The government has provided researchers with a very useful online tool for calculating the UK population for any year between 1992 and 2031. The website provides an interactive map that graphically illustrates the extent to which age profile of the UK will change over the next few years. The mapping tool allows the user to select criteria for studying various age groups from UK level down to every local authority. So, if you’d like to see what the age profile of your locality will look like in ten years’ time, this site will help you plan ahead.
To find out more, use this link
It's actually quite striking. If you set the age range to the 0-15's, it's like watching pools of water dry up on a sunny day, as the drought of young people spreads across the country. Or watch the progress of the over-65s (which I join just after the end of the period) as the map gradually darkens. This raises massive questions about who can support an increasingly dependent population, and throws into stark relief Jonathan Sacks comments a couple of weeks ago about the 'selfishness' of a secular Europe which, through choosing to have fewer children, is sowing trouble for the future.
I'd be interested to see whether the data shows that it's secularism, or economic development, which has the strongest influence on the birthrate. If the former, then that's a challenging correlation for a Darwinian atheist to grapple with. If the evidence shows that, the more secular a society, the lower the birthrate, then in terms of 'survival of the fittest', this is rather interesting. To caricature, the only way a secular society can survive is by importing people from more religious countries to do the jobs.
On the other hand, you could say that giving birth to a child in the West is an act of selfishness, as they are likely to have a much bigger carbon footprint than a child anywhere else in the world. For the moment, falling birthrates in the richest countries are good news for the globe, as they apply a certain restraint to global warming. Not enough mind you.
(housekeeping note: I'm at the Mission 21 Conference in Bath for the next couple of days, so if comments take time to appear, it's because I've not sussed out the wifi provision.)