The World's 8 Billionth Person Born in the Dominican Republic
The world's population has reached a new level of platano power as a baby boy, born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, has been named the eighth billion person on earth.
The infant, named Damian, was born at the Nuestra Señora de la Altagracia maternity hospital on the island, where he was given a custom shirt reading, "Bebé 8000 millones," with the hashtag "#8MilMillonesMasFuerte," or "Eight Billion Stronger," sources report.
Damian was not the only baby given the designation, however, Damian has become the most popular one, as his photograph has been shared around the world. Sources have also reported his popularity as he was born at midnight, weighing less than six pounds and measuring 52 centimeters long.
According to Sonia Vásquez, the UNFPA representative in the Dominican Republic, the delivery of the child represents "hope that all the children that are born on this planet (…) will receive them with conditions. That is what we seek, zero maternal deaths, zero morbidity, zero diseases and health."
However, as the world population rises, concerns about overpopulation and the distribution of resources have been raised, especially for countries in the Global South.
UNFPA reassures that resources are available, however, world leaders must invest in education, health care and better infrastructure to tackle population growth. Additionally, they have stated that access to sexual and reproductive health and rights is pivotal, providing women with access to birth control and maternity care.
The world population reached seven billion in 2011 and is estimated to reach up to 10.4 billion in 2100 despite UNFPA reporting that population growth has declined below one percent since 2020.
Countries in the Global South continue to experience rapid population growth due to a lack of access to resources, education and poverty.
As far as the Dominican Republic is concerned, the population was at 10.8 million in 2020, with 82.5% of Dominicans living in urban areas, national statistics state.
Vásquez remarked that the average fertility rate for women in the Caribbean country is at 2.3, however, there are high rates of adolescent pregnancy that are highly concerning.