This year, world population hit a new milestone in human development as it reached 8 billion people across the Globe. This milestone was honored by the United Nations declaring November 15, 2022, “The Day of Eight Billion”.
To mark this event, we used our timeline creator tool to put together a visual chronology of key world population milestones from the 1800 to today. We also included some projections of population growth to show when statisticians predict that humanity will reach future milestones. Further down, you’ll also find the answers to some frequently asked questions about population growth.
The visual was built in PowerPoint using Office Timeline and the original file is available to download for free. You can use the picture in your presentations as an image or include it as an entire PowerPoint slide.
World population milestones by the billions
Until the 19th century, since there was no reliable way to track population growth and decline, scholars failed to record any world population milestones. There are now several organizations that track global population demographics, but for this article we chose the numbers proposed by the reputable United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
This is when the United Nations estimates that the world’s population reached each billion milestone:
- one billion in 1804;
- two billion in 1927 (123 years later);
- three billion in 1960 (33 years later);
- four billion in 1974 (14 years later);
- five billion in 1987 (13 years later);
- six billion in 1999 (12 years later);
- seven billion in October 2011 (12 years later);
- eight billion on November 15, 2022 (11 years later).
FAQs about world population
Here are the answers to the most frequent questions people ask related to world population growth.
Studies published by the United Nations estimate that world population may have reached 1 billion people in 1804.
It’s difficult to pinpoint the exact moment, but the United Nations proposed October 31, 2011, as a symbolic date for reaching the 7 billion milestone for global population. The day was chosen based on data incorporated from its estimates over a 5-year period.
The United Nations stated that global population probably reached 8 million on November 15, 2022. The date is approximate, as there is no official count, only estimates. The UN announced that its projections indicated we should have passed the 8-billion threshold around this date.
Researches differ in their projections according to various statistical models, but the United Nations estimates that we will reach 10 billion in world population in 2059. Other simulations suggest dates like 2054, 2056, or 2058. In any case, most projections indicate the late 2050s as the probable date for reaching the 10 billion milestone.
At the beginning of the 20th century, world population was probably around 2 billion people. However, statistics from around that time are unreliable. This not surprising, since major events like the First World War and the outbreak of Spanish flu made it difficult to register population deaths and births correctly.
United Nation reports predict that world population in 2050 will be around 9.7 billion people. The same study suggests that human population will peak at nearly 11 billion around 2100.
About the world population milestone timeline
The visual timeline presenting the major global population milestones was created using Office Timeline, a user-friendly add-in for PowerPoint that takes your list of milestones and arranges them into easy-to-understand timelines. You can download the timeline as a PowerPoint file for free and update the milestones either manually, or automatically with the free 14-day trial from Office Timeline.