One Planet, One Child Billboard Campaign
$15,775 raised
53% of $30k goal
149 contributors
184 Days running

Continue and expand nationwide a billboard campaign creating broader public awareness that the world is overpopulated, that the problem is solvable, and the solution is to freely choose smaller families. 

The Billboard Campaign (what we’ll do and where):

In Phase One we met our $15,000 goal to fund three very high profile billboards for one month in Minneapolis and Denver. Those billboards were up from early March through mid-April, thanks to pledges from over 100 visionary contributors! We’ve revised the crowdfunding campaign now to run year-round. The pandemic is temporarily stalling our plans, so we may place these ads in other venues - online or newspapers, for example. Billboards will make sense again. Meanwhile, your contributions going forward will fund continued advertising with this positive message. You can fund, or raise money to fund, a billboard in your community. See the Adopt a Billboard perk.

We’re putting simple, loving, small-family messages on these billboards.  Here’s one that ran in Minneapolis during Phase One:

About the Perks:

(After you select "Contribute," you can scroll past the perks to opt for donating w/o claiming a perk, should you desire.)

In addition to solving overpopulation, we also need to rein in our overconsumption, so we're not keen on offering swag. But the swag we're offering is actually part of the campaign. Display these proudly to spread the word and start conversations about overpopulation and its humane solution! If you won't use them, please decline the perks and avoid the waste. We've done our best to source these as responsibly as possible.


Here are the details:

The Problem:

We’re facing a maelstrom of serious environmental crises, including climate disruption, species extinction, deforestation, fresh water shortages, and fertile soil depletion. The sheer size of the human enterprise is a major, root cause of all these. We’ve simply outgrown the planet. Smarter, more sustainable practices are a necessary part of the solution, but we’ll never solve these crises over the long term without also scaling back the size of our population. We’ve too long ignored population’s role in addressing these issues. It’s time we alert and educate people about the small family solution.

 Graph shows matching trajectories for human population and CO2 emissions

Why We Haven’t Solved It:

Journalists, elected officials and everyday people have long avoided the subject. As a result, many are unaware there is an overpopulation crisis. Because of the silence about this subject, there are many misconceptions and misassumptions. These, too, have been hindering informed conversations and news coverage. They add to the discomfort some feel about addressing this critical concern.

Every parent wants their child to live a decent life. That can't happen if we don't break the silence. Addressing this issue is the key to a better future.

An Ethical and Loving Solution:

We’ve demonstrated the solution to this problem. Over the past 60 years we’ve voluntarily moved toward smaller and smaller families. The global average fertility rate has come down from 5 in 1960 to less than 2.5 today. But continuing that trend, world population would still keep growing for 80 years, reaching nearly 11 billion by the turn of the century. So we need to accelerate what we’ve been doing.

If we could flip a switch and instantly drop the global fertility rate to 1.0 and keep it there, instead of 11 billion in 2100, we’d be closer to 4 billion and on our way to 3.One child families graph showing population below 3 billion before 2200

We’ve shown there’s no need for draconian laws (they weren’t needed for us to more than cut birth rates in half). Our solution is to ALERT, CELEBRATE and INSPIRE. We simply need to make sure everyone knows we’ve outgrown the planet. We need to enable young couples to make informed decisions and inspire them to make informed decisions and choose smaller families.

The Billboard Campaign (what we’ll do and where):

Billboards have proven to be a very effective consciousness-raising technique to reach the masses. Drivers, passengers, riders and pedestrians all see them. They don’t have to meet any special-interest algorithms, they don’t have to search or click. We’re going to put a simple, loving, small-family message on billboards.

After our first month’s run in Denver and Minneapolis, we’ll expand the campaign to other cities as contributions allow. If this project catches fire and attracts the kind of support warranted by this critical issue, we’ll be able to expand to other types of advertising, too (on bus stops, in malls, etc.)!


We developed and tested several designs. Here are two of the four designs that ran in Colorado:

And here are two of the four that ran in Minneapolis:

Who Do We Want to Reach?

