Editor’s note: This column is authored byDavid Wojick. Africa has the world’s lowest electrification rate. Its power consumption per capita is just 613 kilowatt-hours per year, compared to 6,500 kWh in Europe and 13,000 in the United States, African Development Bank (AfDB) President Akinwumi Adesina observed in July 2017. That’s 9.4% of EU and 4.7% of US electricity consumption. It’s equivalent to Americans having electricity only 1 hour a day, 8 hours a week, 411 hours per year – at totally unpredictable times, for a few minutes, hours or days at a stretch.It’s actually even worse than that. Excluding significantly electrified South Africa, sub-Sahara Africans consume an almost irrelevant 181 kWh of electricity per capita – 1.4% of the average American’s!
In Sub-Saharan Africa, over 600 million people have no electricity, and over 700 million rely on wood, grass and dung for cooking and heating. The region is home to 16% of the world’s population, and 53% of those without electricity. By 2050, its urban populations could increase by 600 million.
Determined to transform the “dark continent,” the AfDB launched a $12-billion New Deal on Energy in 2017 and a Light Up and Power Africa initiative in July 2018. It frequently emphasized that access to sufficient supplies of reliable, affordable modern energy – including fossil fuels – is critical for the continent’s social and economic development. Without energy, it is impossible to create jobs, increase productivity, reduce inequality, improve people’s health and wellbeing, or end poverty.
The bank’s lofty goal for its energy New Deal is 100% access to electricity in urban areas, and 95% in rural areas, by 2025. In July 2017, Mr. Adesina told the African Union Summit he was excited that “Japan has answered our call” to “adopt a balanced energy mix” that includes “its ultra-super critical clean coal technologies” that remove sulfur, nitrogen oxides and particulates, while greatly reducing CO2 emissions.
In 2018, the bank approved seed money for a Nigerian coal project and geared up to finance a 350MW coal plant in Senegal. It also initiated plans for a $2-billion coal-fired power station in the Kenya’s port city of Lamu, after the IMF, World Bank and other western lenders rebuffed Kenya.
But then Mr. Adesina and the AfDB caved in to carbon colonialist pressure. The bank now says almost nothing about coal or even natural gas. Its new themes include: responding to global concerns about climate change, gradually adopting a “low-carbon and sustainable growth path,” significantly reducing reliance on fossil fuels, and transitioning to “green growth” and “clean renewable energy,”
In September 2019, the bank announced that it planned to begin scrapping coal-fired power plants all across Africa, build “the largest solar zone” in the world, and pull funding for the Lamu power plant. “We’re getting out of coal,” Mr. Adesina said. “Coal is the past, and renewable energy is the future.”
So the AfDB has joined the World Bank, Goldman Sachs and other Multilateral anti-Development Banks in caring more about climate alarmism and avoiding criticism from the likes of Greta, the perpetually aggrieved and angry Grinch of Christmas 2019 – than they do about safeguarding the lives, livelihoods, health and living standards of hundreds of millions of electricity-deprived Africans.
This 180-degree flip-flop is delusional, dysfunctional and disingenuous. For many, it will be lethal.
. . .
Finally, banishing fossil fuels (and nuclear), and focusing on pseudo-renewable energy will mean millions of children and parents will continue to suffer and die needlessly every year from diseases of poverty and energy deprivation. This eco-manslaughter at the hands of climate activists and banks must not continue.
The Kenyan Cabinet, chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta, has approved the commercial planting of Bt cotton after the 5-year field trials showed positive results. The biotech crop is expected to increase the cotton production of Kenyan farmers and thus boost the manufacturing pillar of the Big 4 Agenda where it is stated that Kenya aims…
Control: Communism, Environmentalism and the Overpopulation Myth.
