Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Modern Immigration Wave Brings 59 Million to U.S., Driving Population Growth and Change Through 2065
This new Pew Research Center report looks at the future of U.S. immigration. Fifty years after passage of the landmark law that rewrote U.S. immigration policy, nearly 59 million immigrants have arrived in the United States, pushing the country’s foreign-born share to a near record 14%. For the past half-century, these modern-era immigrants and their descendants have accounted for just over half the nation’s population growth and have reshaped its racial and ethnic composition.
This report provides a 100-year look at the impact of immigration on the nation’s demographics since passage of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act. It explores how the nation’s population has changed since the law was enacted and includes new Pew Research Center population projections through 2065. These projections are included for the nation as a whole as well for its immigrant generations and its racial and ethnic groups. The new projections are based on detailed assumptions about births, deaths and immigration levels—the three key components of population change. All these assumptions are built on recent trends, but it is important to note that these trends can change. As a result, all population projections have inherent uncertainties, especially for years further in the future, since they can be affected by changes in behavior, new immigration policies or other events.
Looking ahead, new Pew Research Center U.S. population projections show that if current demographic trends continue, future immigrants and their descendants will be an even bigger source of population growth. Between 2015 and 2065, they are projected to account for 88% of the U.S. population increase, or 103 million people, as the nation grows to 441 million.