A section of the border fence near San Diego at sunset. Photo by Chris Stone
A section of the border fence near San Diego at sunset. Photo by Chris Stone

Presidential front runner Donald Trump’s plan to build a “great wall” along the Mexican border may in the end prove unnecessary because immigration is falling and most newcomers now are from Asia.

A report released Monday by the influential Pew Research Center finds that immigration peaked in 2005 and since then Asians have supplanted Hispanics as the largest group of newcomers. In fact, Asians are projected to be largest immigrant group overall by 2055.

“Asia currently is the largest source region among recently arrived immigrants and has been since 2011,” the study noted. “One result of slower Mexican immigration is that the share of new arrivals who are Hispanic is at its lowest level in 50 years.”

Between 2015 and 2065, immigrants are projected to account for 88 percent of the U.S. population increase, reaching 103 million people as the nation grows to 441 million.

By then non-Hispanic whites will represent only 46 percent of the population, and no racial or ethnic group will constitute a majority, the study found.

A survey that accompanied the study found that a plurality of Americans — 45 percent — say immigrants are making U.S. society better, compared to 37 percent who say immigration is making it worse.

However, the respondents were more positive about immigrants from Asia than those from Latin America, and a majority said immigrants were not assimilating or learning English fast enough.

The Washington-based Pew Research Center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that seeks to inform the public about issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world.

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.