Big Shifts Are Close for World's Population

UN projects we'll hit 8B in months, with India on track to overtake China as No. 1 next year
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 11, 2022 8:31 AM CDT
World Population to Reach a Milestone in November
People wait to board trains at Lokmanya Tilak Terminus in Mumbai, India. The UN says India will likely surpass China in population next year.   (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

A new UN report on Monday—aka World Population Day—sees some major milestones on the horizon, including a pending shift for the title of most populous nation. Some of the nuggets highlighted, including in coverage at Quartz and the Hindu:

  • Overall: The world's population is expected to reach 8 billion in mid-November. The UN projects the figure to reach 8.5 billion in 2030, 9.7 billion in 2050, and 10.4 billion in the 2080s, where it would remain until 2100.
  • No. 1: India is expected to surpass China as the world's most populous nation in 2023. The UN puts India's current figure at 1.412 billion, just shy of China's 1.426 billion. (The latest US census numbers put the US population at 331 million, a distant No. 3 on the world list.)

  • Eight nations: The UN predicts more than half of the world's population increase through 2050 will occur in just eight nations—the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Tanzania.
  • Mortality: One factor in the rising population is that people are living longer. The UN says life expectancy rose to 72.8 years in 2019, up about nine years from 1990. The figure is expected to rise to 77.2 years in 2050.
(More world population stories.)

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