Population growth in Alberta second only to PEI
Despite an economy that has been buffeted by challenge after challenge, Alberta’s population has continued to grow, outpacing the national average four times in the last six years
By ATB Economics 9 November 2020 1 min read
Despite an economy that has been buffeted by challenge after challenge since the oil price crash that triggered the recession of 2015-16, Alberta’s population has continued to grow, outpacing the national average four times in the last six years.*
The latest numbers show that Alberta added 60,182 residents between July 2019 and July 2020 for a growth rate of 1.4 per cent. Canada, meanwhile, grew by 522,103 people or 1.1 per cent.
Among the provinces, only Prince Edward Island bested Alberta with a growth rate of 1.5 per cent. Because of its small size, however, this works out to only 2,363 people.
Alberta’s strong growth vis-à-vis other parts of the country is largely a function of its relatively younger population and, in turn, higher birth rate.
Before the economic troubles that started in 2015, Alberta’s population grew by an average of 2.1 per cent between 2010 and 2014. The higher growth during this period was due to strong net migration from other parts of the country as people flocked to Alberta for jobs.
With population growth comes additional economic activity, so the growth in Alberta between mid-2019 and mid-2020 is a welcome sign. However, the fact that the pace has slowed highlights the negative impact of the economic downturn that began in 2015.
*Statistics Canada’s official annual population estimates are as of July 1 of each year.