The human population has been up to the year 1850, when the overall population on the planet could amount to around 1 billion individuals. But everything changed with the Industrial Revolution: as machines could take some of the workload the people needed to undergo, mass food production was a soon-to-be-achieved goal.
Working machines meant that people could work a little less, more food meant that more people could eat. In short, we achieved an extra degree of comfort which ultimately lead to reproduction. Today, the globe’s population totals 7.3 billion people.
In 1850 years or even more, we only managed to raise a population of 1 billion, but in the last 200 years we managed to multiply it by more than 7. Now while a lot of people might think that we are practically doing our job to enhance the survival of the species, others might think that there is some sort of punishment on the way. We might have gone too far.
The UN is of a different opinion, however. According to their predictions, the globe might reach a stable population within this century. This does not mean that the numbers will decline. On the contrary, we are expected to have around 9.7 billion people on Earth by the end of 2050 and 11.2 billion by the end of 2100.
But fertility rate is also something that we need to take into account: people all over the world are having fewer babies every year. If this goes on, the population will eventually reach a stable number. The UN specialists are estimating that there is a 23 percent chance of this happening by the year 2100.
One might say that the decline in child fertility is quite alarming. Every European country, alongside many other countries that amount to around 83 in total, have fertility below the replacement rate. Another 48 countries are expected to have their population decreased by the year 2050.
If we calculate, this leaves about 10 percent of the world’s population with positive fertility rates. But this population is situated in Africa, a region with pre-industrialized fertility rates in which women have 5 or even 6 babies.
But the UN is noticing that Africa’s fertility rate is also decreasing slowly. UN predicts that only Mali, Somalia and Niger will be the countries with good fertility rate by the end of the next decade.
In the end, it seems that the world is growing some kind of “self-consciousness” about its population and it is beginning to slow the process down. While there is a long way to go before we reach the year 2100, we might be able to see if the UN predicted the following 10 to 30 years correcntly.
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