Recognizing Dr. John Tanton: A Lifetime of Conservation, Immigration Reform Work

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By Fred Elbel

Fred is an internet marketing consultant and director of the Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform,

The writer's views are his own.

October 11, 2016

A leading conservationist, Dr. John H. Tanton is considered the founder of the modern immigration reform movement. Dr. Tanton has been dedicated throughout his life to preserving our natural environment and to addressing unsustainable U.S. population growth, a root cause of environmental problems.

John Tanton
Newsweek, 1989.

As an advocate for the environment, Dr. John Tanton founded the Petoskey, Michigan, regional Audubon Society, and worked with a number of environmental organizations. Tanton recognized early on that continued human population growth is a significant contributor to environmental problems in the U.S. He became involved with the Sierra Club Population Committee, and was President and board member of Zero Population Growth.

As immigration became the primary driving force behind unending U.S. population growth, Tanton founded FAIR, the Federation for American Immigration Reform. Tanton is pro-immigrant and pro-legal immigration, but at reduced, sustainable numbers, and has said:

“The stresses caused by population growth cannot be solved by international migration. They must be confronted by and within each individual nation. Fundamental to the concept of national rights and responsibilities is the duty of each nation to match its population with its political, social, and environmental resources, in both the short and the long term. No nation should exceed what the biologists call its ‘carrying capacity.’”

To learn more about Tanton and his work, view a video tribute here, and visit The Social Contract, which he publishes.


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