July 11 is World Population Day and the emphasis is on celebrating our achievements and planning for the future.
To honor the day, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and partners launched the global movement, 7 Billion Actions, which invites online users to share individual stories of who they are and how they can make a difference in the world.
At 7billionactions.org, users can write a short poem or blurb, submit films, or remix the theme song of the movement, “United.” The song features a chorus in English and verses in Arabic, Lingala (spoken in the Democratic Republic of Congo), Spanish, and Hebrew.
One verse offers this advice: “The moment is what counts; Live smiling until the end; But happy days will come, that nobody can believe.”
“Clearly we are living through an extraordinary period in human history, an era of unprecedented growth,” says Steven Sinding, director of the office of population at the U.S. Agency for International Development and professor of population and family health at Columbia University, according to a report from the UNFPA.
“The pace of growth poses enormous challenges for many of the poorest countries,” Sinding adds.
The population count reached 7 billion on Oct. 31, 2011. Most of the world’s population is in countries where economic growth is slower than population growth.
People in these countries experience fewer opportunities and more poverty and hunger. Humanitarian organizations are scrambling to counteract the problems that come with the population explosion. Their main solution is to promote family planning.
Other countries, like Japan, have the opposite problem, where low fertility rates will not be able to support a large and aging population.
The U.K. government and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are hosting a London Summit on Family Planning on July 11 for a global commitment to provide 120 million females by 2020 with the right to decide whether and how many children they have. These women are otherwise at risk of death or injury during childbirth or pregnancy, according to the summit website. Every day, 800 women die and 1,600 women are injured during childbirth, according to a U.N. report.
While families are having fewer children than they did in the past, the global population is still increasing because of how big the baby boomer generation is.
The U.N. established World Population Day after immense public interest when the world’s population reached 5 billion on July 11, 1987. The day was established two years later.
• 80 million people are added to the world every year. Source: the United Nations Population Fund The Epoch Times publishes in 35 countries and in 19 languages. Subscribe to our e-newsletter.
• The average global life expectancy leapt from 48 years in the early 1950s, to 68 years by the first decade of this century.
• Infant mortality plunged from 133 deaths per 1,000 infants in the 1950s, to 46 per 1,000 from 2005 to 2010.
• The number of children a woman is expected to have dropped from 6 in the 1950s to 2.5 from 2005 to 2010.
• It’s estimated that more than 15 billion people will be in the world by 2100.
• Sub-Saharan Africa is the one remaining region in the world where the population is set to double or triple in the next 40 years.
• The world reached 1 billion people in 1804; 2 billion in 1927; 3 billion in 1959; 4 billion in 1974; 5 billion in 1987; 6 billion in 1999, and 7 billion in 2011.
• 80 million people are added to the world every year.
Source: the United Nations Population Fund
The Epoch Times publishes in 35 countries and in 19 languages. Subscribe to our e-newsletter.