Eight Billion Reasons Population Matters

The Defining Issue of the 21st Century

Non-Fiction - Social Issues
388 Pages
Reviewed on 05/18/2023
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Foluso Falaye for Readers' Favorite

In Eight Billion Reasons Population Matters: The Defining Issue of the 21st Century, Valorie M. Allen makes a case for the need to pay more attention to humanity's increasing population and recognize the havoc it's wreaking on humans and the environment. The book exposes the myth that population and economic growth are good for humanity's progress with an exploration of scientific findings, statistical figures, and global reports. Valorie offers practical solutions to the human population problem and a humane approach that will benefit us socially, politically, and economically. The in-depth discussions offer a wealth of information on women’s movements regarding the population, ecological overshoot, reasons for high population levels, the influence of religion on the global population, global strategy for 2020 and beyond, and a plethora of other eye-opening subjects.

This book is not only an informative guide on the solutions to humanity's dangerously multiplying population. It's also a deeply engrossing and educational resource that enlightens readers on many societal and political issues in different parts of the world. I felt disheartened by the fact that up to "40 percent of women in South Africa have experienced sexual or physical violence." Though the book is filled with interesting information from various sources, Valorie M. Allen compiles it all into neatly organized and logical chapters. Anyone who reads Eight Billion Reasons Population Matters will be greatly impacted by its indisputable facts and sound logic. Deniers will be won over, and population activists will be educated and inspired to contribute more to solving humanity's population issue. Valorie's book has convinced me that every world leader should declare a state of emergency for the world's population problem, and I hope it reaches them.

Linda Carlson

‘A convincing study on population growth and the negative
effect it has on the planet. A RED RIBBON WINNER and highly
recommended!’ The Wishing Shelf Book Awards

Valorie Allen’s research and writing are essential to understanding how human society can settle down into a sustainable path. We are not just in a climate crisis; we are in a full-scale ecological crisis. Ms. Allen writes about the global effects of human population growth, one of the driving factors of our ecological dilemma. All pathways out of our ecological catastrophe require the contraction of human enterprise. In this book, Ms. Allen clearly articulates the importance of addressing both twin towers of our crisis—consumption and population.

Fortunately, there are non-coercive ways to reverse human population growth that offer other social gains, primarily universal women’s rights and universally available contraception. Ms. Allen’s book is part of a third important focus: public education.
Rex Weyler — a founder of Greenpeace International; author of Greenpeace: The Inside Story, Blood of the Land, and other books. He writes the ecology blog, Deep Green.
Population growth is not a victimless crime. It hurts those already here and further damages a planet reeling from over-exploitation by too many people wanting and exhorted by unscrupulous leaders to acquire and consume too much stuff. Every hectare of farmland paved over with more houses and every bit of added energy demand makes it harder for future generations to ensure food security and renewable energy resilience. Val Allen’s books are treasure troves of information and perspective serving up a veritable researchers’ bonanza while still carrying any interested reader through the whys and wherefores of the biophysical threats we face and up to a new andwell-grounded awareness.
John Erik Meyer — author; president of Canadians for Sustainable Society
Val Allen’s book is a crash course on the population issue. It examines the history of human population growth, its connections to all other environmental problems, the factors that influence it, the people and the organizations trying to do something about it, the impediments to addressing it, the growth promoters and deniers, and much more. It is a trove of information both for novices and for those who have had a long-standing interest in the issue. It can serve as both an inspiration and tool kit for anyone who wants to do something about the problem.
Dr. Madeline Weld — President, Population Institute Canada
Val Allen’s book is a great resource for students to learn about population and its connection with numerous vital issues. It makes those links admirably well.
Bill Ryerson — founder and president of Population Media Center; chair of the board of the Population Institute