Far from showering financial booty on new mothers and thereby rewarding greenhouse-unfriendly behaviour, a baby levy in the form of a carbon tax should apply, in line with the polluter pays principle.
The professor is making this suggestion despite the fact that Australia has a fertility rate of 1.8, which is well below replacement level.
Nor is he alone in expressing such views. Dr Egger, the director of the Centre for Health Promotion and Research in Sydney has declared his support for Professor Walters. There is a list here of others who have advocated radical measures against human populations, including a Melbourne neuroscientist, Dr John Reid, who said last year that:
[one] human way to reduce the population might be to put something in the water, a virus that would be specific to the human reproductive system and would make a substantial proportion of the population infertile. Perhaps a virus that would knock out the genes that produce certain hormones necessary for conception.
I should say that I'm someone who loves nature and has chosen to live close to the countryside. Ordinarily, therefore, I would support efforts to preserve the environment.
But not when the movement is aimed at a power grab and not when it becomes a vehicle for misanthropes.