Sep 12, 2013 02:25 PM

Low Birth Rates: Causes, Consequences and Remedies

Not long ago a vocal concern was about high fertility in the world and a rapidly growing population. Remember the currently quiet zero population growth (ZPG) movement? The tide has turned since the worry now is about too few births and a falling population.

The reason for this shift in attitude is that over 80 countries have fewer births than required to replace the number of individuals who die each year. They need a large flow of immigrants each year just to prevent their populations from peaking and then declining. These low birth countries contain over 40 percent of the world's population, including every country in Western Europe, China, Japan, Russia, Poland and Canada, to name just a few. Birth rates in many other countries, including the United States, Mexico and Iran, are only a little above the level necessary to replace the number of deaths.

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