Having done a bit of thinking on the topic and the meta-topic, it’s obvious to me that we should attempt to run a PDC working group regarding Aussie population policy next cycle (2018-2019). For all our explanations of why it hasn’t happened yet, OP is right in that we ought to have policy in this space.
Things to consider at a minimum:
- natural environmental carrying capacity looking forward over the next 50+ years (could eg CSIRO be commissioned to re-evaluate this every decade?)
- built environmental carrying capacity (i.e. if you want more residents you need to fund more (effficient/effective) infrastructure and services)
- How (1) & (2) relate to demographic trends (I.E. yes, we can take some net immigration because otherwise we’d decline, assuming we haven’t hit capacity yet)
- in many ways as far as the above is concerned a net gain is a net gain, so what proportion of the net immigrants should be voluntary and what proportion refugees?
- What if we’re already over capacity according to (1)?