As of August 2, we have used more of the earth’s natural resources than our planet can regenerate over the entire year. By the end of 2017, we will have used at least 1.7 earths-worth of natural resources.
Today is Earth Overshoot Day. Each year, the Global Footprint Network calculates the day our demand on nature exceeds earth’s renewal capacity. This year marks the earliest occurrence of the date yet. This year, the Global Footprint Network joins with 30 partners to promote #MoveTheDate, an initiative to highlight solutions and encourage individual pledges to move Earth Overshoot Day to later in the year. If we moved Earth Overshoot Day 4.5 days later every year, we would be living within the planet’s renewal capacity by 2050.
Among these solutions is the latest version of The Global Footprint Network’s Footprint Calculator, which allows users to measure their own ecological footprint and assess their personal Earth Overshoot Day by answering questions about their lifestyle. A personal Overshoot Day indicates the date Earth Overshoot Day would fall on if all global citizens had this user’s ecological footprint. Users can see how their Overshoot Day compares to those of countries around the world, learn how to reduce their ecological footprint and connect to information on living more sustainably.
More than 2 million people around the world used Global Footprint Network’s calculator in 2016. “Our planet is finite, but human possibilities are not. Living within the means of one planet is technologically possible, financially beneficial, and our only chance for a prosperous future,” said Mathis Wackernagel, CEO of Global Footprint Network and co-creator of the Ecological Footprint. “We hope our new Footprint Calculator enables millions more people around the world to explore sustainability solutions and gain an uplifting sense of the possibilities available to society.”