Report: Alaska population down after 26 years of growth

An aging baby boomer population and a stagnate birthrate have caused Alaska’s population to fall for the first time since the 1980s recession.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports that the population dropped by 61 people between July 2013 and July 2014. The last time the population dropped was in 1987 to 1988. Additionally, more people left Alaska than arrived during the studied time period.

Data from the state Department of Labor shows Alaska lost 7,488 people from mid-2013 to mid-2014. It was the second straight year that more people left the state than arrived

State demographer and report author Eddie Hunsinger says while the size of the drop is small, it is remarkable because Alaska’s growth has been steady for so long. He attributes the drop to more deaths while birth numbers remain the same.