  • Young adults 18 to 45 years of age (those who will make family size decisions) in the U.S. (since that's where we'll start with the first billboard, and yes, the U.S. needs to contract its population)
  • Journalists (whose reporting can better inform the public)
  • Pundits, commentators, show hosts, etc. (who can also help alert and educate the public)
  • Everyone who might be inspired to support small family size decisions, including via support for family planning programs 

How Can You Get Involved?

This campaign depends on you. First, we need you to pitch in and help fund the project. Just as important, we need you to tell your friends, family and colleagues about it. Forward our emails, follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and share our posts. If you really believe in the importance of this project,  register  to join our team and start fundraising for us ("Register" link is also at the top of this page).


Who Are We?

World Population Balance is a 501(c)3 non-profit founded over 25 years ago. We alert and educate that overpopulation is the root cause of resource depletion, species extinction, poverty, and climate change. Our mission is to chart a path for human civilization that – rather than causing greater misery – enables good lives on a healthy planet. We advocate and support a smaller, truly sustainable human population – through dramatic and voluntary reduction in birth rates. 

Key Messages:

  • Overpopulation is a problem that is solvable with smaller families.
  • Human numbers are the root cause of our most serious problems, including...
    • Climate change
    • Species Extinction
    • Deforestation
    • Water shortages
    • Fertile soil depletion
    • Air pollution
    • Resource scarcity
    • Unaffordable housing
    • Traffic congestion
  • Overpopulation is a problem in all parts of the world, including modern, industrialized nations like the U.S., Australia and many countries of Europe.
  • Choosing a smaller family is the #1 carbon footprint reducer.
  • One-child families have many benefits beyond environmental sustainability.
  • Solving overpopulation AND reducing overconsumption are the two essential solutions to our most serious environmental crises.

What This Is Not:

  • We’re not promoting any government required “one child policy.”
  • We’re not promoting “population control.”
  • We’re not promoting abortion.
  • We’re not targeting any specific group of people.
  • We're not dictating anyone's decision; we're helping people make an informed choice.

What This Is About:

  • This is about creating a better future for all - especially the children of the world.
  • We believe all the children of the world deserve a shot at living a decent life on a healthy planet, with clean air and water, abundant food and energy, and a habitable climate.
  • We respect the rights of couples, and women in particular, to choose when and whether or not to conceive children.
  • On an overpopulated planet, everyone around the world is well-served to embrace the small family solution - in the overdeveloped world, where consumption per person is so high, and in the developing world where birthrates are high.

Do You Have More Questions? Want to Learn More?

Endorsements & Statements of Support

Paul Ehrlich, President of the Center for Conservation Biology, Stanford University:
"I’m delighted there will be a billboard campaign attacking the most serious problem now facing humanity - overpopulation.  If there weren’t too many people, it would be much easier to solve the existential problems now facing civilization, including overconsumption, climate disruption, wildfire expansion, sea level rise, land degradation, loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services, global toxification, likelihood of nuclear war, novel plagues, and on and on.  Choosing one-child families (and childfree) to start the needed population SHRINKAGE is an essential first step, and in support of that step we need to give all women the same rights and opportunities as men, and all people of reproductive age free access to modern contraception.  We need a sustainable  population of a few billion people for a hundred thousand years, not an unsustainable 11 billion people for only a decade or so."

Mathis Wackernagel, Founder and President, Global Footprint Network:

Population numbers have been one of the most significant factors driving up ecological overshoot over the last decades. The numbers seem to move slowly, but consistently, so cumulatively over time, the impact is enormous. The good news is that many short term social benefits emerge from encouraging smaller families: higher educational achievements, better health – and all this is enabled by equal rights for men and women.

 With all these benefits, what’s holding us back? Encouraging and supporting smaller families is one of the most loving efforts we can make for present and future generations. Yet we need to overcome cultural stigmas. Celebrating one-child families is a wonderful initiative, and an important opportunity for us all to learn from. How can we make this proposition inviting and inspiring? I am eager to see the results."  

