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Toward Negative Population Growth: Cutting legal Immigration by Four-Fifths

Negative Population Growth

This is the gold standard of immigration comment, as it offers a thorough and factual analysis of the problem and also identifies specific remedies required for its solution.

Executive Summary

Mass immigration, whether through established or extra-legal channels, has by default become the nation’s de facto population policy.  In 2005, new immigrants (legal and illegal) plus births to immigrants accounted for about 2.3 million people – more than 60 percent of America’s average annual population growth at the time. In 2008, studies projected that immigration (legal, illegal, and the children of immigrants) would be responsible for 82 percent of U.S. population growth between 2005 and 2050. And in 2013, the Census Bureau projected that by mid-century, international migration would become the principle driver of America’s population growth – a first since at least 1850.  

While  Washington  debates  the  immigrants’  skills,  status  and  provenance,  their  environmental impact is the same:  immigrants and their children become part of the population base that intensifies the  nation’s  depletion  of  resources  and  environmental  stress.    Washington  has  from  time  to  time looked at the environmental effects of mass immigration in hearings and special commissions, but has given them no weight in their ultimate immigration choices.  In 2013, as in 2006, Congress and the President were considering so-called “reform” legislation – laws that potentially would double annual immigration rates.  Most of Washington’s consideration of the population effects has been not the environmental risks, but of the supposedly beneficial potential for boosting economic growth.

Current  immigration  numbers  are  excessive,  if  the  U.S.  is  ever  to  reduce  its  population  to  an environmentally-sustainable size.  NPG believes that this goal can only be met if illegal immigration is reduced to near zero, and legal immigration is reduced by four-fifths – to about 200,000 yearly. Such  reductions  cannot  be  realized  without  serious  changes:    immediate  enforcement  of  existing immigration  laws,  mandatory  E-Verify  for  all  employers,  elimination  of  “anchor  baby”  policies, and deep cuts in family chain migration.  Importation of family members, both immediate and more distant,  accounts  for  nearly  two-thirds  of  all  legal  entries. The  proposed  200,000  allotted  visas would satisfy core national labor interests in rare and essential skills, as well as humanitarian relief.

The U.S. has accepted nearly 80 million documented immigrants since 1820. Without guilt, our nation can now be generous to the world in new ways:  by slowing our profligate consumption and waste dumping, by remaining a major food exporter, and by curbing our intense competition for world energy supplies.

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