Global population is expected to rise from 8.5 billion in 2030 to a staggering 9.7 billion by 2050 as per figures projected in a latest UN Population Division report published recently. The findings are based on a study of demographic influences expected to alter population patterns in some of the more intensely inhabited countries around the world. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs publishes its projections on global population in its World Population Prospects series every two years. These projections and forecasts provide figures that are consistently employed throughout the United Nations organization.
Projections point to a radically altered global picture over the span of decades by methodically underlining key population trends ubiquitous among regions where an extensive surge in population is anticipated over the years. According to these statistics, Africa, currently sitting at a “2.55 percent” annual population growth is most likely to manifest astonishingly high patterns, accounting for more than half of the surge over the next three decades. Closely following and expected to contribute appreciably to the mix are Asia, North America and Latin America, the Caribbean, and Oceania. Conversely, in Europe, numbers are more likely to shrink owning to falling fertility rates evident across many European countries, a strikingly contrasting trend by comparison. Europe’s total population is likely to experience a significant drop from 738 million people now to 646 million by 2100.
According to recent projections, between 2015 and 2050, half of the world’s population growth is likely to be clustered around nine countries: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, United Republic of Tanzania, United States of America, Indonesia, and Uganda, projected according to their respective contributions to the overall growth. While India’s population is likely to exceed that of China by 2022, making it the largest country in the world, Nigeria is likewise expected to surpass the United States of America by 2050, at which point, six of the largest countries in the world in terms of population will hit the 300 million mark.
The United Nations had earlier released a similar report projecting the world population to exceed 12.3 billion by 2100. Although fertility rates around the world today may have somewhat plummeted when compared to previous years, an incessant surge in world population appears incontestably forthcoming if not utterly inevitable owing to a substantial improvement in universal life expectancy as well as continuously soaring fertility rates prevalent among the most impoverished countries of the world.
[Lead image via Spencer Platt, Getty Images.]