Global population will grow from about 6.7 billion at present to some 7 billion in 2011, according to a report released Wednesday by a U.S. nonprofit research group.
Meanwhile, a staggering 97 percent of the world’s population growth over the next 40 years will happen in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Washington D.C.-based Population Reference Bureau said in its 2009 World Population Data Sheet.
In the developed world, it said, the United States and Canada will account for most of the population growth during that period — half from immigration and half from a natural population increase.
High fertility rates and a young population base in the developing world will fuel most of the growth, especially in Africa, where women often give birth to six or seven children over a lifetime, it said. The number is about two in the United States and 1.5 in Canada.
The report also estimated that India will become the world’s most populous nation at 1.7 billion in 2050, followed by China and the United States.