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From the Telegraph website 07/05/2007

Lower birth rate 'would cut carbon emissions'

A lower birth rate would help cut greenhouse gas emissions, a report released today claims.

Each Briton uses nearly 750 tonnes of CO2 in a lifetime, equivalent to 620 return flights between London and New York, the Optimum Population Trust warns.

Based on a cost of £42.50 per tonne of CO2, the report estimates that the price for the climate of each new person over their lifetime is roughly £30,000.

The bill for the extra 10 million people projected for the UK by 2074 would reach more than £300 billion.

The report, called A Population-Based Climate Strategy, says: "The most effective personal climate change strategy is limiting the number of children one has.

"The most effective national and global climate change strategy is limiting the size of the population.

"Population limitation should therefore be seen as the most cost effective carbon offsetting strategy available to individuals and nations."

It concludes: "A population-based climate strategy involves fewer of the taxes, regulations and other limits on personal freedom and mobility now being canvassed in response to climate change u2026

"To sum up, it would be easier, quicker, cheaper, free and greener."

Valerie Stevens, who is a co-chairman of the OPT, said: "We appreciate that asking people to have fewer children is not going to make us popular in some quarters.

"But these are hugely important issues and the unfortunate fact is that both politicians and the environmental movement are in denial about them."


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