In One Chart: Our children could live to witness the end of global population growth

Babies. Babies. And more babies.

In 1950, women were having an average of 4.7 children in their lifetime, driving an unprecedented population explosion around the world.

Since then, however, that number has been cut in half, according to a recent report from the United Nations, which points out that, in order to keep population growing, a fertility rate of 2.1 births per woman is needed.

We’re getting close.

By 2050, the U.N. projects an average of 2.2 births per woman. That’s barely enough to replace the dead, much less fuel further growth.

And as you can see by this chart from Max Roser’s Our World in Data blog, there will be long-term implications.

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