The roots of environmentalism go back to the eighteenth century in the form of the overpopulation myth of Malthusian-ism, which was all about limiting the human population to prevent a predicted Malthusian Catastrophe, i.e. mass starvation, and for genetic purity, especially among supposedly genetically inferior groups e.g. certain races, cultures and the chronically poor. Malthus was influenced by the utopian socialist beliefs of his father, David Hume and Jean James Rousseau that the poor were incapable of advancing and were preventing the establishment of a perfect utopian society. This belief, in turn, is based on the progressive philosophies of materialism, (i.e. there is no spiritual side, only the material we can see and touch), and humanism, (i e. man is the measure of everything and determines morals to suit his circumstances). From these progressive philosophies grew socialism, communism, fascism, the eugenics movement and environmentalism, all of which are about control of the masses by an elite few, and all are basically anti-human, anti-development and anti-freedom.
In 1798 Thomas Malthus published An Essay on the Principles of Population in which he predicted future starvation based on the assumption that the rate of population growth would far surpass the growth rate of food supplies. Using this belief, he proposed draconian measures to “fix” an assumed overpopulation problem at a time when world population was below one billion. Malthus made two major erroneous assumptions:
Genetic inferiority and enhanced fertility of less accomplished peoples
No improvement in crop yields per acre.
He assumed that the only way to grow more food was to increase the number of acres under cultivation, which limited the total “carrying capacity” of any region and indeed the world. We now know that yields have improved by orders of magnitude through things such as introduction of more prolific, disease resistant plant varieties and high yield hybrids, use of nitrogen and mineral fertilization, mechanization and controlling insect and rodent pests. Nor did he foresee the natural reduction of family size that usually occurs when people are raised beyond near-starvation subsistence, and when diseases are controlled so that high childhood mortality is reduced.
Using these false assumptions as a “reason,” he advocated government measures to reduce population growth rates among the poor such as regulating marriage, educating for moral abstinence, as well as birth control and sterilization. However, he opposed nutritional relief and improved hospital access that would have reduced infant mortality and extended life spans among the poor. In his opinion, helping the poor only made the supposed overpopulation problem worse. He extended the same philosophy to Africa where he observed that the Tsetse fly and Malaria helped to keep human population numbers and lifespans low, which he saw as a good thing. Later, based on Malthus’ theories, the British government contributed to the misery and starvation during the Irish Potato Famine by refusing to provide food aid while continuing to ship wheat from estates in Ireland to England.
The same upside down philosophy persists today among progressives who only typically want to manage the poor while keeping them poor. Malthus was pushing evolution and eugenics long before Charles Darwin and Frances Galton. In The Descent of Man, Charles Darwin assumed that the superior races (white Europeans) would eventually cause the extinction of the inferior races (black and brown). Francis Galton coined the term eugenics for a theory about improving the human race through selective breeding and exclusion from reproduction of supposedly genetically inferior groups.
“At some future period, not very distant as measured in centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world.”
—Charles Darwin, Descent of Man
Because genetic inferiority of certain races, cultures and the poor has largely been rejected by more enlightened geneticists and the public in general, (but apparently not for powerful population control supporters), along with vastly improved food production rates, environmentalism is the latest cause celebre to cover brutal inhumanity to man in the form of forced or coerced population control in places like China, India and Africa. The shift from eugenics or racial purity to environmentalism is based on the false assumption that the world is overpopulated, resulting in harm to the environment. This makes environmentalism and population control a perfect match and a good fit for the progressive elite seeking control.
Is it true that the world overpopulated? Only if agriculture had remained as it was in the eighteenth century. However, the advances in crop yields are more than enough to feed the world. There is more than enough food for all. The reason for starvation and poor nutrition is usually political mismanagement or worse, such as well-meaning environmental and population control philanthropic societies, NGOs, UN and local governments intentionally keeping the poorest in their disease ridden squalor without adequate infrastructure to provide for basic needs as a means to control the people. A healthy and educated population is much harder for a dictator to control and thereby remain in power.
The best way to stabilize population, if that is the goal, is to raise the standard of living by providing employment, transportation, electricity, medical care, education, clean water and adequate food. It is a well known fact that family size is naturally reduced when living standards are improved beyond the point where excess children are needed to insure replacement of those lost in early childhood to disease and malnutrition. It can be argued that the healthy population is too low in many areas to provide the cooperation and man power to provide better facilities without outside aid. Only cities are overpopulated, and that is usually by choice. As population numbers have grown, the world has seen an increase in the standard of living, as reflected in the global GDP per capita, due to division of labor and shared responsibility for both agriculture and developing infrastructure. We should be doing all we can to raise the world’s poor out of poverty. Caring for the environment is the last thing on the minds of people who are having difficulty feeding their children. Raising their standard of living is the best thing we could do to stabilize the population and protect the environment. Unfortunately, the progressives would rather do the opposite for ideological reasons.
