The main factor affecting Canada’s future is our unsustainable birthrate. First, some definitions:
Birthrate – the number of children that a woman has over the course of her reproductive life.
Replacement Birthrate – the number of children per woman necessary for the population to replace itself. The replacement birthrate is 2.1 children per woman.
The following chart (See Source #1) shows Canada’s birthrate from 1926 to 2011. The vertical line shows the replacement birthrate.
Since 1926, the highest birthrate was 3.94 children/woman in 1959 and the lowest was 1.51 children/woman in 2000. The birthrate in 2011 was 1.61 children/woman. Note that Canada’s birthrate has been below the replacement level for more than 40 years! Canada is therefore dependent upon immigration to maintain its population.
Women began to postpone both marriage and childbirth in the mid-1970s. By 2011, the average age of mothers at childbirth was 30.2 years. Many women are having their first child at an older age, and are concluding their childbearing in a relatively short time span.
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