World Population Day is globally celebrated every year on July 11. The main purpose of celebrating this day is to focus the attention of the world on the importance of population issues and to spread awareness among people about the impact of the growing population worldwide. Population issues include family planning, gender equality, poverty, child marriage, human rights, maternal health, child health, unemployment, water scarcity, unavailability of resources, etc.
China is the world’s most populous (around 1.44 billion) country in the world, followed by India (1.40 billion). It is predicted that India will soon overtake China and will be the most populous country in the world.
Let us read the article to know more about World Population Day, its history, importance, and how this day is celebrated.
July 11 of every year is World Population Day. This special day has been celebrated for almost three decades with the goal of highlighting the impacts caused due to overpopulation and how overpopulation may harm the ecosystem and progress of humanity.
So, let’s learn about the history behind it.
World Population Day was established, to draw the attention of people to the issues of the growing population, by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 1989 because of an outgrowth of the interest generated by the Five Billion Day, observed on July 11, 1987.
The world’s population reached five billion people on this day. In December 1990, The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to continue observing World Population Day to spread awareness on population issues and their impact on the environment and development and resolution 45/216 made this official.
On July 11, 1990, more than 90 countries witnessed the first celebration of World Population Day. A number of United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) country offices, other organisations, and institutions since then celebrate World Population Day in partnership with governments and civil society.
As per the latest data released by the United Nations, approximately 83 million people are added to the world's population every year and by 2030, it is expected that the world population will reach the 8.6 billion mark. You might not think of population issues having much effect on your life if you are enjoying a comfortable lifestyle in a first-world country such as the United States. But the addition of more people to the population definitely creates demands for more power and food that are needed to sustain all of them. Therefore, it is very difficult to keep up with that amount of food and power production for the growing population. As a result, the efforts to do so are greatly contributing to climate change that directly affects you no matter where you live.
World Population Day definitely reminds us to look at the broader picture of the population issues that influence how people live now and the current population. It is mainly focused on the future and what efforts it should take to slow the population growth. Now, the most important thing to consider is what the world will look like for the generations to come such as your kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids if the population continues to rise at this rate.
A big disparity exists in how population issues affect people of different countries. Population issues affect people in developing countries disproportionately. For example, the life expectancy of people living in very poor countries is about 20 years shorter than people in developed countries. About one-third of the population growth is the result of unplanned pregnancies that often happen due to a lack of education and family planning. Therefore, World Population Day is a wake-up call for all of us to step up and work on these important issues together.
The increasing population also adversely affects women's health during pregnancy and childbirth. The issues of the population also cause strain on society such as crimes are happening more than ever before and with the growing population, violations like child labour and human trafficking are also becoming normal.
World population day is celebrated on an international level where various countries and organisations participate by organising a variety of activities and events on how to take precautions and combat population issues and the risks and consequences of a disproportionate population-to-resources ratio.
Some of the activities organised on this day include educational informational sessions, seminars, discussions, educational competitions, essay writing competitions, round table discussions, poster distribution, slogans, public contests, workshops, sports activities, debates, speeches, songs, poems, artwork, etc.
Not only this, even the TV channels, radio, and news channels broadcast various programs related to population and the importance of family planning. Various population divisions and health organisations work together to solve population issues by organising conferences, research works, project analyses, etc.
Every year, the world population is increasing by 83 million people.
The European population is really shrinking whereas the African population is growing fast.
Being the second smallest independent country in the world, Monaco is the most densely populated country in the world. It has a total population of 68,212 per square mile.
The life expectancy of people has increased unexpectedly over the last 20 years. The average global life expectancy of people in the year 2000 was 67 years old. Twenty years later, it increased to 72.
By now, you have already understood the importance of spreading awareness among the public about the population issues and the impact they have on the overall growth and development of the nation and the environment. Though World Population Day is observed all over the world, people’s attention alone is not enough to solve the problem of overpopulation.
The government, various health organisations, and NGOs must come forward and work together on the above-mentioned population issues to fix the problem. With better education and awareness, we will be able to make steady progress in the years to come.