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Human Population


Over the past 100 years, BC’s population has increased about 12 times, growing from a little over 392 thousand to over 4.6 million people today! In the last decade, BC’s population grew by 11% compared to 10% for all of Canada. 51 % of the population is female and 2/3’s 1of the total population is of working age, from 15 – 64 years old.


 Most British Columbians, about 88%3, live in cities. At the time of the last census in 2016, about 60% of BC’s population was living in the Greater Vancouver and Victoria area and these two cities also experienced the highest population growth from 2011 – 2016.

It is estimated that by 2041, BC’s population will reach more than 6 million people. Population growth and the man-made structures that go with it increase demands on the environment - watersheds, ecosystems and natural landscapes - and will continue to do so in the future.

Growth of human population in BC is not the same all over the Province. This map from the 2016 census shows areas in purple where the population got larger and areas in orange where the population got smaller from 2011 –2016.

Use BC Tomorrow to see how the population in your region has changed during the past 30 years, how it may change in the next 30 years, and the potential consequences to your watershed.

British Columbia's future is in your hands! See what you can do!

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