The study attempted to link these countries’ religious identities with the social motives behind belonging to particular groups. Researchers said that as the masses who claim religious non-affiliation swell, it becomes more appealing to join the ranks of that group. A 2006 Statistics Canada report noted that 16% of Canadians reported no religious affiliation in 2001, up from 4% 30 years earlier. However, young Canadians are even less religious, with close to half of 15–29 year olds claiming no religious identity in 2004. In the Netherlands, where close to 50% of the population identifies as not belonging to a religion, Weiner said they found that by mid-century close to 70 per cent of the country will be made up of non-believers.
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