According to the most recent state and county population data from the U.S. Census Bureau, as shown in Chart 1, North Dakota had the fastest growing population in 2014. North Dakota’s population grew by 2.2 percent (15,625 people) between 2013 and 2014.
Their booming population growth is due to both a high net natural population growth (births minus deaths) and net migration (domestic and international). Of course, the economic boom surrounding the oil and gas drilling in the Bakken Formation is primarily responsible for these positive demographic trends.
#NorthDakota has the fastest growing population in 2014. (click to tweet)
As shown in Chart 2, North Dakota’s net natural population growth as a percent of total population grew by 0.66 percent in 2014—the 5th highest growth rate in the country. This high rate of natural population growth is due to both a high number of births (1.46 percent, 3rd highest) and a low number of deaths (0.8 percent, 34th highest).
More significantly, as shown in Chart 3, North Dakota’s net migration growth as a percent of total population grew by 1.39 percent—the highest growth rate in the country. The vast majority of this migration originates within the U.S. as domestic migration grew by 1.21 percent—also the highest growth rate in the country. In contrast, international migration grew by 0.17 percent which ranks as the 28th highest.
Thanks to these favorable demographic trends, North Dakota is currently well positioned to face the coming Demographic Winter.
Of course, the population change within North Dakota is not distributed equally. The North Dakota counties with the fasted growing population growth include: McKenzie County (18.3 percent), Williams County (8.7 percent), and Stark County (7 percent). The North Dakota counties with the slowest population growth include: Burke County (-2 percent), Emmons County (-1.7 percent), and Traill County (-1.6 percent).
J. Scott Moody has over 18 years as a public policy economist with a specialty in tax policy and has over 180 publications. He has worked for numerous national and state-based think tanks such as Federalism In Action, Tax Foundation, Heritage Foundation, and The Maine Heritage Policy Center.