In the 1960s, fears of overpopulation sparked campaigns for population control. But whatever became of the population bomb?
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In partnership with Pulitzer Center

Population Bomb: The Dire Prediction That Fell Flat

Produced by Kit Roane Sarah Weiser

In 1968, the release of Paul Ehrlich’s best-selling book The Population Bomb and his multiple appearances on the “Tonight Show” helped spread fears that our planet could not sustain itself. Population concerns were already percolating, and Americans soon flocked to Ehrlich’s movement, Zero Population Growth, whose mantra on children was “stop at two.”

While many of his forecasts did not come true, they left a legacy that is still with us today. In the end, the story of The Population Bomb sheds a fascinating light on the dangers of prediction and the adaptability of the human race.

This video was supported in part by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

Transcript

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