Earth Day Texas: Water, Population and Immigration

IMG_2785A group of us traveled to Dallas last week to participate in Earth Day Texas. For three full days we found a motivated and interested public concerned about the role of immigration in U.S. population growth and its implications for the global environment and our natural resource base. FAIR had a large booth full of useful materials and handouts that explore the connection between mass immigration, population growth and environmental degradation.

The late Senator Gaylord Nelson (D-Wis.), founder of Earth Day and staunch supporter of reducing immigration to conform to responsible demographic goals, would be shocked today to see so little discussion of this issue today.

That discussion is even more relevant now because of acute water shortages in key regions in the South and West. FAIR was fortunate to participate in Texas Earth Day this year.  Fortunate, I say, because there is an organized effort to stifle public understanding of this connection.  Why? Simple: organizations aligned with the Democratic Party in this country – organizations ostensibly dedicated to resource management, conservation and preservation — do not want either the population issue or the immigration issue discussed in the context of the environment. Can this be rational? Isn’t this an unethical compromise that sacrifices the core mission of these organizations?  Of course it is.

Most folks in Texas seemed to agree: Yes, immigration is inexorably a population/resource issue. FAIR was founded on the premise that population stabilization is in the public interest.  As we engaged over five hundred Texans over three days, we found that they understand the common sense need to reduce immigration for the sake of the environment.  Faced with water restrictions and the recognition that growing populations – mostly generated by high levels of foreign immigration –will increase water demand, most Texans would gladly support national immigration reductions.

We found a dehydrated state thirsting for – even impatient for – someone in a leadership position to connect the dots and take action.

About Author


Dan is the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s President after joining the organization in 1982. He has testified more than 50 times before Congress, and been cited in the media as "America's best-known immigration reformer." Dan has appeared on virtually every significant TV and radio news/talk program in America and, in addition to being a contributing editor to, has contributed commentaries to a vast number of print media outlets.


  1. avatar

    In the last years of his life, Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson said it was “phony” to dismiss the link between population growth in this country and immigration.

    Case in point would be the Sierra Club. In the late 1990s some members of Sierra wanted the club to reinstate it’s previous policy linking the issues. Although the Sierra Club has tried to rewrite the history of that time by saying they merely wanted the club to take no position on the issue, the fact is that the leadership charged that taking the position of immigration restriction was helping racists.

    Sierra Executive Director Carl Pope stated that it “would be perceived as assisting people whose motivations are racist”. A vote of the membership was held and the measure was defeated, and some members left to form the group Sierrans for Population Stabilization, which was immediately cast as racist.

    A couple months ago Huffington Post carried a blog about “the bizarre charge that California’s water crisis was caused by immigrants”. Nothing bizarre about the obvious fact that immigration has increased the population of that state and that puts more pressure on water supplies. Every extra person has an “environmental footprint”, meaning they consume a certain amount of natural resources. The only thing “bizarre” is that people can deny there’s a connection.