World Population Could Peak Sooner Than Previously Estimated, Study Shows; Impact Of Pandemic On Birthrates Uncertain

New York Times: World Population Could Peak Decades Ahead of U.N. Forecast, Study Asserts
“United Nations demographers have been anticipating since last year that the world’s population may stop growing by 2100 as fertility rates decline, projecting a peak of 10.9 billion people by century’s end, compared with roughly 7.8 billion now. But a study published on Tuesday in The Lancet, the medical journal, has challenged that forecast, with major economic and political implications. The study asserted that the global population could peak at 9.7 billion by 2064 — nearly four decades earlier — and decline to 8.8 billion by 2100…” (Gladstone, 7/14).

Washington Post: Coronavirus baby boom or bust? How the pandemic is affecting birthrates worldwide.
“…With millions of people cut off from reproductive health care and stuck at home, some experts predicted that the crisis would create the conditions for a baby boom, at least in some countries. Other analysts predicted a baby bust, driven by economic and social instability. It’s still too early to say for sure, but birthrate trends suggest spikes in some parts of the world and declines in others. Broadly speaking, birthrates should continue to drop in many higher-income countries and climb in many poor and middle-income nations, where the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) projects that pandemic-driven disruptions in access to contraception could lead to millions of unplanned pregnancies…” (Berger, 7/15).

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