On October 26th, 2010, Michael Shaw of Freedom Advocates and John Bush of Texans for Accountable Government went to Austin City Hall to meet Austin’s new Chief Sustainability Officer, Lucia Athens. They asked her about global population reduction as it relates to sustainable development.
Shaw: How do you reconcile the idea of unalienable rights with the goals of sustainability including the Global Biodiversity Assessment report which calls for an 85 percent reduction in the human population?
Athens: You know, the population issue I think is one of those really difficult ones to navigate, it’s a very difficult topic to navigate in the context of sustainability and issues and programs. Its not an issue that I want to take on.
Bush: You don’t want to take on population reduction. That’s a good thing!
Athens: It just doesn’t seem like a place that’s gonna be a very fruitful place for us to go. I’m much more focused on practical things that we can try to implement in the near term future but also looking at the long term, that’s a very divisive topic.
Bush: You are aware of the population reduction aspects of the sustainable development push from the international level?
Athens: You know its one of many topics. I don’t think it’s the most important area by any means.
Bush: They do at the UN!
Athens: I appreciate what you have to say, I think you’ve got an interesting viewpoint.