By Monday, a mother will give birth to the seven billionth human living on Earth, experts predict.
The birth could happen anywhere in the world: China where an estimated 1.3 billion residents constitute 20 percent of the planet's population or Niger, an African nation with the world's highest birth rate, three and a half times the birth rate of the United States, according to data from the CIA.
To put 7 billion in context: if you met each living person for a single second, it would take 221 years to meet everyone.
The population landmark comes 12 years after the United Nations announced the birth of a baby boy to mother Fatima Nevic in Sarajevo.
Experts say that by 2025, the world's population could reach eight billion.
Originally, officials with the U.S. Census Bureau that tracks domestic and foreign population trends predicted that 7 billion would be reached by 2012, a number that the U.N. Populations fund says will land Oct. 31.
The crux is that some of the poorest regions of the world, including sub-Sahara Africa, also have the largest population rates.
Extreme poverty and large families tend to reinforce each other, Lester Brown, environmental analyst who heads the Earth Policy Institute in Washington, said to The Associated Press. The challenge is to intervene in that cycle and accelerate the shift to smaller families.
For many, the milestone brings an opportunity to discuss the effects of population on the world's resources.
It certainly is a matter of access to resources, Azza Karam, senior advisor with the United Nations Population Fund said during an interview with PBS Newshour. More people means more pressure on already rare resources, from the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat. It literally is a great deal more demand than there may well be supply.
But at the same time, we have to balance that perspective by looking at the opportunities that 7 billion presents in terms of the most amazing amount of human power that this Earth has ever seen, and especially given the technology that is being evolving as we speak, especially communication technologies, but also the technologies of the better use of resources that we're all trying to harvest. The fact that there will be 1.8 billion of that 7 billion is young people, which is a remarkable potential, as we're seeing every day unfold in terms its of new strategies for seeking demand.
The BBC released a calculator where you can plug in your birthdate and get a prediction of your population rank. The rank, which used data from the UN Population Fund, the Global Footprint Network and the International Telecommunications Union, predicted that by 2050, the world will have 9.3 billion people.