I have seen the benefits of higher population and the negative side of low population myself. I grew up in an area of the Appalachian Mountains where population is low. Services that are available in the cities and towns a couple of hours away are historically not or only marginally available in these mountainous rural areas. Even finding a plumber or electrician is difficult. Although the situation is better now because of improvements in highways, many in the area still must travel to the cities for proper medical care. Lower population means lower tax basis, fewer businesses, less opportunity. It has been difficult getting businesses, whether they are medical facilities, manufacturing, commercial or food and entertainment, interested in locating in an area where the customer and workforce base are low. It has been particularly difficult getting doctors to come and stay. It hasn’t been that long since the first fast food restaurant came into the area. I bring this up to illustrate the logic of raising the population to improve living standards. Granted, this is a far cry from poor villages in other countries, but it still illustrates the point that higher population brings higher living standards.
NOTE: Updated from Anti-humanism, Communism, Environmentalism and the Overpopulation Myth, June 2018.
 Eugenics is the “science” of improving the human race by selective breeding of genetically superior people and preventing supposedly genetically inferior people from reproducing.
 Thomas Robert Malthus, An Essay on the Principles of Population, 1798, London
 Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species , 1858, London, The Descent of Man, 1871
 Francis Galton, 1865 article “Hereditary Talent and Character”, Hereditary Genius., 1869, Inquiries into Human Faculty and Its Development, 1883.
The Overpopulation Myth – 200+ years of doom and gloom
Who says the world is overpopulated? And what does that mean anyway? Hunger? Crowding? Environmental harm? For over 200 years we’ve been told that the world is overpopulated. But is it? Check this out.
In 1798, Thomas Malthus thought the world was overpopulated when world population was under one billion. He wanted to deny aid to the poor in his country and praised malaria for keeping the death rate high and life spans short in Africa and other developing countries. He saw disease, famine and war as good things to reduce population. His philosophy, which prompted Britain to pass laws against helping the Irish, was responsible for a million deaths in the Irish potato famine while still exporting wheat from Ireland to Britain. Malthus made two major erroneous assumptions: no improvements in crop yields per acre and the genetic inferiority, enhanced fertility and inability of the poor to improve their economic status. He was wrong.
“Instead of recommending cleanliness to the poor, we should encourage contrary habits. In our towns we should make the streets narrower, crowd more people into the houses, and court the return of the plague. In the country, we should build our villages near stagnant pools, and particularly encourage settlements in all marshy and unwholesome situations. But above all, we should reprobate specific remedies for ravaging diseases; and restrain those benevolent, but much mistaken men, who have thought they were doing a service to mankind by projecting schemes for the total extirpations of particular disorders.”
—Thomas Malthus, An Essay on the Principles of Population, 1798
When world population was about 1.3 billion, Charles Darwin, whose Theory of Evolution was based on Malthus’ book, thought the struggle for survival would cause the extinction of underdeveloped cultures by developed peoples. He was wrong.
“At some future period, not very distant as measured in centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage races throughout the world.”
—Charles Darwin, The Descent of Man, 1871
Francis Galton, creator of Eugenics, the so-called science of improving the human race, thought the African races were so inferior genetically that Chinese should be settled in Africa to drive the Negro races to extinction and replace them. He was wrong.
“My proposal is to make the encouragement of the Chinese settlements at one or more suitable places on the East Coast of Africa a part of our national policy, in the belief that the Chinese immigrants would not only maintain their position, but that they would multiply and their descendants supplant the inferior Negro race.”
— The Times, June 5, 1873, “Africa for the Chinese,” Francis Galton
The Eugenics movement in Britain and America wanted to reduce the population by preventing procreation by “genetically inferior” people, including sterilization and institutionalization. The Eugenics movement influenced policies that limited immigration based on racial and ethnic background because of the assumed genetic inferiority of certain races and cultures.
