Eastern Oregon’s Population Growth Below Average in 2016

March 6, 2017

Portland State University’s Population Research Center recently released 2016 population estimates for Oregon and its counties and cities. Oregon’s population rose by 1.6 percent from 2015 to 2016, increasing by 62,505 to total 4,076,350. Among Oregon’s counties, Deschutes County ranked as it grew 3.5 percent, followed by Crook and Washington counties at 2.3 percent.
Eastern Oregon’s eight counties (Baker, Grant, Harney, Malheur, Morrow, Umatilla, Union, and Wallowa) combined had a growth rate of only 0.7 percent. All eight counties ranked in the lower half of Oregon’s 36 counties for growth rate from 2015 to 2016. Sixteen of Oregon’s counties had growth rates below 1.0 percent and seven of those were in the Eastern Oregon area.

  • Morrow County ranked highest among Eastern Oregon’s counties. It grew 1.0 percent, adding 115 residents to total 11,745, which translated to a ranking of 20th in Oregon.
  • Umatilla County (Eastern Oregon’s largest county) ranked right behind Morrow County in 21st position with a growth rate of 0.9 percent. Umatilla County added 725 residents from 2015 to 2016 to total 79,880.
  • Malheur County’s population grew by 0.7 percent to rank 24th, climbing by 225 residents to total 31,705.
  • Wallowa County added 40 residents to total 7,140, a growth rate of 0.6 percent which put it in the 26th position.
  • Baker County ranked right behind Wallowa County, ranking 27th with an addition of 85 residents to total 16,510.It’s growth rate was 0.5 percent.
  • Union County followed in 28th position, also growing 0.5 percent with an increase of 120 to total 26,745 residents.
  • Harney County grew by just 0.3 percent, which ranked 31st in Oregon, adding 25 residents to total 7,320.
  • Grant County ranked last among Oregon’s counties with a population decline of 0.3 percent. Grant was the only county in Oregon to decline in population from 2015 to 2016.

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