U.S. Population Projected to Begin Declining in Second Half of Century

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NOV. 9, 2023 — The U.S. population is projected to reach a high of nearly 370 million in 2080 before edging downward to 366 million in 2100. By 2100, the total U.S. resident population is only projected to increase 9.7% from 2022, according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau population projections released today. The projections provide possible scenarios of population change for the nation through the end of the century.

The 2023 National Population Projections is an update to the last series of projections, published in 2017, to account for the impact of COVID-19 and to reflect the results of the 2020 Census through its inclusion of the Vintage 2022 National Population Estimates as a base. It also extends the population projections to 2100, the first time since 2000 that the Census Bureau projections have stretched this far into the future.

“In an ever-changing world, understanding population dynamics is crucial for shaping policies and planning resources,” stated Sandra Johnson, a demographer at the Census Bureau.

“The U.S. has experienced notable shifts in the components of population change over the last five years,” she explained. “Some of these, like the increases in mortality caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, are expected to be short-term while others, including the declines in fertility that have persisted for decades, are likely to continue into the future. Incorporating additional years of data on births, deaths and international migration into our projections process resulted in a slower pace of population growth through 2060 than was previously projected.”

Projections illustrate possible courses of population change based on assumptions about future births, deaths and net international migration. The 2023 projections include a main series (also known as the middle series) considered the most likely outcome of four assumptions, and three alternative immigration scenarios that show how the population might change under high, low and zero immigration assumptions.

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