BISMARCK — An oil boom that drew thousands of workers to North Dakota helped it break the top 10 list for fastest growing states over the past decade, according to the U.S. Census.
Data sets released Monday, April 6, revealed the Peace Garden state added an estimated 89,486 residents from April 1, 2010, to July 1, 2019, making North Dakota the eighth fastest growing state in the U.S. Overall, the state grew by 13% and had a 2019 estimated population of 762,062, the Census said.
That growth was twice as fast as the nation, which only grew by 6.3% during that time. The U.S. gained an estimated 19.5 million people in the 2010s, bringing the 2019 total estimate to 328.2 million.
The country's annual growth was flat for most of the 2010s and even slowed toward the end of the decade. That's likely because of an economic slowdown and more people were waiting to have children, North Dakota Census Office Manager Kevin Iverson said.
"We were the exception, primarily because of immigration during that period of time," he said of North Dakota.
North Dakota attracted thousands of workers to the western side of the state in the early 2010s because of an oil boom. The state went from flatlining in the 1990s and 2000s to adding population in the past decade.
In 2013, the state grew by 3% year over year, making it the fastest growing state, according to the Census.
As the boom died down, so did growth in North Dakota. Its annual growth rate dropped from 2.3% in 2015 to nearly 0% in 2016, according to the data.
However, the state has continued to gain residents in the latter half of the decade, even if at a slow pace.
Minnesota ranked 20th for growth in the 2010s with an estimated 2019 population of 5.6 million residents. It has gained 335,705 residents since April 2010, with a growth rate near the national average of 6.3%.