Sandra Kanck, President, Sustainable Population Australia:
"We cannot continue to allow population to grow unchecked with its terrible impact on other species. We don't have another planet to turn to if we over-run this one."


Population Institute Canada

William Ryerson, President, Population Media Center:

"Population Media Center has been working to role model the benefits of small family size decisions since 1998. We support the idea of the  One Planet, One Child Billboard Campaign  – namely, to share information and inspire couples to consider their family-size decisions in the context of global sustainability. It is our belief that the sooner population growth stops, and human numbers begin a natural decrease, the better positioned human civilization will be to lower our impacts on the natural world."

Laura Carroll, author of
Families of Two &
The Baby Matrix:
"This important campaign's focus on reaching a sustainable population by having smaller families also includes 'families of two' ~ those that make the childfree choice ~ Join me in supporting WPB to make this project a global endeavor!"

Maxine Trump, Director of the film, To Kid or Not to Kid:
“We fully support World Population Balance. Making the choice to have a small family is why I made the filmTo Kid Or Not To Kid. If I could put a billboard in my backyard I would. Great work."

Joshua Spodek PhD MBA, Host of the Leadership and the Environment podcast:

"We knew the dangers of overpopulation before I was born, but what could we do? A nanny state bringing government into the bedroom was a cure worse than the disease -- and alternatives seemed  worse. Then I learned the voluntary, non-coercive, educational, usually fun and playful practices that worked in Thailand, Mexico, Iran, and beyond. They increased abundance, stability, prosperity, and fun. Who doesn't want more fun?

Our problem isn't a lack of effective solutions but ignorance. I've never met a family with one child with any less love than bigger ones. Small families doesn't mean oppression. With education and awareness they mean a future of peace, stability, abundance, and fun."


Special thanks to filmmaker and educator Bruce Phillips, who coined the term, One Planet, One Child, some time ago. You can see his short film with this title at the World Population Balance YouTube Channel.


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$10 USD + shipping
One Planet, One Child Sticker
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Put this sticker on your auto, laptop, window or water bottle to spread awareness.
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One Planet, One Child Button
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Wear this proudly and start some conversations!
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One Planet, One Child Coffee Mug
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Start conversations at the office with this mug, or send one to your favorite newscaster, journalist, elected official or pundit.
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Reusable Chico One Planet, One Child Tote
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Shrinking our consumption is also critical, so use this bag instead of 1,000+ disposable or recyclable plastic grocery bags. Plus a button and sticker. Thoughtfully created from 100% Post-Consumer Recycled Plastic Bottles.
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$40 USD
Send a Mug to a Journalist
We’ll send a One Planet, One Child coffee mug to a TV host, anchor or other journalist of your choice. The mug should make it through their gatekeeper (everyone loves a freebie), and they may well be curious enough to check out the website.
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$50 USD + shipping
One Planet, One Child T-Shirt
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Ships Worldwide url on T-Shirt. Men's or Women's style T-shirts. We searched the world and found a small shop in Maine that understands our commitment to minimizing the footprint of these shirts. U.S. grown and sewn, certified organic cotton, unbleached. Water-based ink. Very durable, so you’ll be wearing this shirt for years. You'll select style and size in the checkout process. There may be a wait, depending on timing of your order and inventory of these special organic cotton shirts.
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Overdevelopment, Overpopulation, Overshoot Book
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Overdevelopment, Overpopulation, Overshoot coffee-table book with stunning, world-class photography and essays produced by Foundation for Deep Ecology. Thanks to Deep Ecology Foundation and Global Population Speakout for making this book available.
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One Planet, One Child Billboard in Your Community
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We’ll put one up ASAP in a major metro area of your choice. Smaller cities and rural areas subject to cost and availability. We’ll work with you to line up the best location and get a billboard up within weeks!
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Autographed Original Edition The Population Bomb
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Only 1 available, so don't wait to claim this. Famed Stanford Biologist Paul Ehrlich, who wrote this landmark book with wife, Anne, graciously provided this autographed copy in support of this project. Plus a button and a sticker.
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