Today is Earth Overshoot Day – when humanity’s consumption of ecological resources and services in a given year is beyond what Earth can regenerate in 12 months.
The date last year was 22 August, more than three weeks later than in 2019, but gains over that 12-month period, largely down to the impact of lockdown restrictions, have been completely wiped out as a business as usual approach slowly returns.
Mathis Wackernagel, President of the Global Footprint Network, which runs the annual Earth Overshoot Day, was a recent guest on the Inside Ideas podcast with Marc Buckley. Mathis co-founded the network in 2003 with Susan Burns. Together with its partners, the network focuses on bringing about a sustainable economy in which all can thrive within planetary boundaries.
To help everyone understand more about the difference they are making, and can make, the ecological footprint tool allows people to calculate their impact on the environment.
“The Ecological Footprint is the only metric that compares the resource demand of individuals, governments, and businesses against Earth’s capacity for biological regeneration,” Mathis said.