Looking for the root cause
In November 1998, American voters passed
overwhelmingly approximately 200 state and local ballot initiatives
designed to contain sprawl. Citizens are concerned with growth run amok
and their communities becoming unrecognizable. The Sierra Club has made
curbing sprawl a national priority campaign.
The press, the Sierra Club
and the home-building industry all tout "smart growth" as the answer to
the problem. But this reincarnation of urban planning offers only
short-term palliatives, while the root cause -- uncontrolled population
growth -- goes unnoticed and unaddressed. The Sierra Club's Sprawl
literature, barely mentions population stabilization as
an essential component in the effort to curb sprawl. SUSPS finds this
omission appalling from one of the nation's most influential
In order to inform members, leaders, and the public about the role population growth plays in our everyday lives, SUSPS has supported population - sprawl resolutions, which have been passed by over 15 Sierra Club chapters over the course of the last year recommending that the Club include a realistic discussion about population growth as an intrinsic component of sprawl.
SUSPS has pressed the Sierra Club to include population in the Club's Sprawl campaign. Members and the public intuitively understand this crucial linkage and it is therefore important that Club materials acknowledge population growth as a contributing cause of sprawl.
To accomplish this goal, SUSPS qualified the following ballot question, which was voted on during the annual Sierra Club 2001 spring election.