Footprint Basics - Introduction

You’ve probably heard of the Ecological Footprint - the metric that allows us to calculate human pressure on the planet and come up with facts, such as: If everyone lived the lifestyle of the average American we would need 4 planets.

This section of our Web site explains how the Ecological Footprint works in basic terms. It examines the benefits of ecological accounting, introduces some of the most important Footprint findings, and addresses provocative questions: Do we fit on the planet? How can the Footprint foster sustainable human development? How do carbon emissions contribute to humanity’s Ecological Footprint?