MY thoughts on what we should be doing to ensure a reasonable future omitted one important ‘commandment’, the number of children each couple produces, as this could help control the rate at which the climate changes in the future.

It’s daunting that the world population is increasing by a million every five days, that’s 220,000 every day! It means we add another Germany every year, and it’s more than our UK total of around 67 million.

There’s a strong argument for limiting family size to two children per couple because then the population begins to shrink as not all of them live to produce their own offspring. There are also a considerable number of adults who do not chose parenthood or just have one child.

It’s only in the last century that the now medically competent western industrial world has brought its birthrate level down. My mother was one of 15 children with only seven living beyond childhood – a typical feature of the still developing world.

Thus while the UK birth rate is now 1.8, the USA 1.9, Germany 1.4, Spain and Poland 1.3, the top African countries are over 7.0 with some twenty more at 5.0 plus. As expected China is only 1.6 whereas India is 2.4.

There are a number of significant problems associated with this birth rate reduction in the developed world because of long lived elderly populations needing support from declining numbers of young working people.

One answer is to invite in a work force from developing countries but some folk perceive that as a threat to their way of life and are keen to see strong border controls in place..

However there’s a real positive side to fewer people – less CO2 and slower climate change, so the priority must be helping the African countries develop strong economies, now, not in the future.