Youthful populations typically result from high fertility and birth rates. Additionally, aging populations go hand-in-hand with declining populations because birth rates are lower than death rates, and women have fewer babies.
A population’s age can affect several political, social, and cultural aspects. There is a fear that aging populations pose a threat to a society’s overall progress, as they could slow down productivity and innovation. Youthful populations are believed to have larger, more educated, and energetic workforces. This would increase economic productivity for a country or state. Additionally, it would create a larger tax base for the government, as more people would be in the workforce.
In the United States, the youngest state is Utah, which has a median age of 30.7 years. Utah’s birth rate is the highest among the states at 14.9 births per 1,000 population. Additionally, Utah is one of the healthiest states in the country, with the lowest excessive drinking rates among adults at 11.3% and the lowest smoking rate at just 9%. Only 9.76% of Utah’s population is over 65 years old.
Washington D.C. and Alaska have the second and third youngest populations with median ages of 33.9 and 34 years, respectively. Alaska’s birth rate is the third-highest in the U.S., at 13.7 births per 1,000 population. However, D.C.’s young population is more so the result of the area attracting young people in recent years. One 0.85% of Alaska’s population is above 85 years old, the lowest percentage of any state.
Below are each state’s overall median age and the median age for males and females. Plus, the table has each state’s proportion of residents over 65, 75, and 85 years old.