UN says world population will reach 9.8 billion in 2050

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India's population is expected to surpass China's in about seven years and Nigeria is projected to overtake the United States and become the third most populous country in the world shortly before 2050, a U.N. report said Wednesday.

The by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs' Population Division forecasts that the current world of nearly 7.6 billion will increase to 8.6 billion by 2030, 9.8 billion in 2050 and 11.2 billion in 2100.

It said roughly 83 million people are added to the world's population every year and the upward trend is expected to continue even with a continuing decline in , which have fallen steadily since the 1960s.

John Wilmoth, director of the Population Division, said at a news conference that the report includes information on the populations of 233 or areas of the world.

"The population in Africa is notable for its rapid rate of growth, and it is anticipated that over half of between now and 2050 will take place in that region," he said. "At the other extreme, it is expected that the population of Europe will, in fact, decline somewhat in the coming decades."

The U.N. agency forecasts that from now through 2050 half the world's population growth will be concentrated in just nine countries—India, Nigeria, Congo, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Tanzania, United States, Uganda and Indonesia. Those nations are listed in the order of their "expected contribution to total growth," the report said.

During the same period, it added, the populations of 26 African countries are expected to at least double.

Nigeria, currently the world's seventh largest country, has the fastest growing population of the 10 most populous countries worldwide, and the report projects it will surpass the U.S. shortly before mid-century.

The new projections also forecast that China, which currently has 1.4 billion inhabitants, will be replaced as the world's most populous country around 2024 by India, which now has 1.3 billion inhabitants.

The report, titled "The World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision," said fertility has been declining in nearly all regions in recent years.

Between 2010 and 2015, Wilmoth said, "the world's women had 2 1/2 births per woman over a lifetime—but this number varies widely around the world."

"Europe has the lowest fertility level, estimated at 1.6 births per woman in the most recent period, while Africa has the highest fertility, with around 4.7 births per woman," he said.

The report said birth rates in the 47 least developed countries remain relatively high, with population growth around 2.4 percent a year. While this rate is expected to slow significantly in the coming decades, the U.N. said the combined population of the 47 countries is projected to increase by 33 percent from roughly 1 billion now to 1.9 billion in 2050.

More and more countries now have fertility rates below the level of roughly 2.1 births per woman needed to replace the current generation, the report said. During the 2010-2015 period, fertility was below the replacement level in 83 countries comprising 46 percent of the world's population, it said.

The 10 most populous countries with low fertility levels are China, United States, Brazil, Russia, Japan, Vietnam, Germany, Iran, Thailand and United Kingdom, the report said.

In addition to slowing , low fertility levels lead to an older population, the report noted. It forecasts that the number of people aged 60 or above will more than double from the current 962 million to 2.1 billion in 2050 and more than triple to 3.1 billion in 2100.

A quarter of Europe's population is already aged 60 or over, and that share is projected to reach 35 percent in 2050 then remain around that level for the rest of the century, the report said.


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Jun 22, 2017
~33 years in the future is a very long time, with the way technology is growing!
I find it hard to believe anyone can see what's coming that far in the future.

Jun 22, 2017
By the end of the century we will be worrying about global population collapse - just like Europe and Japan now

Jun 22, 2017
By the end of the century we will be worrying about global population collapse - just like Europe and Japan now


Depends. Right now, many countries in Europe are doing fine.

Jun 22, 2017
By the end of the century we will be worrying about global population collapse - just like Europe and Japan now

Wow and I thought these people had no idea about the growth of technology and the implications that it implies about the unforeseen! This prophet can see 88 years in the future!

This press release and update is a terrible piece of propaganda. I have read the whole report. The most recent UN upwards correction of estimates is just 2 years old. Now the forecast for 2030 has been fixed by a 11% of growth assumption, leaving figures for 2010 left unchanged – ouch. The audience gets fooled by talking about a slowly sinking fertility rate, while all-time long in the last decades the absolute figures of annual population growth have been getting bigger, now close to 100 million. The arbitrarily optimistic and thus ignorant forecasts for 2050 and 2100 rely on the weird belief that shrinking fertility rates of countries would be a one-way trend. This fallacy has been disproven by now, as can be seen in many recent examples in Western countries.

Aug 04, 2017
"while all-time long in the last decades the absolute figures of annual population growth have been getting bigger, now close to 100 million"

No, they have not. The highest absolute annual population increases occurred in the late 1980s, peaking at nearly 93,000,000. The figure fell until around 2002 (about 78,000,000) then rose again until around 2013 (just over 84,000,000). This rise was clearly a consequence of women born in the 1980s and early 1990s reaching peak fertility ages. Annual absolute growth is now falling again, last year's figure being just over 83,000,000. See http://www.worldo...y-year/.

The recent rises in some Western countries have failed to move fertility rates above replacement level (approximately 2.1 births per woman), as can be seen here (with the apparent exception of the Faroes): https://en.wikipe...ty_rate.

Hi Nick, I would suggest that you ask the UN (who published the official figures) for their margin of error for historical data. Should you receive an answer, you will be shocked about it. A large part of the figures is based on individual countries' statistical offices data (guesses and estimates) from countries that don't operate a functional civil registry regime for births and deaths. Knowing that, also from prior work in an international organization being busy in that domain, I have more confidence in those statistics here: ow.ly/UDXV30eagmP As you can read over there the increase within the last year amounted to 104,995,010. No worry about the Western countries' replacement level, instead of reducing the overpopulation, Germany, USA etc. have more than enough replacement effects from migrant waves. Look at the absolute figures of 2016.

Aug 04, 2017
"while all-time long in the last decades the absolute figures of annual population growth have been getting bigger, now close to 100 million"

No, they have not. The highest absolute annual population increases occurred in the late 1980s, peaking at nearly 93,000,000. The figure fell until around 2002 (about 78,000,000) then rose again until around 2013 (just over 84,000,000). This rise was clearly a consequence of women born in the 1980s and early 1990s reaching peak fertility ages. Annual absolute growth is now falling again, last year's figure being just over 83,000,000. See http://www.worldo...y-year/.

The recent rises in some Western countries have failed to move fertility rates above replacement level (approximately 2.1 births per woman), as can be seen here (with the apparent exception of the Faroes): https://en.wikipe...ty_rate.

Aug 04, 2017
Apologies for the double post.

StudentofSpiritualTeaching,

Do you really expect me to take the word of a bunch of wackos claiming to get their figures from "JHWH Ptaah of Erra/ Plejaren" over the UN, the World Bank and other reputable bodies? I do urge everyone to follow StudentofSpiritualTeaching's link, so you can see just what their source is.

No, Nick. I invited you to ask the UN about their margin of error. Nobody should ever be asked to believe anything and anyone, as beliefs are the main source of our current problems on this planet. You are only invited to do your own work when exploring the reality. Whether you actually do that is your free choice. Calling someone wacko, without a plausible, rational reason is not compatible with logic.

Aug 08, 2017
"Calling someone wacko, without a plausible, rational reason is not compatible with logic"
Claiming to source your figures from "JHWH Ptaah of Erra/ Plejaren" is plausible and rational reason to call you a wacko. Of course you don't recognise this, because you're a wacko.

"I invited you to ask the UN about their margin of error."
For current population, they give an error range of 1-2%. Errors are likely to be somewhat greater further back. ANyone can read about their methodology here: http://www.un.org...ish.pdf.

Since you claim that I would be "shocked" by the UN's answer with respect to the margin of error on their historical figures, presumably you know what it is, and can cite a specific document. I predict that you won't,

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