth control equipment and supplies; and · encouraging the development and spread, in countries around the world, of institutions and services providing for support in old age not dependent on the number of one’s children; 3. the Green Party of Canada recognizes that the high level of per capita resource consumption in developed countries makes the impact of their populations much more serious; and 4. the Green Party of Canada recognizes that failure to stabilize and reduce human population within a reasonable time will result in the inevitable reduction of human population by means of high death rates as the earth’s human carrying capacity is not only exceeded but reduced by the consumption of resources and the destruction of biological capital, resulting in poverty, starvation, disease, great human suffering and possibly social disruption.
Rescind Party policy to reflect current understanding of the impacts of population and consumption on the climate crisis, acknowledging that consumption rather than population is the problem. Such views are now widely considered to be racist and colonial, which goes against the principles of social justice and respect for diversity.
This will help us have policy that is consistent with our values and based in scientific evidence. Given that the current policy is overtly racist, not evidence based, and partially deflects from the real issue, it is not in line with Ecological Wisdom.
Supporting Comments from Submitter
Although it must be acknowledged that the world has a maximum carrying capacity and that overpopulation can indeed have detrimental effects on the planet, it is also clear that a more concerning factor is the mass overconsumption that is primarily taking place in the global North. GPC policy should not be prescribing measures aimed to control the growth of populations in developing countries, but rather focused on consumption habits. Moreover, although contraception should be available to women everywhere upon request, prescribing the use of contraception through policy with particular mention to young girls in Africa has clear racial connotations. Imposing such methods is a clear continuance of our colonial roots and thus should be removed from our policy as soon as possible.
This article points to high rates of consumption, emissions, and other negatives from the West as being greater determinants to our world than is population growth:
This article points to unsustainable habits rather than population growth as a core detriment to our climate:
This article points to increased consumption patterns that accompany increased urbanization as a major factor in GHG emissions rather than population growth itself:
This article highlights the multitudes of policies that can be implemented to control population growth without the inadvertent racism that lays within our party’s policy:
This article from the Guardian points to general overconsumption as a driver behind the belief that the growing population is inherently bad:
Respect for Diversity, Ecological Wisdom, Social Justice, Non-Violence
Relation to Existing Policy
This proposal would rescind G08-p94 Population Decline and G08-P54 “Global Overpopulation”
List of Endorsements
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