- "If people don't have more children, civilization is going to crumble, mark my words," said Elon Musk.
- Musk was responding to a question about how the Tesla Bot could solve some labor issues.
- The global birthrate has been steadily declining since the 1960s, according to the World Bank.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk said there are "not enough people," which could threaten human civilization.
"I think one of the biggest risks to civilization is the low birth rate and the rapidly declining birthrate," said the father of six at the Wall Street Journal's annual CEO Council.
"And yet, so many people, including smart people, think that there are too many people in the world and think that the population is growing out of control. It's completely the opposite. Please look at the numbers — if people don't have more children, civilization is going to crumble, mark my words," he said.
Musk was responding to a question about how the Tesla Bot could solve some labor issues. The Tesla Bot is Musk's planned "humanoid robot" that he says will be built using Tesla's self-driving car artificial intelligence. The Bot, said Musk during a Tesla AI event in August, would be capable of deadlifting up to 150 pounds and traveling at around 5 m.p.h.
Musk told the CEO Council the Tesla Bot could be a "generalized substitute for human labor over time."
According to the World Bank, the global birthrate has been steadily declining since 1960,
Musk also responded to the issue of aging at the same event, saying he doesn't think people should "try to live for a super long time."
"I think it is important for us to die because most of the times, people don't change their mind, they just die. If they live forever, then we might become a very ossified society where new ideas cannot succeed," he said.
"I'm not poking fun at aging. I just am saying if we've got people in very important positions that have to make decisions that are critical to the security of the country, then they need to have sufficient presence of mind and cognitive ability to make those decisions well — because the whole country is depending on them," Musk added.
Last week, he suggested on Twitter that anyone over 70 years old should be barred from running for political office.
—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 2, 2021
He elaborated on this in a reply on Twitter today.
—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 7, 2021