Opinión: No más hijos, por favor. El costo económico-ambiental de procrear

Por Willy Mak.

“Más población, más poder” resume el pensamiento sobre la necesidad de incrementar la tasa de fertilidad para un mayor desarrollo económico del país. Sin embargo, esta frase de Mao Zedong resulta contradictoria en el siglo XXI, ya que los recursos naturales no alcanzan para toda la población; por lo tanto, ¿deberíamos tener menos hijos?

Actualmente, se estima que la manera personal más eficiente de contribuir con la reducción de emisiones de carbono es evitar la procreación, dado que el costo ambiental de tener un hijo es 58.6 tCO2 por año, lo cual equivale a $2344 anuales en daño social. Dicho precio podría ser mayor, ya que el cálculo del perjuicio sesga variables como los desastres naturales.

Sin embargo, la fecundación es necesaria para transmitir los conocimientos de capital humano entre generaciones, especialmente en el desarrollo de tecnología e investigación. Por ello, tampoco es idóneo incentivar una tasa de fertilidad nula. Además, una mayor población incrementa la fuerza laboral, lo cual aumenta el PBI, que es el indicador popular para ver el bienestar de un país.

La idea de un fuerte control natal podría parecer la solución, debido a que la capacidad de regeneración del medio ambiente disminuye cada agosto. Si quisiéramos satisfacer todas nuestras necesidades, sería necesario tener 1.7 planetas Tierra. En 2018, se observó un déficit ambiental. En la imagen, podemos observar en color rojo aquellos países que consumieron mas recursos naturales de lo permitido.

(Global Footprint Network, 2019)

Esto se refuerza con algunos estudios como los de The Limits to Growth, donde mencionan que si la tasa de fertilidad se mantiene constante, ocasionará para el 2072 un decaimiento incontrolable en el bienestar de la población e industria. Si lo analizamos bajo los conceptos filosóficos del antinatalismo, traer un hijo al mundo es egoísta e hipócrita, dado que se generan dos males: primero, se ocasiona que la cría se exponga al problema de escasez en el futuro; y segundo, se resta los recursos disponibles para el resto de la población.

En síntesis, una persona adicional ocasiona daños económicos y ambientales, aunque la procreación es necesaria para el desarrollo de un país. Lamentablemente, los recursos naturales se agotan cada vez más rápido. Por lo tanto, si no cambiamos nuestros patrones de consumo (respetando las vedas, por ejemplo) será obligatorio adoptar medidas drásticas de control natal para asegurar la sostenibilidad ambiental.

The climate mitigation gap: education and government recommendations miss the most effective individual actions (2017) ; autor: Seth Wynes

The Limits to Growth (1972); autor: Donella Meadows


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