Henry Gee is both a paleontologist and editor at Nature. He has a book out, A (Very) Short History of Life on Earth (St. Martin’s Press, 2021) and he also has a message for all of us: “Habitat degradation, low genetic variation and declining fertility are setting Homo sapiens up for collapse:”
Another preoccupation of the 1960s, apart from nuclear annihilation, was overpopulation. Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich’s book The Population Bomb was published in 1968, a year when the rate of world population growth was more than 2 percent—the highest in recorded history.Henry Gee, “Humans Are Doomed to Go Extinct” at Scientific American (November 30, 2021)
That was then. Now, underpopulation is wearing out the worry beads.
Gee frets, we are a dead species walking:
“The species most at risk are those that dominate particular habitat patches at the expense of others, who tend to migrate elsewhere, and are therefore spread more thinly,” Gee posited. “Humans occupy more or less the whole planet, and with our sequestration of a large wedge of the productivity of this planetwide habitat patch, we are dominant within it.”Victor Tangermann, “Scientist says that humans are almost certainly going extinct” at Futurism (November 30, 2021)
Question: If Paul Ehrlich was wrong, why shouldn’t we just assume that Henry Gee is too?