News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


DATE: March 23, 1999 CONTACT: Greg Williams
NO: 99-35 Neal Fried
Dean Rasmussen

Labor Department Projects Alaska's Population to 2018

If population trends of the 1990s continue for the next two decades, Alaska's total population will grow to 776,488 in 2018. Alaska also will see a different regional distribution and demographic character than it does today. The new 20-year population projections for Alaska's boroughs and census areas were released today by the Alaska Department of Labor.

Projected trends
Based on recent trends, mid-range projections indicate the Anchorage/Matanuska-Susitna region should continue to grow more rapidly than the state as a whole.  In 2018, this region is expected to comprise 51.7% of the state's population and account for 56.9% of the total population growth through 2018. The Northern and Southwestern regions should grow faster than the statewide average of 1.1%, while the Gulf Coast, Interior and Southeast regions will likely grow more slowly.

The largest increase in population share is expected in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, which should increase from 8.8% of the state's population in 1998 to 13.2% in 2018.  Mat-Su's annual average growth rate of about 3.3% will be nearly three times higher than the statewide rate.  Other areas expected to grow faster than the state as a whole include the Wade Hampton Census Area, North Slope Borough and Yakutat Borough.

Areas expected to have a net loss of population between 1998 and 2018 are the Valdez-Cordova census area, Yukon-Koyukuk census area, Sitka Borough, Skagway-Hoonah-Angoon census area, Wrangell-Petersburg census area, and Aleutians East Borough.

Older Alaskans
Over the next 20 years, the number and percentage of older Alaskans in the state will increase dramatically. In 2018, Alaska's population age 65 and older is expected to triple to 92,356, up from 32,729 in 1998.  Older Alaskans will comprise almost 12 percent of the total population in 2018, up from 5.3% in 1998.

The Municipality of Anchorage should see the largest increase in older Alaskans (+23,412) followed by Matanuska-Susitna Borough (+7,498), Fairbanks North Star Borough (+6,246), Kenai Peninsula Borough (+6,089), Juneau Borough (+3,319), Ketchikan Borough (+2,077), Valdez-Cordova census area (+1,143), and Kodiak Island Borough (+1,006). Together, these areas should account for 85 percent of the growth in the senior population in the next 20 years.

School age population ages five through 17
If Alaska follows the trend of the 1990s, the number of children ages five through 17 is expected to increase by 12.9% by 2018. Numerically, the greatest growth should occur in Matanuska-Susitna Borough (+ 10,032), Kenai Peninsula Borough (+2,913), Bethel census area (+2,241), Wade Hampton census area (+1,812), Fairbanks North Star Borough (+1,191), Nome census area (+1,134), and North Slope Borough (+1,106). Declines in the school age population are anticipated in the Municipality of Anchorage, Yukon-Koyukuk census area, Sitka Borough, Wrangell-Petersburg census area, Valdez-Cordova census area, Skagway-Hoonah-Angoon census area, Aleutians West census area, Aleutians East Borough, Prince of Wales-Outer Ketchikan census area, and Kodiak Island Borough.

The Northern and Southwestern areas of the state should increase their shares of the statewide school age population, while the Southeast, Interior and Anchorage/Mat-Su shares are expected to shrink. The largest percentage increase in school age population over the next 20 years should occur in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough (+70.3%), while the school age population in the Municipality of Anchorage should decline by 2.8%.

More Population Information at Department of Labor Internet site
The Department of Labor will publish a final population projections report later this spring.  Currently, detailed tables are available on the AKDOL Internet site at

http://www.labor.state.ak.us/research/pop/popmain.htm

The Internet tables show projected population by selected age groups and components of change for labor market areas, boroughs, and census areas from 1998 to 2018 for each five-year period. These projections are built upon the birth, death and migration experience for boroughs and census areas during the1990s, excluding the impact of extreme economic events. Alternative economic scenarios will be considered in the next round of population projections.

Detailed statewide population projections by single year of age were published in the September/October issue of Alaska Economic Trends, also on the Internet at

http://www.labor.state.ak.us/trends/sep98.pdf

Table 1
Projected Population (Middle Series) by Labor Market
Region and Borough/Census Area, July 1, 1998-2018

Labor Market Area
July 1
1998
Estimate
July 1
2003
Middle
July 1
2008
Middle
July 1
2013
Middle
July 1
2018
Middle
ALASKA 621,400  656,150  693,018  733,852  776,488 
           
Anchorage/Matanuska-Susitna Region 313,308  333,042  353,770  376,779  401,631 
   Municipality of Anchorage 258,782  269,567  279,707  289,528  298,875 
   Matanuska-Susitna Borough 54,526  63,475  74,063  87,251  102,756 
           
Gulf Coast Region 73,028  76,771  80,553  84,737  88,837 
   Kenai Peninsula Borough 48,815  52,382  56,110  60,234  64,305 
   Kodiak Island Borough 13,848  14,030  14,159  14,277  14,416 
   Valdez-Cordova Census Area 10,365  10,359  10,284  10,226  10,116 
           
Interior Region 98,647  102,931  106,963  110,915  114,459 
   Denali Borough 1,864  1,993  2,129  2,303  2,495 
   Fairbanks North Star Borough 83,928  88,012  91,773  95,367  98,585 
   Southeast Fairbanks Census Area 6,402  6,814  7,270  7,753  8,203 
   Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area 6,453  6,112  5,791  5,492  5,176 
           
Northern Region 23,649  25,627  28,098  31,027  34,236 
   Nome Census Area 9,402  9,986  10,725  11,591  12,527 
   North Slope Borough 7,403  8,301  9,421  10,741  12,211 
   Northwest Arctic Borough 6,844  7,340  7,952  8,695  9,498 
           
Southeast Region 74,285  76,298  78,687  81,462  83,976 
   Haines Borough 2,476  2,606  2,776  2,961  3,146 
   Juneau Borough 30,236  31,388  32,413  33,475  34,447 
   Ketchikan Gateway Borough 14,231  15,119  16,428  18,075  19,774 
   Prince Of Wales-Outer Ketchikan C.A. 6,884  7,067  7,281  7,485  7,611 
   Sitka Borough 8,779  8,590  8,409  8,226  7,978 
   Skagway-Hoonah-Angoon C. A. 3,664  3,563  3,459  3,328  3,140 
   Wrangell-Petersburg Census Area 7,205  7,045  6,866  6,706  6,502 
   Yakutat Borough 810  920  1,055  1,206  1,378 
           
Southwest Region 38,483  41,481  44,947  48,932  53,349 
   Aleutians East Borough 2,177  2,040  1,918  1,784  1,738 
   Aleutian West Census Area 5,389  5,665  5,908  6,097  6,242 
   Bethel Census Area 15,997  17,438  19,092  21,043  23,192 
   Bristol Bay Borough 1,297  1,405  1,506  1,621  1,734 
   Dillingham Census Area 4,708  5,027  5,394  5,842  6,327 
   Lake & Peninsula Borough 1,852  1,962  2,128  2,282  2,439 
   Wade Hampton Census Area 7,063  7,944  9,000  10,263  11,677 
Source: Alaska Department of Labor, Research & Analysis Section, Demographics Unit.
 
 

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