World Population Day is an annual event, celebrated on July 11 each year, that seeks to raise awareness of the problems of the global population. The event was established by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Program in 1989. It was inspired by the public interest in Five Billion Day on July 11, 1987, the approximate date when the world’s population reached five billion people. World Population Day aims to raise people’s awareness of various population-related issues, such as the importance of family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health and human rights.
The day was suggested by Dr. K.C. Zachariah when the population reached five billion when she worked as Sr. Demographer at the World Bank. While the interest of the press and general awareness in the world population only increases in increments of entire billions of people, the world population increases annually by approximately 100 million every 14 months. The world population reached 7,400,000,000 on February 6, 2016; the world population reached 7,500,000,000 around 4:21 pm on April 24, 2017. The world population reached 7,700,000,000 in 2019.
In November, UNFPA, together with the governments of Kenya and Denmark, will convene a high-level conference in Nairobi to accelerate efforts to achieve these unmet goals. On World Population Day, supporters around the world are calling on leaders, policy makers, grassroots organizers, institutions and others to help make reproductive health and rights a reality for all.