As I read this interesting piece (cached in comments in case the link above dies), which starts out concentrating on the natalist reaction to declining birthrates and the causes of the declines, it seemed that a particular contributor to the decline in birthrates had been ignored, that being the likely state of the world in which children born today will live, as perceived by prospective parents.
I wonder how many prospective parents think about the sort of world their children will live in? Maybe it's very small, and maybe that's what renders the question unimportant from the perspective of the piece's author.
Of those prospective parents who do think about the world their children will inherit, some will develop a dark outlook and tend not to breed, possibly out of projected love for the child that might have been. Others will agree that the globe's human population of 6 or 7 billion, trending towards 9 or 13 billion, is unsustainable and needs to drop drastically.
I am squarely with the much-maligned Paul Ehrlich.
Paul Ehrlich, the Stanford scientist who warned us about the “population bomb” in the 1960s, is more certain than ever that the human race is catastrophically straining the planet. “It’s insane to consider low birthrate as a crisis,” he told me. “Basically every person I know in my section of the National Academy of Sciences thinks it’s wonderful that rich countries are starting to shrink their populations to sustainable levels. We have to do that because we’re wrecking our life-support systems.”