For the first time in modern history, the world’s population is expected to virtually stop growing by the end of this century, due in large part to falling global fertility rates, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of new data from the United Nations.
By 2100, the world’s population is projected to reach approximately 10.9 billion, with annual growth of less than 0.1% – a steep decline from the current rate. Between 1950 and today, the world’s population grew between 1% and 2% each year, with the number of people rising from 2.5 billion to more than 7.7 billion.
Here are 11 key takeaways from the UN’s “World Population Prospects 2019”:
1The global fertility rate is expected to be 1.9 births per woman by 2100, down from 2.5 today. The rate is projected to fall below the replacement fertility rate (2.1 births per woman) by 2070. The replacement fertility rate is the number of births per woman needed to maintain a population’s size.
2The world’s median age is expected to increase to 42 in 2100, up from the current 31 – and from 24 in 1950. Between 2020 and 2100, the number of people ages 80 and older is expected to increase from 146 million to 881 million. Starting in 2073, there are projected to be more people ages 65 and older than under age 15 – the first time this will be the case. Contributing factors to the rise in the median age are the increase in life expectancy and falling fertility rates.