According to the most recent projections by the United Nations, the global population will rise from 7.6 billion to 11.2 billion people by 2100.
At this macro level, the global population is growing considerably – but at the micro level, the numbers are all over the map. It’s expected that some countries like Nigeria will see population numbers quadruple by 2100, while other places like China will see a decline by almost 40%.
This raises the question: how different do the regions of the world look in 80 years, in terms of population?
POPULATION BY REGION (1950-2100)
Today’s animation comes to us from geographer Simon Kuestenmacher who used this U.N. data to show how population by region is expected to change over the coming years.
The chart shows expansive population growth in Asia until about 2060, which is when the regional population will peak at roughly 5.3 billion. At this point, the continent will make up 51% of the global population.
In addition, Africa’s population is projected to continue to boom until 2100, at which point it will come close to passing Asia’s total. As we previously showed you, Africa will also be home to many of the world’s largest cities by this time.
FACTORS OF INFLUENCE
Although 83 million people are being added to the global population every year, this population growth differs greatly by region. As a result, it’s worth looking at two major factors to see why this is the case.
The first is the fertility rate, which has obvious implications on population growth. On a global basis, this rate (measured in births per woman) is close to 2.5, and by 2100 it will have dropped to 2.0.
However, as you’ll see in this next chart, which shows projected fertility rates, Africa is the only region that will still have high amounts of child births 30 years from now. This will be one major driver of the continent’s population boom.
Total Fertility in 2050 (Live births per woman)
The second measure that plays a big role in these projections is life expectancy. For each new person born, how long are they expected to live?
Until recently, the only countries that had a life expectancy that exceeded 80 years were in Western Europe, North America, and Oceania, with the notable exception of Japan. However, in the coming decades, even the world’s least developed countries will all be closing in on that same benchmark:
Life Expectancy in 2100 (Years at birth)
THE NEXT 30 YEARS
According to these same estimates, it is expected between 2017-2050 that half of all global population growth will be in just nine countries (in this order): India, Nigeria, DRC, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Tanzania, United States, Uganda, and Indonesia.
Over that duration of time, it’s also projected that the populations of 26 African countries will at least double.