The world’s population passed 8 billion this past Tuesday, a milestone for countries, both rich and poor. It took hundreds of thousands of years for the world population to reach 1 billion, but only a decade for the population to grow from 7 billion to 8 billion. While this is a reflection of advancements in health and access to resources, reaching this milestone also serves as a wake-up call.
This milestone is a reflection of the sudden spike in population over the last few decades. The United Nations population division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA reported that the world population is expected to grow to 10 billion over the next 60 years. While the population growth rate is slowing relative to the past, the U.N. still warns of challenges with pollution, food security, and housing will be significant.
A few other metrics have been recorded along with the 8 billion mark. The global life expectancy grew to almost 73 years, and is expected to hit 77 years by 2050. The U.N’s November brief also reported on the gender divide, with more men than women in the world today. However, this difference is expected to even out by 2050 as well. The U.N population report also considers the “8 billionth person” a reminder that global migration “will be the sole driver of population growth in high-income countries”.
This population milestone has been called “a testament to achievements in public health and medicine”, showing us the impact of modern society’s advancements.
Hi! My name is Vishnu Mano and I am an editor here at The City Voice. Apart from writing/editing articles, my hobbies include music, speech and debate, and coding.