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How many kids will you have?

August 6, 2009

This question is targetted at all you greenies who are worried about climate change.

You spend 25 years of your life driving a high mileage car, recycling, using energy-efficient appliances and light bulbs, refusing plastic bags at the supermarket.

And then you bust it all by having a baby.

How? By buying all those baby things, the trips to the doctor, the baby sitter, the extra food & water, extra clothes, toys, and the new trail of garbage you leave in your wake.

Each one of these things consume energy to produce and treat. That means more fuel burnt and more tons of Co2 dumped into the atmosphere.

How much more?

“Under current conditions in the United States, for instance, each child ultimately adds about 9,441 metric tons of carbon dioxide to the carbon legacy of an average parent – about 5.7 times the lifetime emissions for which, on average, a person is responsible.”

Source

Now multiply that by a million if your city has that many households.

There are 6.8 billion of us now on this planet according to Wiki’s latest count. That will double in just one generation.

So what to do? Save the planet? Or produce an heir to continue your family name?

Tough choice isn’t it?

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2009 10:41 am

    mate ..you better watch this πŸ™‚

    [Youtube clip here]

    you gotta blame the ….. for climate change .haha

    Dude, I hear ya loud and clear. Sorry the filter snipped off some parts. It could cause some major overreactions, u know… πŸ˜€

  2. August 6, 2009 9:33 pm

    no $$ no kids .. xD

    Yeah that’s for sure. πŸ˜€

  3. August 7, 2009 8:48 am

    Hey damien, u’re not scare, ahh? These review might agonized, irritated or upset any mother to be, pregnant women, couples plan to start a family, unplaned pregnancy, even your parents or anybody else even though it’s the truth.

    Yah, the babies do leave or indirectly a large carbon footprint
    but there are green ways to bring up the baby. To reduce the amount of
    carbon footprint, u have forgotten there are ‘environmental baby care’ eg reusable cloth cotton nappies, green biodegradable diapers made of
    wood-pulp, breastfeed baby, secondhand baby stuff or borrow from
    relative/friends, 100% toxin-free/cruelty-free/natural/organic of baby
    products, natural childbirth …etc . material can be refer in the
    website. The trips to the doctor – no choice have to use transportation, maybe the parent should walk or car pool. The baby sitter – mother to-be take care ownselves baby. But what if poor single mum or single working mum, poor parent – grandparent take care. What if no grandparent, pass on, too old/sick to take care a baby – no solution, ahahah….maybe give it to the orphanage but it will separate the mother n baby….i don’t know. Anyhow the list go on …
    An environmental baby care consciousness will ensure the baby to live in a clean n green earth.

    p/s – u know, the best solution to fight climate change, global warming, disaster, war, pandemic H1n1 is always to be a vegetarian, a compassionate way of life. It’s heaven advice.

    Yeah ugly truths are never an easy thing to say but I trust the maturity of the people out there. πŸ˜€

    The concern about overpopulation leading to environmental decay is an old but valid concern and there’s no easy way to say it. Imagine, one pair of persons can lead to 25 people or more in just two generations and no matter the type of green products they buy, the carbon footprint of producing, packaging and transporting just food alone for the 25, even if its all veg, is staggering.

  4. August 8, 2009 10:55 pm

    Me practising celibacy, therefore no children. Haha

    Won’t it be tough on your parents not to have grandkids.

  5. August 9, 2009 9:24 am

    actually, why not look at it this way. by having kids, those kids may grow up to be responsible adults (or the other way, depending on how you teach them) who actually help to save the environment more than anyone of us. Maybe some of them will end up becoming chemist/biologist/scientist/whatever-tist that can produce something good for the planet?

    Yeah that’s a good way of looking at it. Probabilitywise, its also equally likely that one of them produces a super duper neutron bomb that will kill us all in seconds.

  6. August 9, 2009 10:24 pm

    They better find that other habitable planet soon… nobody’s willing to stop production.

    Hate to say it but pandemics and natural disasters, while unfortunate, are playing a role in regulating population growth.

  7. August 10, 2009 1:43 pm

    LOL, i know you’ll say that. but human beings prefer to be hopeful. Hope is what keeps us (most of us anyway) moving forward.

    Oh yeah, hope = fuel for us.

  8. stella permalink
    August 20, 2009 8:58 am

    LOL, am not satisfied with the second part explanation. It is correct but no solution to resolve it?
    i’ve been thinking. i think all of us had somehow produce fuel too where most of our everyday in modern live depends largely on electrical stuff.
    Once i turn on this computer/laptop for work/blogs/youtube/email/anything, on the light, take the public transport, drive car, take a plane, used air-con/fan, watch the tv/dvd, use the toaster/juicer…etc, we’re using energy which eventually leads to burning fossil fuels n releasing CO2 into the atmosphere.
    Unless human live in a primitive way of life then electrical are not use n fuel is not generated.
    What am saying is many of our modern lifestyle are producing carbon footprint even human waste as well as having baby. Yeah, overpopulation leading to environmental decay is a valid concern but saving life is more important cuz killing is never right. We can only reduce the emission of CO2 by following an enviromental friendly lifestyle. or if free energy is created. So we can only create an environment conducive to save the environment.

    The carbon footprint of producing, packaging and transporting in food alone are a lot even if its all veg. But human need food to survive.
    Between veggie n meat, veg is more environmental friendly. We can only made good choices in life. Unless human had master the art of food-free life, breatharian or waterian, then carbon foodprint can be reduce largely.

    Check this out rgd technology carbon footprint which i find very useful to know.

    http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/how-to-tech/how-to-reduce-technology-carbon-footprint.htm

    Hi Stella, true almost everything we do requires energy. The good news is that in many parts of the world, people are already producing energy without burning fossil fuels. My favorite is wind generated power which the Europeans take quite seriously. We can’t totally avoid consuming fossil fuels even indirectly, but if we are conscious about it we can reduce it gradually.

    The point of my post is that even if we manage to reduce our own carbon footprints, with so many new mouths to feed popping out every day, we get right back to square one.

    Some promote veg eating and green living. Some promote lowering birth rates. I just happen to think we need both.

  9. tinytapir permalink
    October 2, 2009 6:34 pm

    Did you watch Idiocracy?

    There are greener ways to raise kids as Stella has said before.

    I think the argument “have no kids, better for the environment” is a thin line from “take a machine gun and open up in a crowded shopping mall to decrease the number of humans living in order to help the environment”.

    No I didn’t watch Idiocracy. Hmm… what u said reminds me of a project we did in high school – an ant farm. Few of the critters survive at the end of the semester.

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