By Sandra G. Leon
The population of the United States grew during the past ten years only because of high birth rates among minority groups and immigration from foreign countries, according to new data estimates released by the US Census Bureau.
While the US added a total of 19.5 million people between 2010 and 2019, the total number of Whites decreased for the first time since the first census in 1790. The decline in the total White population has been attributed to a reduction of births among young adult White women and an increase in deaths among Whites, including from advanced age as well as high rates of suicide and drug overdoses.
White population gains have been decreasing over the past 40 years, from 11.2 million between 1970 and 1980 down to 2.8 million between 2000 and 2010, but this marked the first time the population has decreased, although the total number was only a reduction of 9,000. The decrease was nearly offset by a total of 1,056,594 white immigrants.
But White populations declined in all 50 states, including 358 of the 364 U.S. metropolitan areas and in 3,012 of all 3,141 counties in the country. Now, more than 25% of the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the country have minority-White populations, including Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, and Washington, D.C. The states with the highest White populations are Maine, Vermont, West Virginia, and New Hampshire.
Population growth among minorities drove the overall increase in the US population.
While the White population decreased by 0.2% during the period, minority groups’ populations increased, including Hispanics (+20%), Asian-Americans (+29), Blacks (+8.5%), and Native -Americans (7.6%).
Hispanic/Latino population growth was primarily due to higher birth rates, with only 24% of the increase coming from new immigrants to the country.
Asian-Americans, on the other hand, saw 74% of their population increase coming from new immigrants.
The relative ages of each racial group also show signs of further decreases in Whites and increase in minorities.
In 2019, the White median age was 43.7, compared to 29.8 for Latinos, 34.6 for Blacks, 37.5 for Asians, and 20.9 for people identifying as two or more races. Latinos, in particular, have a higher number of women in child-bearing ages and they each have more children on average than whites.
The new data shows that Latinos contributed 10 million people of the 19.5 million overall population increase between 2010 to 2019. Asian Americans increased by 4.5 million, Blacks by 3.2 million, and persons of two more races by 1.7 million people.
The ongoing 2020 Census will be used to confirm these new estimates that have been derived from updated information the Census Bureau has compiled during the past nine years.