In Ethiopia, environmental activism might appear a little uncustomary to some. Health workers can be seen going door-to-door delivering pamphlets about restoring the country’s forest — and they might be handing out condoms while they’re at it.
The effort is part of Population Health Environment – Ethiopia Consortium’s (PHE) initiative to show residents the intractable link between overpopulation and its toll on the environment. The nation has experienced population growth and land depletion caused by drought but is now focused on reforestation efforts, which also includes family planning.
Access to voluntary birth control — which typically means pills, condoms and IUDs — to reduce the 40 percent of unintended pregnancies per year worldwide will cut our collective human carbon footprint, and an increasing number of countries are factoring this in to their climate change plans, experts point out.