Population Update: More Problems for Big Australia

“Big Australia” Still Spells Problems for the Land Down Under

It wasn’t too long ago that NPG drew your attention to an op-ed piece in Australia’s largest-selling daily newspaper – Melbourne’s Herald Sun – titled “Politicians must play the numbers game on population growth.”

Author Tom Elliott called attention to the growing problem in the Land Down Under when he asked:  “How many people do we want living here in 40 years’ time:  30 million?  40 million?  50 million?  Or even more?”

Elliott noted:  “It is a debate we need to have, yet very few politicians want to discuss it.”


Melbourne, Australia – 2015 population 4.35 million projected to reach 5 million by 2025

The article went on to highlight that:  “…Australia’s population will eventually exceed 40 million.  …Successive waves of migrants… have helped increase our population to its current 24 million.  Immigration has brought many benefits to this country…  But an ever-increasing population also comes with challenges and costs attached.”

And just this summer, in the newsletter for the population activism group Sustainable Population Australia, an excerpt from a powerful speech on the consequences of overpopulation was reprinted.  Author Kevin Thomson highlights that the population growth crisis is not improving – it is only getting worse. 

In his speech, Thomson explains:  “Victoria’s population growth rate of 1.7% last year was the fastest in the country, and Melbourne has continued its relentless 200 extra people every day, 1,500 per week, 75,000 each year growth for all of a decade now.  This rapid growth creates a pincer movement on the quality of life in our city.”

These vocal Australian population activists are demanding answers to a critical question that has long been asked by NPG:  “Why can’t elected leaders be frank about this crucial issue?”  These articles serve as a powerful warning – the same environmental, economic, and quality of life challenges caused by permitting a “Big Australia” are the same ones we face here at home.  Population growth is a serious threat to our future, and we must ACT NOW to slow, halt, and eventually reverse it!

In October 2013, NPG Senior Advisor David Simcox analyzed the dangers of “Big Australia” in the NPG Footnote Population Politics:  An Australian Case Study.  Simcox notes the warring political agendas that helped create Australia’s current population policies – and its resulting population growth.  Much like in the U.S., Simcox explains that:  “Arguments for environmental sanity and population restraint have less resonance with the economy on a winning streak.”  

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