This post by Bill Sims
There was a brief mention of this in our last post, but it seems worth repeating. Contrary to what many people think about Nevada, we are the most urban state in the nation, and it looks like that trend will continue. The dynamics of our changing population and demographics will provide many challanges and abundant opportunities for business in Nevada, but for those of us living and working in the rural areas of the state, those challanges and opportunities will be much different from the experience in Las Vegas and Reno-Carson.
Here is the complete press release from Jeff Hardcastle:
“Reno, NV 10-19-2006 – The Nevada State Demographer’s Office has released its population projections for 2006 through 2026. The projections are for the state and the counties. Overall, Nevada is projected to grow by more than 1.8 million or 74 percent over the next 20 years.“Nevada will likely continue to outpace the national growth rate,” said State Demographer Jeff Hardcastle. “The Census Bureau’s Interim Projections show the United States growing by 19 percent between 2000 and 2020 and Nevada’s growth rate is projected at 74 percent for the same period; within Nevada, change will be unevenly distributed.”
Northwestern Nevada (Carson City, Churchill, Douglas, Lyon, Storey, and Washoe Counties) is projected to grow by more than 278,000 people. Rural Nevada (Elko, Esmeralda, Eureka, Humboldt, Lander, Lincoln, Mineral, Pershing, and White Pine Counties) is currently experiencing mining growth and that may last through 2013.
“There were some projects that are in the beginning stages that might help some of these counties weather any mining downturn,” said Hardcastle. “So while the projections show a potential loss by 2026, that may not happen. Southern Nevada (Clark and Nye Counties) is projected to grow by over 1.5 million people.”
The projections are used in preparing the state’s budget and for other planning purposes. They were prepared using the Regional Economic Models Inc. (REMI) model. This model relates a county’s population and economy to other counties in the model and the nation as a whole. A draft of the projections was sent to local governments and other interested parties for comment.
Hardcastle also said there are a number of factors that were not able to be included in the model, and those could impact how much Nevada continues to grow. These factors include affordable housing, the federal deficit, the trade deficit, a continued reliance on foreign oil and the peak production of oil and global climate change.”
I would add WATER to Jeff’s list of issues that could affect Nevada’s growth.
The complete data set for these projections is located here on our website.