FACTS

    A new Lancet study found that within the next 80 years a total of 23 nations, including Spain and Japan, are on course to see their populations halve due to declining birth rates. Additionally, it predicted that “nearly three-quarters of the 195 nations included in the study will not be producing enough children to maintain their workforces.”

    “That’s a pretty big thing; most of the world is transitioning into natural population decline…it’s extraordinary, we’ll have to reorganize societies.”

    Professor Christopher Murray, Director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation and lead researcher of the study

    LEFT

    The Left believes that the findings are “potentially good news” regarding the climate but would have a negative effect on economic conditions. The Lancet‘s editor-in-chief stated in a press release that the study “underlines the importance of protecting and strengthening the sexual and reproductive rights of women.”

    “Responding to population decline is likely to become an overriding policy concern in many nations, but must not compromise efforts to enhance women’s reproductive health or progress on women’s rights.”

    Stein Emil Vollset, Professor of Global Health at the University of Washington

    The research team argues that “the optimal strategy for economic growth, fiscal stability, and geopolitical security” will be more “liberal immigration” policies.

    RIGHT

    The Right disagrees. David Coleman, a professor of demography at Oxford University, “pointed out that immigration can prevent population decline — that is, it can add a lot of people to the country — but it does not significantly change the age structure in the way that many immigration advocates seem to imagine.” Both Coleman and American Enterprise Institute demographer Nicholas Eberstadt argue that slightly raising the retirement age would have a bigger effect on the US than increasing immigration by tens of millions of people.

    “One could favor liberal immigration policies for many reasons, but it is no fix for an aging society…Raising the retirement age and getting more working-age people back to work are much more efficient in dealing with the issue.”

    Steven Camarota, Director of Research for the Center for Immigration Studies.

    Declining birth rates are also attributed to cultural changes in values and beliefs. National Review senior writer David Harsanyi decried the fact that many people “avoid having kids because of a quasi-religious belief in apocalyptic climate change and overpopulation” – something the Right says has been a “threat” from the Left for decades.

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