According to calculations by the United Nations, the earth will gain its 7 billionth inhabitant on October 31st*.
The earth has doubled its population since 1967 and will reach 8 billion by 2025. Because high fertility is linked with poverty, most of the additions to the global count will be born where there is little access to energy, education and resources. According to The Guardian, the 7 billionth child will most likely be born in northern India, a country where half of children under 5 are malnourished and illiteracy is rising.
Expanding human demands are placing enormous pressure on natural resources at a global scale — fuel, forests, fisheries and water. And it is not just population growth: demand is driven by rising economic and lifestyle aspirations as well.
Check out National Geographic’s year-long series, 7 Billion, for in-depth articles on demographics, food security, climate change, fertility and more.
*The date is a rough marker only.
For all the latest science news, check out the National Geographic’s twice-weekly news rundown, Earth Current.