Around 1920 when the population was about 1.9 billion, Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood and a prominent eugenicist, believed we needed to get rid of “human weeds,” including dark skinned people from Southern Europe, Africa and India as well as the mentally or physically impaired. She counted among them the generationally poor and criminals. She advocated for sterilization and birth control, and later for abortion. She was wrong.
“The most serious charge that can be brought against modern benevolence is that it encourages the perpetuation of defectives, delinquents and dependents. These are the most dangerous elements in the world community, the most devastating curse on human progress and expression.”
— Margaret Sanger in The Pivot of Civilization, 1922
In the 1930s when world population was about 2 billion, Adolf Hitler believed the world was overpopulated and, following an older philosophy of German expansion, sought to gain “Lebensraum” (living room) by invading other countries and exterminating “inferior” people, including Jews and Gypsies. By doing so he sought to create a super race of Arian Germans. He was wrong.
“In the limitation of this living space lies the compulsion for the struggle for survival, and the struggle for survival, in turn contains the precondition for evolution.”
— Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf, 1925
When The Population Bomb was published in 1968 by Paul Ehrlich, world population was about 3.7 billion. He believed the world was overpopulated and required drastic action to reduce the population in order to prevent mass starvation and collapse of the society. He was wrong.
“The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now. At this late date nothing can prevent a substantial increase in the world death rate…”
— Paul Ehrlich, The Population Bomb, 1968
In that same decade, US Indian Health Service, using newly created Medicaid money, began sterilizing or implanting IUDs in Native American women without informed consent or knowledge and it was often coerced. For some tribes, it was near genocide. Department of Health Education and Welfare Population Crisis Committee sterilized up to a third of women in Puerto Rico.
Planned Parenthood clinics, which had been placed in poor, mostly black, neighborhoods began the modern abortion industry targeting African Americans as “human weeds;” the US Office of Economic Opportunity also set up “birth control” clinics in black neighborhoods and schools.
In 1966, under President Johnson, US AID began requiring population control quotas as a condition for receiving foreign aid, even in famines or other emergencies. Mass sterilization camps were set up in poor countries using equipment supplied by the UN and US. This has continued to this day except for a recent Trump ban on USAID and US support for UNFPA being used for sterilization and abortion. However, other agencies have filled the gap. Today, the United Nations has stepped up their propaganda and coercion of poor countries for liberalization of abortion laws.
Meanwhile, in the 1960s Norman Borlaug and others began the Green Revolution by breeding more prolific, more disease resistant and more nutritious varieties of grains along with modern agricultural methods. Crop yields increased by orders of magnitude, making it possible to feed the world without sacrificing forests and other pristine wilderness areas. India went from famine to self-sustainability in little more than a decade.
In 1972, after nearly 30 years of controlling disease carrying insects, DDT was banned by the EPA in spite of overwhelming evidence refuting claims of harm; the ban was based more on political fears of a growing population in developing countries than on real science or perceived harm. It had been largely responsible for eradicating malaria in North America and Europe, and reducing its incidence in developing countries in which it was used. US and UN agencies then required developing countries to abandon DDT in order to receive financial support. It is even now only beginning to be used on interior walls in some areas of Africa to control malaria carrying mosquitoes. India never banned its use for homes and has greatly reduced malaria by semiannual spraying of interior walls. Today India manufactures and exports DDT. See “DDT: A Study in Scientific Fraud,” by J. Gordon Edwards, Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons Volume 9 Number 3 Fall 2004. On the web at these links: http://www.jpands.org/vol9no3/edwards.pdf, and related blog DDT Needed Now in Underdeveloped Countries,
“My own doubts came when DDT was introduced for civilian use. In Guyana, within two years it had almost eliminated malaria, but at the same time the birth rate had doubled. So my chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it has greatly added to the population problem.”
—Alexander King, cofounder of the Club of Rome, 1990
Today the world population is about 7.5 billion. USAID, UNFPA, (Fund for Population Activities), UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), International Planned Parenthood, Population Council and other groups continue the abortion, sterilization, IUD implantation and birth control activities in poor countries around the world. China has had a draconian one child policy involving forced abortions, sterilization and denial of benefits. Recently China has allowed a second child, but only after 4 years and only with a state approval certificate. A child born outside this requirement gets no government benefits or education.
