Here’s a terrifying population growth stat

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From here:

Sub-Sahara Africa’s population boom is one of the main reasons for optimism about the continent’s economic growth potential. But that doesn’t come without major challenges. Forty-eight countries classified by the UN as “least developed countries” are expected to double in population size by 2050; 33 countries, most of them falling within this category, will triple in size by 2100.

Er. Then there’s this:

African Population Growth Expected Until 2050

Nigeria is No. 1 — by 2050, it will have more people than the United States. That’s troubling because:

As a result, Nigeria could enjoy the so-called “demographic dividend,” provided that there are enough jobs to absorb the working-age population and sufficient investment in young people’s development, the UN notes. According to the last poverty survey released in 2012 by the government, some 61% of Nigerians lived on less than a dollar a day in 2010.

I do sometimes think that Africa in about 250 years might be what the U.S. is now economically, but there are stats out there that often make me think otherwise. These ones above are some of them.

By the way, in the next 35 years or so, it looks like Asia’s share of global population will drop, Africa’s will rise (and how!), Europe’s will drop, and the U.S. will essentially stay the same:

Continent Population Growth and Share



Ted Bauer


  1. I was thinking about this last week while on a road trip. There is a lot of data to suggest that the world is running out of resources and land compared to projected population growth. But, there seems to be a ton of undeveloped land everywhere (in the US). At least anecdotally, when I simply look around, it seems like we could at least provide space for double the population if we really wanted to…good, bad, or indifferent. Even densely populated states like New Jersey have many acres of forests and parks — and I’m not even considering wildlife preserve areas. Maybe I shouldn’t believe my lying eyes.

    • I think about that, but then I think … maybe we shouldn’t do anything to that land! Or … “Could we do anything, or is infrastructure too far behind?” I don’t really know because I’m not super-intelligent, but … I generally agree with you.

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