Study: Have Fewer Children to Help Environment, May Lead to More Abortions

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 4, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Study: Have Fewer Children to Help Environment, May Lead to More Abortions

by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 4
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — A new study that claims overpopulation exists and that it hurts the environment has an answer for parents: have fewer children. The study could lead to more abortions and promote euthanasia, since it says children who live longer in more developed countries pose a bigger environmental threat.

The report comes at a time when other documentaries are showing underpopulation problems in many areas of the world.

The latest junk science report to say people are a problem comes from statisticians at Oregon State University.

The OSU researchers claim the adverse impact of couples having a second child is 20 times more adverse to the environment than helpful practices they could engage in such as recycling, driving a low-mileage car or using energy efficient light bulbs.

"In discussions about climate change, we tend to focus on the carbon emissions of an individual over his or her lifetime," OSU researcher Paul Murtaugh said, according to a Live Science report. "Those are important issues and it’s essential that they should be considered. But an added challenge facing us is continuing population growth and increasing global consumption of resources."

Murtaugh complained that having a child normally results in that person having offspring and the combined effects of the people — who may otherwise be killed in abortions — is worse for the environment.

The statistician also said that having an additional child in the United States or other developed nations is worse than having an extra baby in a place like China, where the nation’s government already has a forced-abortion one-child policy per couple rule in place.

Because children in lesser developed nations don’t live as long as children born in the United States or first-world countries, they hurt the environment less by simply not being alive as long.

The study said children born in the United States are five times more hurtful to the environment than those in China — which could easily lead to an ethic that euthanasia is needed to reduce the population and allegedly help the environment.

Yet, children born in impoverished nations don’t escape Murtaugh’s condemnation because they, too, are hurting their environment more as their nation’s economy and opportunities improve.

"China and India right now are steadily increasing their carbon emissions and industrial development, and other developing nations may also continue to increase as they seek higher standards of living," Murtaugh said.

Despite advancing ideas that could easily lead to more abortions and euthanasia, Murtaugh says the Oregon State University team isn’t advocating that governments adopt such laws. They just want to educate people.

"Many people are unaware of the power of exponential population growth," Murtaugh said. "Future growth amplifies the consequences of people’s reproductive choices today, the same way that compound interest amplifies a bank balance."

The OSU team published its findings in the 2009 issue of the journal Global Environmental Change.

Sign Up for Free Pro-Life News From

Daily Pro-Life News Report Twice-Weekly Pro-Life
News Report
Receive a free daily email report from with the latest pro-life news stories on abortion, euthanasia and stem cell research. Sign up here. Receive a free twice-weekly email report with the latest pro-life news headlines on abortion, euthanasia and stem cell research. Sign up here.