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How many people are there in the world?

 

Did you know that July 11 is World Population Day? Every year on this day, we do a check-up to see what the population of the Earth is (it's good to keep track of these things). You know population — it’s the word used to describe the number of people living in an area, like a city, country or the world.

So how many people live on Earth anyway?

You might be surprised with how many there are… As of June 30, 2020, the number was:

World population is 7.8 billion, Canada is 37,742,154 which is just 0.48% of the world and children 0-14 and just 16% of Canada's population

Artwork: Pavel Voinau/123RF

Oh, you want to know how much 7.8 billion actually is? Well, it's a lot. Like A LOT! In fact, it's so much that it's actually a little hard to imagine.


Why should I care about population?

group of happy smiling kids

rawpixel/123RF

As more and more people try to live together they have to share resources not just with each other, but also with the animals that live on this planet.

We all need food, water, natural resources and land to live on. We all have to do our part to understand how many resources we use and how we can help out to preserve what we have and help our environment.


How much stuff do we all use?

Computers, laptops and ipads are just some of the things we use every day

scanrail/123RF

Take a look around you. Think about all the stuff you use and eat from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep — toilet paper, plastic bags, computers. Now multiply that by 7.8 billion! And all those things create a lot of waste.

Plastic, plastic everywhere!

57 million plastic straws are used every day  111 million plastic toothbrushes are thrown out each year.  15 billion plastic bags are used every year.

Artwork: Pavel Voinau/123RF & Pixabay

Paper, wax and water too!

100 rolls of toilet paper used by an average person per year  1.5 tons of water is used to make one computer and monitor  3 billion crayons made each year for you to colour with

Artwork: Pavel Voinau/123RF & Pixabay


But we get a lot of use out of it, right?

A lot of trash gets washed up on beaches or just left there for animals to find

Maciej Błędowski/123RF

Not always. We also throw out a lot of things that are OK, like food that could be eaten. And stuff gets thrown out into landfills and gets into oceans when we're done with it because it's not recyclable:

Food that could have been eaten

1.225 million edible apples are thrown out each year.  2.4 million edible potatoes are thrown out each year 555 thousand edible bananas are thrown out each year

Artwork: Pavel Voinau/123RF & Pixabay

Things you can only use one time

5.3 million plastic water bottles are consumed every day.  22 million pounds of plastic makes its way into the Great Lakes every year.


Artwork: Pavel Voinau/123RF & Pixabay


But what can I do?

kids recycling to help the planet and the environment

rawpixel/123RF

It might seem a little overwhelming, but there are lots of things you can do at home, at school and at play to help:

  • Use a reusable water bottle.  Instead of drinking water from plastic bottles and throwing them out after every use, get a reusable water bottle that can be filled and refilled.
  • Bring your own bag. Instead of asking for a plastic bag at the store to hold your goodies, bring your own bag with you.
  • Recycle your old toys. Instead of throwing out the toys you don't really want to play with anymore, why not give them to a friend or donate them?
  • Grab a cone. Instead of getting ice cream in a cup that's covered in wax and not recyclable, get it in a waffle or sugar cone. You can eat your ice cream container!
  • Don't litter. We get it, sometimes you just can't avoid plastic. But if you do use something plastic, put it in the trash and don't let it get blown into a river or be eaten by an animal.

Imagine if all 7.8 billion people on Earth did just one of these things? Every little bit helps!