So, is the world overpopulated? Let’s look at what we mean by overpopulated.
Do we have enough food for everyone?Yes. Thanks to modern agricultural techniques and high yield crops there is more than enough for at least 11 billion people without any increase in acres cultivated. Advancing technology will probably multiply the yield still further as it has in the past. Is the food distributed fairly? No. Hunger has more to do with local politics than with food supplies. Corrupt governments, propped up by government to government foreign aid, are incentivized to help with international population control schemes, but not to build infrastructure, attract investment and help to raise the standard of living of their own rural poor. Corrupt governments want aid to continue, so economic development threatens this.
Is there enough room for all the people? Compared to the land area of the earth, the population is very small. For perspective, if the entire global population was placed on the big island of Hawaii, everyone would have 1.4 square meters to sit or stand. Using the same thought experiment, if all the people in the world were placed in Texas, each person would have almost 93 square meters. A family of four would have 372 square meters. That’s about 4000 square feet, enough for a 2000 square foot house and a yard or garden. No one is suggesting we actually do this, except for the loony left who are grasping at straws to defeat this argument against the overpopulation myth.
Global average population is 55 people per kilometer of land area, excluding Antarctica. That’s 17.96 acres per family of four. In 2016, over 54% of the population lived in cities, which covers only 2.7% of the land. That means that 46% of the population is rural and lives on 97.3% of the land area. That calculates to 26 people /km2 in rural areas or 38 acres per family of four. Yes, I know that large areas are uninhabitable. Even if we assumed 50% uninhabitable, that’s still a lot of land per person. The fact that only 10% of the land is actually inhabited doesn’t change the picture. There is still a lot of land out there to accommodate and feed a larger population. All this doesn’t even count the 71% of the earth’s surface that is water, which is a food source and a highway between markets.
Is the environment being harmed by too many people? No. Poverty, including subsistence farming, not population, causes environmental harm and deforestation. Modern agriculture and higher yield crop varieties can end deforestation and provide surplus crops to sell. Roads, electricity, clean water and disease control can provide a healthy workforce and energy to attract investors and run industry.
Developed countries have bought into the overpopulation myth to the point that their birth rates are below replacement value. Japan, which reached one of the lowest global birth rates of 1.4 in 2014, has started paying people to have children because of the looming demographic catastrophe. Some of the highest density areas of the world are the richest. Look at Shanghai. It is not only the most populated city in the world, 24 million, but is one of the most prosperous.
Rural poor areas in developing countries are underpopulated. With diseases from insects and contaminated water taking a high toll and attrition from migration into cities by the young and healthy, there are not enough healthy people to build infrastructure and markets and raise the standard of living of the rural poor. They already have population control. They certainly don’t need birth control, sterilization and abortion.
Is the planet overpopulated? By all measures of overpopulation, the earth is far from capacity to support its people. Since overpopulation advocates have been scaring us for 200 years, why should be believe what they keep saying? Quit worrying about an assumed problem that has yet to materialize. The real problem is with the population control advocates, the abortionists, the sterilizers and the international governmental and nongovernmental organizations that keep paying these organizations for killing off the hope of the future while keeping people in extreme poverty: poor, sick, isolated, ignorant and controlled. Free market solutions are the answer, not money given to prop up corrupt government officials and that the poor never see.
The rural poor in developing countries need disease control, electricity and roads to end isolation. They need Employment, Education, Investment, Infrastructure and Disease Control to join the 21st century.
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The book: Saving Africa from Lies that Kill: How Myths about the Environment and Overpopulation are Destroying Third World Countries was published in November, 2018. Print and eBook are available online at Amazon.com. and other outlets.
My first book, Perverted Truth Exposed: How Progressive Philosophy has Corrupted Science was published in 2016. It is available in print and ebook, on line only, through World Net Daily store, Amazon, Books-A-Million and Barnes & Noble. See the companion blog at www.realscienceblog.com for related posts.