Video: Earth Day 2014 - Let's choose sustainable immigration

Article publisher: 
Progressives for Immigration Reform
Article date: 
22 April 2014
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

Since its inception in 1970, Earth Day has been an opportunity to bring global awareness to the fragility of our environment and the urgent need to take protective measures to sustain it. Celebrating its 44th year, Earth Day has helped galvanize over one billion people in 192 countries who participate in year-round advocacy, education, public policy and consumer campaigns to protect the environment.

Environmental campaigns have spanned issues ranging from climate change and overpopulation to clean water and saving endangered species. Yet, in the one area that can have the most impact on our nation's habitats with the least amount of effort and cost, there seems to be steadfast determination among many of our politicians to move in the opposite direction, making things worse for succeeding generations of Americans.

The key environmental issue is that of immigration and how the process should be reformed. One kind of reform attempts to address problems with immigration policy, perhaps by streamlining bureaucratic processes to make it easier for more immigrants to enter and stay here. Another kind of reform denies that our nation even has the right to regulate who should be allowed to reside here and in what numbers. This viewpoint suggests that a historically "welcoming" nation with such vast natural resources, wealth and opportunity should be open to all - and that morality demands it be so.

Ignored in most of the political wrangling about immigration reform is that continually raising the numbers of immigrants - whether to do low-paying menial work or high-paying skilled work - has consequences too compelling to ignore. Some of the effects of mass immigration include putting more strain on scarce water resources, diminishing crop yields, creating even more demand for energy, causing more pollution, driving more wildlife from their habitats, and replacing more open spaces with shopping malls.

At some point the carrying capacity of the nation will begin to buckle under the stress of immigration induced overpopulation. By the end of this century we could be looking at a population of 1 billion. What do we get for this price?

The promises are familiar... an economic renaissance, rekindled innovation, community revitalization, more jobs, more investment, a way to salvage the Social Security system. If all the promises come true, it will drive us into yet another cycle of problems that politicians will say can only be solved with more immigration - this for a nation that is already the world's third most populous behind China and India.

With one of the highest population growth rates in the developed world, we see the diminishing returns already piling up: stagnant wage growth, high unemployment rates, public school systems with very high student-to-teacher ratios, high incarceration rates, and government assistance programs so heavily utilized that severe cuts will be needed to keep them on life support.

Is this what becomes of the American Dream - pursuit of economic growth at any cost with vastly diminishing returns and greater harm to the environment?

Despite the success of Earth Day in building awareness of environmental issues, it must also include a discussion of immigration as one of the key issues because of its impact on so many other areas. Avoiding a free fall requires that we actively oppose Washington's fascination with runaway immigration and demand that any efforts to reform immigration include a sustainable future for the generations of Americans yet to come.


CAIRCO Research

Here is an interesting Global Carbon Footprint graphic