Big Growth Spurt Measured on Gulf Islands
Growth in the Southern Gulf Islands population — obvious to anyone living on one of the islands in recent years — was confirmed by release of 2021 census data today.
The number of Salt Spring Island residents grew by 10.2 per cent between 2016 and 2021. On May 11, 2021, 11,635 people were residing on Salt Spring, compared to 10,557 five years earlier.
Populations on the other Gulf Islands grew at much faster rates, however.
Mayne Island saw the largest jump, from 949 to 1,304 residents, or 37.4 per cent. Galiano Island’s population grew from 1,044 in 2016 to 1,396 in 2021, or 33.7 per cent.
Saturna Island’s population increased by 31.4 per cent — from 354 to 465.
North Pender saw a slower pace of growth (19.4 per cent) from 2,067 to 2,467, and South Pender went from 235 to 306 residents, for a 30.2 per cent hike.
For Galiano and Mayne islands, substantial growth reverses a trend from the previous two census periods, which saw populations drop on both islands.
British Columbia had 5,000,879 residents on the 2021 census date (for 7.6 per cent growth), and Canada’s population reached 36,991,981, up 5.2 per cent from 2016.