DEMOGRAPHICS OF ALASKA

Demographics
The United States Census Bureau, as of July 1, 2008, estimated Alaska's population at 686,293, which represents an increase of 59,361, or 9.5%, since the last census in 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 60,994 people (that is 86,062 births minus 25,068 deaths) and a decrease due to net migration of 5,469 people out of the state. Immigration from outside the U.S. resulted in a net increase of 4,418 people, and migration within the country produced a net loss of 9,887 people. In 2000 Alaska ranked the 48th state by population, ahead of Vermont and Wyoming (and Washington D.C.). Alaska is the least densely populated state, and one of the most sparsely populated areas in the world, at 1.0 person per square mile (0.42/km²), with the next state, Wyoming, at 5.1 per square mile (1.97/km²). Alaska is the largest U.S. state by area, and the sixth wealthiest (per capita income).

Race and ancestry
According to the 2000 U.S. Census, White Americans made up 69.3% of Alaska's population. African Americans made up 3.5% of Alaska's population. In addition, American Indians and Alaska Natives were the largest minority group; they made up 15.6% of Alaska's population. Asian Americans made up 4.0% of Alaska's population. Pacific Islander Americans made up 0.5% of Alaska's population. Individuals from some other race made up 1.6% of Alaska's population while individuals from two or more races made up 5.4% of the state's population. In addition, Hispanics and Latinos made up 4.1% of Alaska's population.

In terms of ancestry, German Americans were the largest single ethnic group in Alaska; they made up 16.6% of Alaska's population and they were the only ethnic group in the state to number over 100,000 members. Irish Americans made up 10.8% of Alaska's population while English Americans made up 9.6% of the state's population. Norwegian Americans made up 4.2% of Alaska's population and French Americans made up 3.2% of the state's population.

As of the 2005–2007 American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, White Americans made up 68.5% of Alaska's population. Blacks or African Americans made up 3.8% of Alaska's population. American Indians and Alaska Natives made up 13.4% of Alaska's population; still remaining the largest minority group. Asian Americans made up 4.6% of Alaska's population. Pacific Islander Americans remained at 0.5% of the state's population. Individuals from some other race made up 1.9% of Alaska's population while individuals from two or more races made up 7.2% of the state's population. Hispanics or Latinos made up 5.5% of Alaska's population.

In terms of ancestry, German Americans remained the largest single ethnic group in Alaska; they made up 19.3% of Alaska's population and were still the only ethnic group in the state with over 100,000 members. Irish Americans made up 12.5% of Alaska's population while English Americans made up 10.8% of the state's population. Norwegian Americans remained at 4.2% of Alaska's population and French Americans made up 3.6% of the state's population.

Languages

According to the 2005–2007 American Community Survey, 84.7% of people over the age of five speak only English at home. About 3.5% speak Spanish at home. About 2.2% speak another Indo-European language at home and about 4.3% speak an Asian language at home. And about 5.3% speak other languages at home.

A total of 5.2% of Alaskans speak one of the state's 22 indigenous languages, known locally as "native languages". These languages belong to two major language families: Eskimo-Aleut and Na-Dene. As the homeland of these two major language families of North America, Alaska has been described as the crossroads of the continent, providing evidence for the recent settlement of North America via the Bering land bridge.

Luciano Mende

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