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California Minority Populations Now The Majority

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This story comes courtesy of California Watch.

By Agustin Armendariz

In all but eight of California's 26 metropolitan areas, minorities make up more than half the population.

A new study from the Brookings Institute, a think tank in Washington, D.C., analyzed the demographic makeup of the nation's 100 largest metro areas and found minorities accounting for almost the entire growth in those areas since 2000:

Non-whites and Hispanics accounted for 98 percent of population growth in large metro areas from 2000 to 2010. Forty-two of the 100 largest metro areas lost white population, and 22 now have "majority minority" populations. Smaller metro areas and areas outside of metropolitan regions, by contrast, remain overwhelmingly white.

Eleven of California's 26 metro areas are among the largest 100 in the nation, and in all except the
Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville metro area, whites account for less than 50 percent of the population.

In 2000, minorities made up more than half the population in 14 major metro areas nationwide, and only five in 1990, according to the study.

The study calculated the share of the population represented by white residents from the 1990 Census through the 2010 count. The results for the 11 California metros that are part of the study are in the table below. The map following it shows all 26 California metro areas tracked during the last census. More darkly shaded areas indicate that minorities make up more than 50 percent of the population as of the 2010 Census.

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To access an interactive map with this data, please click here.

Agustin Armendariz is an investigative reporter for California Watch, a project of the non-profit Center for Investigative Reporting. Find more California Watch stories here.

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