Global Population Growing Despite Lower Fertility Rates

While some countries experience a baby boom, the birth rate in others is falling.

Global population levels are growing while fertility rates fall.
Getty Images/Caiaimage

Major population changes are currently taking place in various countries around the world.

There are now 91 countries — like Japan and many in Europe — that are not producing enough babies to maintain their populations, a new report called Baby Boom or Bust said. Meanwhile, 104 nations are experiencing a baby surplus, like India and in sub-Saharan Africa, according to U.S. News and World Report.

“These statistics represent both a ‘baby boom’ for some nations and a ‘baby bust’ for others,” Dr. Christopher Murray, senior author and director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, said in a press release.

Murray told U.S. News that there are three main factors that drive lower fertility rates:  education, access to birth control, reproductive services and health care and low infant mortality rates. In places lacking education, access to services and high infant mortality, fertility is going to be higher, driving a population increase.

Fertility rates are measurements representing the average number of children a woman will deliver in her lifetime. In richer countries, that number is less than two, on average. In poorer nations, it is above two.

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