Colorado had the Second Fastest Growing Population in 2015

Jun 21, 2016


According to the most recent state and county population data from the U.S. Census Bureau, as shown in Chart 1, Colorado had the second fastest growing population in 2015. Colorado’s population grew by 1.9 percent (100,986 people) between 2014 and 2015.


 Chart 1 Colorado Percent Change in Population 2014 to 2015.jpg


Colorado’s booming population growth is due to both a high net natural population rate (births minus deaths) and net migration rate (domestic and international).




#Colorado has the second fastest growing population in 2015. (click to tweet)


As shown in Chart 2, Colorado’s net natural population rate, as a percent of total population, was 0.59 percent in 2015—the 9th highest rate in the country. This high percentage of natural population growth is predominately due to a low death rate (0.64 percent, 3rd lowest) as their birth rate is middle-of-the-road (1.23 percent, 28th highest)).


 Chart 2 Colorado Net Natural Population Change as a Percent of Population 2015.jpg


More significantly, as shown in Chart 3, Colorado’s net migration rate, as a percent of total population, was 1.24 percent—the 4th highest rate in the country. The vast majority of this migration originates within the U.S. with domestic migration rate at 1 percent—the 3rd highest rate in the country. In contrast, international migration rate was 0.24 percent which ranks as the 24th highest.


 Chart 3 Colorado Net Migration as a Percent of Population 2015.jpg


Thanks to these favorable demographic trends, Colorado is currently well positioned to face the coming Demographic Winter.




Of course, the population change within Colorado is not distributed equally. The top 10 Colorado counties with the highest rate of population change between 2014 and 2015 include:


  • Broomfield County, CO (5.2 percent)
  • Mineral County, CO (4.5 percent)
  • Weld County, CO (3.2 percent
  • Denver County, CO (2.8 percent)
  • Sedgwick County, CO (2.8 percent)
  • Larimer County, CO (2.7 percent)
  • Summit County, CO (2.7 percent)
  • Douglas County, CO (2.4 percent)
  • Elbert County, CO (2.3 percent)
  • Custer County, CO (2.3 percent


The bottom 10 Colorado counties with the slowest rate of population change between 2014 and 2015 include:


  • Jackson County, CO (-2.8 percent)
  • San Juan County, CO (-2.5 percent)
  • Conejos County, CO (-1.7 percent
  • Rio Blanco County, CO (-1.6 percent)
  • Cheyenne County, CO (-1.3 percent)
  • Yuma County, CO (-1.1 percent)
  • Phillips County, CO (-1 percent)
  • Crowley County, CO (-0.9 percent)
  • Hinsdale County, CO (-0.9 percent)
  • Prowers County, CO (-0.8 percent)


Click here to view our full demographic data app with details by state, by county, type of growth (natural [births minus deaths] and migrant [domestic and international]), and over time.


 Colorado Percent Population Change by County 2014 to 2015.jpg

Please share Infographic (right click, "save image as")


Category: Demographics

J. Scott Moody

Scott has nearly 20 years of experience as a public policy economist. He is the author, co-author and editor of over 180 studies and books. His professional experience also includes positions at the American Conservative Union Foundation, Granite Institute, Federalism In Action, Maine Heritage Policy Center, Tax Foundation, and Heritage Foundation.

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