Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Population Group Says 300 Million Americans Is Not Enough

Population Research Institute pri@pop.org wrote:
Date: Monday, October 16th, 2006
Subject: "300 Million Is Not Enough"

Population Group Says 300 Million Americans Is Not Enough

FRONT ROYAL, Va.—Contradicting what many experts have been saying, the Population Research Institute (PRI) believes that the United States is suffering from insufficient population growth even though the U.S. Census Bureau says the American population will reach 300 million tomorrow. “When you look at the projections that show our population aging rapidly over the next few decades, when you see our economy and government programs such as Social Security risking bankruptcy, you can see that the United States’ annual 0.9% population growth rate is not enough,” said Steven Mosher, President of PRI. “America’s baby boomers didn’t have many children on average, and as a result, our country faces a gray dawn. Even our currently high immigration levels haven’t made up the difference.”

“According to United Nations figures, the percentage of the American population 65 or over will rise from 12.3% today to 20.6% by 2050. The proportion of Americans 80 or over will rise from 3.6% to 7.3% of the population,” said Joseph A. D’Agostino, Vice President for Communications at PRI. “Our worker-to-retiree ratio is already at a dangerous 3-to-1. By 2050, it will be 2-to-1. And those retirees will be living much longer than they do today thanks to beneficial improvements in health care. We’ve been trying to make up for our low birthrate through lots of immigration, which has created its own problems. But if Americans won’t create the next generation, then it must be imported.”

The birthrate of the United States is 2.0 children per woman, slightly less than the replacement rate of 2.1. Without immigrants, the birthrate would be even lower. As we have noted previously, the United States’ population density is 31 people per square kilometer, well below the world average of 48 and far below those of most Western European nations. Americans continue to leave rural areas for large metropolitan areas, creating the illusion that America is becoming overpopulated. Yet only 4.7% of American land is built up.

For more information including an audio clip, go to www.pop.org. To schedule an interview, call Joseph D’Agostino at 540-622-5240 ext. 204. E-mail: jad@pop.org.

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