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A Scary Arrival on Halloween: the 7 Billionth Human


A father cradles his newborn; photo by Rebecca Hale


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.


  1. Daniel Stevens
    October 26, 2011, 4:39 pm

    That is an entirely frightening thought that even though we are putting immense pressure on the Earth’s resources already, by 2025 it will be a whole lot worse. The population in India is obviously out of control, and will take years to stabilise, but how much time do we really have?