World Population 8 billion
Ultimately, living better and more equitably will help us find the right balance also in terms of global population, without the need to impose restrictions. Representational image: PTI

World Population Day 2022: History, theme, '8 billion opportunities'

Today (July 11) is World Population Day. The day was first marked on 11 July 1990 in more than 90 countries. This year the global population will reach eight billion people on November 15, according to the United Nations’ (UN) latest projection.

This year’s theme for the World Population Day is – “A world of 8 billion: Towards a resilient future for all – Harnessing opportunities and ensuring rights and choices for all”.

In a statement, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) said, “Focusing only on population numbers and growth rates often leads to coercive and counterproductive measures and the erosion of human rights, for example, to women being pressured to have children or prevented from doing so. It can deepen already acute inequalities, such as through policies shutting down reproductive health care or denying adequate pensions for the elderly, further marginalising the most disenfranchised.”

Also read: Sharpest fall in population growth rate has been among Muslims: NFHS-5 data

“World Population Day offers a moment to celebrate human progress. Our world, despite its challenges, is one where higher shares of people are educated and live healthier lives than at any previous point in history. Societies that invest in their people, in their rights and choices, have proven time and again that this is the road to the prosperity and peace that everyone wants—and deserves.

“Let’s keep this fact in mind when, in the next few months, the total number of people in the world tops 8 billion. This milestone will attract much attention and debate, and likely scaremongering over ‘too many’ people. That would be a mistake,” it added.

Global population

According to the UN, it took hundreds of thousands of years for the world population to grow to 1 billion – then in just another 200 years or so, it grew sevenfold. In 2011, the global population reached the 7 billion mark, it stood at almost 7.9 billion in 2021 and will top 8 billion in 2022. It’s expected to grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030, 9.7 billion in 2050, and 10.9 billion in 2100.

India is projected to surpass China as the world’s most populous country next year, according to a report by the UN on Monday (July 11).

Also read: India has 115 cr mobile subscribers; 98% population has access to 4G

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, in a message on World Population Day, urged everyone to care for the planet.

“This year’s World Population Day falls during a milestone year, when we anticipate the birth of the Earth’s eight billionth inhabitant. This is an occasion to celebrate our diversity, recognise our common humanity, and marvel at advancements in health that have extended lifespans and dramatically reduced maternal and child mortality rates,” he said.

“At the same time, it is a reminder of our shared responsibility to care for our planet and a moment to reflect on where we still fall short of our commitments to one another. Amidst COVID-19, the climate crisis, wars and conflicts, humanitarian emergencies, hunger and poverty, our world is in peril,” he added.

He said with the world population reaching 8 billion this year, it provides for 8 billion opportunities to “live dignified and fulfilled lives”.

“Reaching a global population of eight billion is a numerical landmark, but our focus must always be on people. In the world we strive to build, 8 billion people means 8 billion opportunities to live dignified and fulfilled lives. When we act on our shared values, we contribute to our common future. Let us work together towards greater equality and solidarity to ensure that our planet can support our needs and those of future generations. Let us protect human rights and the ability of all individuals to make informed choices about whether and when to have children,” he said.


According to the UN, World Population Day seeks to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues. It was established by the then-Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989, an outgrowth of the interest generated by the Day of Five Billion, which was observed on 11 July 1987.

By resolution 45/216 of December 1990, the United Nations General Assembly decided to continue observing World Population Day to enhance awareness of population issues, including their relations to the environment and development.

The Day was first marked on 11 July 1990 in more than 90 countries. Since then, a number of a number of UNFPA country offices and other organizations and institutions commemorate World Population Day, in partnership with governments and civil society.

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