A non-profit executive with a longstanding knowledge of world issues such as reproductive health, environmental sustainability, and global migration (emigration and immigration), William “Bill” Ryerson is the chairman and chief executive officer of the Population Institute. As the head of the international NGO, Bill Ryerson works to stabilize population growth worldwide and establish sustainable use of the world’s resources.
The Population Institute sponsors a broad range of programs, including the Sustainable World Initiative. By the 1980s, human activity reached 100 percent of the earth’s capacity of natural resources. Since then, that number has grown to approximately 140 percent, making continued human activity unsustainable at its current levels. In addition to decreasing our ability to raise living standards for at-risk populations in developing countries, the global “overshoot” threatens the viability of ecosystems across the globe.
To counteract this trend, the Population Institute educates the public and the media about a wide variety of population and sustainability issues. The Sustainable World Initiative focuses on areas that have the greatest impact on vulnerable populations, such as loss of biodiversity and water shortages. The initiative also works with economists to forecast the effects of continued population growth.