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Thursday, February 2, 2023

World Population Touches 8 Million Mark, 1 Billion Surge in Just 11 Years

In previous years, the UN has selected babies to represent the fifth, sixth, and seven-billionth children

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INDIA: The United Nations recently announced that the world’s population has hit 8 billion. The world population increased in a time span of just 11 years. It indicates that population density is growing steadily in a relatively short period.

Following a huge surge in the second half of the 20th century, population growth may now steadily begin to decline as the UN predicts that it could take up to 15 years to cross 9 billion and not until 2080 to reach the 10 billion mark.

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It is tough to evaluate the number of people in the world accurately, but the UN admits its sums could be out by a year or two.

But November 15 is its best estimate for the eight billion thresholds to be crossed.

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In previous years, the UN has selected babies to represent the fifth, sixth, and seven-billionth children.

Among them, the five-billionth child was born in July 1987, with flashing cameras and besuited politicians hovering over his exhausted mother, just a few minutes after his birth. 

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Matej Gaspar was christened the world’s five billionth baby on July 11.

Since then, three billion people have been inducted into the global community, and by the next 35 years, the globe could see a rise of only two billion- and then the population growth is likely to decline steadily.

Meanwhile, the world’s seven-billionth baby, 11-year-old Bangladeshi girl Sadia Sultana Oishi, was born into a low-income Dhaka family, which had hope for a boy but was blessed with three hardworking girls. 

Oishee was born one minute past midnight and was greeted by a TV crew and local officials, stumbling to catch a glimpse of the world’s seven billionth baby. 

Since Oishee’s birth, another 17 million people have been added to Bangladesh’s surging population.

This growth is a great medical success story. Still, the rate at which the population multiplies in Bangladesh has faced a major setback in recent years due to the country’s focus on education. In 1980, the average woman would have more than six children; now, it is less than two. 

The UN predicts the global population will peak in the 2080s at 10.4 billion, but other projection bodies like the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) and IIASA-Wittgenstein Centre in Vienna suggest the peak will happen sooner, between 2060 and 2070, at less than 10 billion.

But these are just predictions, and population demographers need clarification on the world’s next moves.

There are countless threats of debilitating pandemics and epidemics in the world, doubled with the burden of staggering drops in fertility rates, as people choose to have smaller families due to surging inflation and lack of healthcare.

Demographers were shocked when the number of children born per woman in South Korea dropped to an average of 0.81.

In Bosnia-Herzegovina, one of the most rapidly declining populations in the world, 23-year-old Adnan Mevic, the world’s six-billionth individual, thinks about this a lot.

“There is going to be nobody left to pay for pensions for retired people,” he said in an interview. “All the young people will be gone.”

Also Read: Nigeria’s Population To Hit 402 Million by 2050

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