World Population Awareness


August 19, 2015



May 1998, Atlantic Monthly   By: Bill Mckibben

If fertility remained at current levels, the population would reach the absurd figure of 296 billion in just 150 years. Even if it dropped to 2.5 children per woman and then stopped falling, the population would still reach 28 billion. doclink

December 28, 1998, from the Germany World Population Fund

1/3 of the population growth in the world is the result of incidental or unwanted pregnancies. doclink

December 28, 1998, from the Germany World Population Fund

1/3 of the population growth in the world is the result of incidental or unwanted pregnancies. doclink

Investment in Voluntary Family Planning Programmes: Benefits and Cost-saving Effects (Fact Sheet)

June 18, 2013

This is a well-done fact sheet with many persuasive population facts that can be used for tabling or persuading policy makers.

Here are some of the facts from the factsheet:

• There are an estimated 222 million women in developing countries with an unmet need for modern contraception.

• Worldwide only 57.4% of women aged 15-49 who are married or in a union are using modern contraception, and this figure falls to only 31.0% in the least developed countries

• Growth is expected to be most rapid in the 49 least developed countries, which are projected to double in size from around 900 million inhabitants in 2013 to 1.8 billion in 2050.

• The population of Africa is expected to more than double by mid-century, increasing from today's 1.1 billion and potentially reaching 4.2 billion by 2100.

• Niger has one of the highest population growth rate in the world (currently 4.0% a year) and the highest fertility rate in the world (with an average of 7.8 babies born to every woman between 2010 and 2015) also has one of the lowest rates of modern contraceptive use (only 8.7% among women of reproductive age who are married or in a union).

• 80 million unintended pregnancies occur every year in developing countries, with women with an unmet need for modern contraception accounting for 79% of these unintended pregnancies.

• Worldwide an estimated 41% of pregnancies are unintended5 and over one in five of all births result from unintended pregnancies.

Fulfilling the unmet need for modern contraception in developing countries would each year:

• Save the lives of 79,000 women from pregnancy-related deaths (in addition to the 118,000 maternal deaths averted by current modern contraceptive use)

• Save the lives of 1.1 million infants that would die before the age of 1 (in addition to the 1.8 million infant deaths averted by current use)

• Avert 54 million unintended pregnancies (which would represent a decline by two-thirds and is in addition to the 218 million averted currently)

• Avert 26 million abortions, including 16 million fewer unsafe procedures (in addition to the 138 million abortions currently averted, 40 million of them unsafe)

• Avert 7 million miscarriages (in addition to the 25 million averted currently) • Avert 21 million unplanned births (in addition to the 55 million averted currently). doclink

World Population Milestones

Population (in billions) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Year 1804 1927 1959 1974 1987 1999 2011 2023
Elapsed - 123 33 14 13 12 13 15+

July 1999, ZPG

One billion teenagers are just entering their reproductive years - The largest "youthquake" ever. The world is growing by more than 76 million people a year. At the current rate of growth, even accounting for a continual decrease in the growth rate, the world population is headed for double digits within 50 years. Every 20 minutes, the world adds another 3,500 human lives but loses one or more entire species of animal or plant life - at least 27,000 species per year. doclink

1999, UNFPA

World population growth peaked at about 2% per year in the early 1960s. Latest population figures indicate that the rate of growth has slowed to 1.33% annually, equivalent to 78 million people a year. doclink

September 1999, New York Times

World Population Doubles in Last 40 years The highest world population growth rate was 2.04% in the late 1960's. This year, it is about 1.31%. doclink