One of the most ominous events of modern history is quietly unfolding.  

With this post, I introduce to my readers a fascinating – and chilling – story.

The presentation described below may change the way you think about the human family, and about economics, forever.

The term “nuclear winter,” popularized in the 1980s, alluded to the catastrophic environmental impact of a nuclear war.  In the material that follows, we are presented with the specter of a “demographic winter,” the consequences of which could be equally devastating.

The term ‘demographic winter’ refers to what happens when human populations become critically unbalanced – with too few children being born, while the older members of society live longer. The effects amount to much more than just numbers.

Social science and economics converge to declare a looming demographic winter which threatens to have catastrophic social and economic consequences.  The financial crash of 2008 was only the beginning…

A striking new film, Demographic Winter: The Decline Of the Human Family, explores the devastating economic and social consequences of family decline and plummeting birthrates worldwide. In the film, scholars from varied backgrounds give economic, social scientific, demographic and historic context to population decline and the role families play in the strength and stability of society.

These experts show how development of the human capital critical to all nations is more dependent upon the families from which they are derived than upon any other institution.

Demographic Winter reveals how, contrary to widely-held myth, birthrates have been falling dramatically for over 40 years, and how much of the world now has birthrates well below replacement levels. Several countries have already begun to depopulate, and will increasingly feel the destabilization of their economies – and numerous others will soon follow.

The population of the world, scholars tell us, particularly in developing countries, is aging. The ‘baby boom’ generation is reaching retirement and will need to be supported by the generations that succeeded it, each of which has had fewer and fewer children. This means there will be fewer and fewer workers paying into the social security, medical and welfare systems of the world.

Of the 10 countries with the lowest birthrates, 9 are in Europe. Overall, the European fertility rate is 1.3, well below replacement level.  No European nation has a replacement-level birthrate.

All of the factors that are leading Europe into the depths of demographic winter are present in the United States as well…

The following three-minute trailer provides a good feel for the style and tone of this unusual documentary production.

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A two-part version of this documentary, The New Economic Reality: Demographic Winter, can be viewed on demand at the web site of BYUtv.  Each of the two episodes is one hour in length, but most of the subject matter can be absorbed from the first episode.

Selected portions of an earlier, somewhat harder-hitting 50-minute version of Demographic Winter is available for viewing on my resource pages.

A large amount of additional material about this subject is available at the producers’ website,

“The population bomb [idea] was popularized by non-demographers and by the press back in the 70’s… real demographers, even back then, knew this [depopulated] world was coming…” (Philip Longman)