Population in 2300 Could
Stabilize at 9 Billion, UN Estimates
The world's population three centuries from now will stabilize at
9 billion if fertility levels continue their decline, particularly
in the developing world, but could also top more than 1.3 trillion
if they remain unchanged from current rates, according to statistics
released by the United Nations.
According to "medium"-level projections, women in every
country will each have about two children in the decades to come,
raising the world population from its current 6.4 billion to 9 billion
in 2300, the UN's Population Division said.
But even small variations in these forecasts will have enormous impacts
in the long term. As little as one-quarter of a child under the two-child
norm, or one-quarter of a child above the norm, would result in world
populations ranging from 2.3 billion to 36.4 billion.
If fertility levels remain unchanged at today's levels, however, world
population would rise to 44 billion in 2100, 244 billion persons in
2150 and 1.34 trillion in 2300, according to the Division's new report,
World Population to 2300. The UN said this clearly indicates that
"current high fertility levels cannot continue over the long
Given progress in extending life expectancy, the UN said, people could
expect, on average, to live more than 95 years by 2300. Japan, which
is the global leader in life expectancy today, is projected to have
a life expectancy of more than 106 years by 2300.
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