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Wednesday, December 7, 2011


The Economist last week reported on "Women and Work," with one chart particularly catching my attention, that the world population birth rate has significantly dropped over the past half a century:

The world rate was halved from 5 to 2.5 children/woman, the USA fell by a third from 3.4 to just over 2, China tumbled from 6 to below subsistence, 1.8, and Japan from 3 to not much over 1.

The world fertility rate by color follows:

   7–8 children
   6–7 children
   5–6 children
   4–5 children
   3–4 children
   2–3 children
   1–2 children
   0–1 children

The number of people on our globe depends on who you ask.  The United Nations announced a population of 7 billion on 31October2011.  The  U.S. Census Bureau today has this figure at:

World 6,979,795,370
20:17 UTC (EST+5) Dec 07, 2011

The ten largest countries are:

World population (millions)
#Top ten most populous199020082025*
World total5,2656,6888,004

Note that Japan is not growing at all, while Russia will experience a drop in population.

The following seems to hint that the world population might hit a peak at 8 billion sometime after 2040.  My Huffington Post article of June, however, predicts 7 billion in 2050.  How can that be?  Well, I fear that Peak Oil in combination with Global Warming will so seriously affect the economy that the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (I replaced War with...) will prevail with...poverty, pestilence, famine and death.

The growth in Africa, though, looks ominous, and, I suspect this is where these unanticipated deaths will occur.

The Dow Jones Industrials rose 46 to 12,196, with world markets mostly down.  Gold jumped $10/toz to $1739, while the WTI crude is at $100/barrel and the Brent Spot at $110/barrel.

Category 2 Tropical Cyclone Alenga is west of north Australia, but is weakening and should pose no threat to land.


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