Stats Canada data shows that 16.9 per cent of the Canadian population is 65 and over.

Seniors outnumber kids in B.C.: Stats Can

2016 census numbers show an aging baby boomer population

British Columbia now has many more seniors than children, according to Statistics Canada data released Wednesday morning.

The federal agency’s numbers show that 18.3 per cent of B.C. residents are 65 and over, compared to 14.9 per cent who are 14 and younger. This demographic shift pushes the province’s average age to 42.3 years – younger than only the Maritimes. Canada-wide, 16.9 per cent of all residents are 65 and older.

The 2011 was the first year in which seniors outnumbered children in B.C. but at the time, the gap was just over 11,000. In 2016, seniors outnumbered children by just over 150,000. According to Statistics Canada, the sharp increase in seniors correlates with baby boomers hitting retirement age while the slow growth in children is due to decreasing fertility rates.

Rennie Group senior economist Ryan Berlin believes that the fear over too many baby boomers is overinflated. He points out that even in 2016, the number of generation Xers, the generation after the boomers, outnumbers the them.

“We’re not adding boomers, we’re losing them,” he added.

The concern over how long the boomers are living is also mostly misplaced, Berlin said.

“Because we are living longer, we will always have more people in our older age groups than we had in the past,” he said.

Longer lifespans have played a role in increasing the both percentage of seniors in B.C. and raising the ratio of women to men. In 2016, women made up 60 per cent of the province’s population – just slightly above the Canadian average of 50.9 per cent.

In the 65 and older age grouping in B.C., there were 453,425 women and just 395,555 men – a difference of almost 60,000. The only age category in which there are more men than women is children 14 and younger and there the difference is just just under 30,000.

READ: B.C. shift from single-family homes continues, says 2016 census

In the Lower Mainland, where rising house prices have spurred on worries about millennials – particularly in Vancouver itself – leaving, Rennie Group vice-president of marketing Andrew Ramlo says that census numbers disprove those concerns.

“There’s this notion that there’s this huge exodus of the younger population out of the City of Vancouver,” said Ramlo, “but [the young population] grew relatively significantly [and] only slightly slower than the regional average.”

The growth in the 15-64 population further supports that theory, said Berlin.

“Within Lower Mainland, the City of Vancouver has the second highest proportion of the 15-64 cohort,” said Berlin.

That trend still holds true when you isolate the millennial generation of 20-39-year-olds. Across B.C., that group grew by 6.4 per cent but the Vancouver census metropolitan area (roughly analogous to Metro Vancouver) grew by 7.3 per cent, said Berlin.

“Vancouver grew faster than some of the regions that are purportedly stealing this cohort,” said Berlin. “So faster than Victoria and Abbotsford-Mission.”

READ: Lower Mainland residents shift to condos, duplexes, says 2016 census


B.C. by the numbers: age and sex

B.C. population, by age and sexCreate your own infographics




Just Posted

Three percent accommodation tax approved for Bella Coola accommodation providers

Only fixed-room accommodation providers with four rooms or more are required to charge the tax.

U.S. consulate general to visit Northwest

Trip part of the region’s first-ever pop-up consul for American residents

B.C.’s north heats up to record highs

Bella Bella, Masset, Prince Rupert and the Cassiar Area all broke records

Sealed DNA in Phillip Tallio murder case must be released, orders Judge

A unanimous decision by B.C. Court of Appeal judges has ordered the release of a sealed DNA sample

BC Rural Dividend funds wildfire recovery projects in the Bella Coola Valley

Central Coast Regional District and Central Coast Communications Society are both receiving funds

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

Pro-Trump protest sign with F-word is OK, court rules

Judges say Ontario man can protest publicly, even using vulgar language

VIDEO: Police officer looking for distracted drivers gets hit by truck

Road safety investigator clipped by trailer while patrolling busy intersection

YVR wants you to help name three new puppies

Say hello to the Vancouver Airport’s new assistance pups

Suspect who attacked autistic man in Ontario could be from B.C.’s south coast: police

29-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Privacy watchdog to explore Facebook leak

Canadian expert says his analytics company helped Trump campaign capitalize on private Facebook info

Woman struck and killed by self-driving Uber vehicle

Ride-hailing company suspends all road-testing of such vehicles in U.S. and Canada

Spring snow melt uncovers dirty needles in B.C. city

Vernon residents are upset with number of needles being found around town with spring melt

US would host majority of games at 2026 World Cup

A decision on the winning bid will be made June 13 at the FIFA Congress in Mexico

Most Read