Consuming Our Year’s Resources 133 Days Too Soon This Year

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According to the Global Footprint Network and WWF’s Living Planet Report, yesterday was Earth Overshoot Day. That means the seven billion people on Earth have consumed the globe’s renewable resources for the year. In other words for the next 133 days humanity will be accumulating ecological debt by overdrawing on our collective resources.

“Simply put, we are asking for more than we have available,” said Jim Leape, Director General of WWF International. “Nature is the basis of our wellbeing and our prosperity—but we are using up way too much of the Earth’s finite resources.”

WWF and Global Footprint Network track renewable resource-use like fisheries, forests, land use, and greenhouse gas emissions to track just how quickly global civilization runs into the red. Once the limit is hit, society begins to deplete natural resources, a practice which is helping to drive biodiversity loss, climate change, and other global environmental problems. Rising greenhouse gas emissions is especially pushing society over ecological limits.

“We have chosen to ignore the idea of living within our means in the one arena, the ecological, where it is critical for our survival.”said Andrew Simms, who was the originator of the Earth Overshoot Day.

Humanity first overshot its annual resources in the mid-1980s and has been continuing to draw more-and-more annually as both populations and consumption patterns continue to rise. Last year, Earth Overshoot Day fell on August 20th.

Article appearing courtesy Celsias.

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About Author

Walter’s contributions to CleanTechies over the past 4 years have been instrumental in growing the publications social media channels via his ongoing editorial and data driven strategies. He is the founder and managing director of Sunflower Tax, a renewable energy tax and finance consultancy based in San Diego, California. Active in the San Diego clean technology community, participating in events sponsored by CleanTech San Diego, EcoTopics, and Cleantech Open San Diego, Walter has also been a presenter at numerous California Center for Sustainability (CCSE) programs. He currently serves as an adjunct professor at the University of San Diego School of Law where he teaches a course on energy taxation and policy.

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