Watch: The first billion people took 200,000 years. The next 6 billion came in just 200 years (2023)

An oft-quoted statistic about the growth of human population is that it took 200,000 years to reach one billion. But in the 200 years after that, the world was teeming with seven billion people. The United Nations has predicted this will reach 9.7 billion by 2050 and 11 billion by 2100.

And of course, because of this incredible growth, one of the pressing conversations of our time is about the impact on our environment and resources. Because this change is radically different from anything that has come before, predictions on what will happen in the future are difficult to make.

By adding this data to map of the wold, the American Museum of Natural History tracks the growth of humans from the ice age to the present day. It's difficult to imagine a time, especially when a billion people are on Facebook alone, when there were fewer people in the world than those who travel on Mumbai's local trains each day.

Here's another video that tracks the population growth from 1 CE and makes predictions till 2050.


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