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Ted Turner told an overflow crowd Wednesday that the biggest problem in this world is too many people.

"I'm not talking about getting rid of anybody here," he told the nearly 400 men and women at the Strand Union Building. "I had five children myself.

"But one out of four people in the world don't get enough to eat or have access to good water. It's not reasonable to expect we'll be able to continue to live so high on the hog when we're surrounded by so many starving hoards. The people who want to be isolationists are really kidding themselves," he said.

The billionaire entrepreneur said environmental worries were among the reasons he started raising bison on a ranch south of Bozeman he wanted to find profitable, less damaging alternatives to intensive agriculture.

"When I got here, bison cow calf pairs were selling for $850, and now they're selling about $2,000 a pair," he told an audience member who doubted bison were as profitable as cattle. "Write the Flying D ranch office and I'll send you my financial statements."

Turner said he also put $125 million of his own money into a foundation to support environmental and population control efforts in the U.S. and abroad. The endowment spends about $6 million a year on projects designed to lower the world's population from the present six billion people to two billion or less.

"About all you can really do is think globally and act locally," he said.

If governments spent close to as much money on ways to improve standards of living as they did on nuclear weapons, the population problem would be solved by now, Turner said.

Nevertheless, certain types of growth still get Turner's business juices flowing, said Turner, who was delivering the first in a series of lectures sponsored by the MSU business school. He recently arranged the sale of his media empire because he couldn't grow enough.

"One of the reasons I'm selling to Time Warner is I couldn't find capital fast enough to keep up with the competition," he said. "Finding access to capital is one of the trickiest things in business."

Turner apologized for concentrating on global problems instead of business topics in his speech.

"It would be much nicer to talk about how to make a lot of money," he said. "But I figured somebody had to worry and I figured that somebody would have to be me. I'm a self appointed global worrier."

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