Ecological Footprint Accounting: Just like the Family Budget

05/12/2010 06:48 PM

The Ecological Footprint can be understood as simply as a family budget, according to a new video released by the Community of Andean Nations (CAN).

The CAN and its member nations – Ecuador, Colombia, Bolivia and Peru – began working with Global Footprint Network in early 2009 on an initiative to maintain one of the CAN region’s richest and most important assets: its natural resource base. The initiative seeks to demonstrate the interdependence between a country’s natural wealth, its economic health and, ultimately, the well-being of its people.

As part of the initiative, the CAN recently launched a video, to be circulated online and in television media, that explains this lofty concept in terms almost any family can relate to. “It’s as if a family needed to adjust expenditures because of having another child,” the video explains, “yet nevertheless, in spite of these forces, the family continued to spend more money.” Now, however, the video says, the CAN is working to address that situation –  in particular Ecuador, which has adopted specific Ecological Footprint reduction goals.

The CAN has also released a preview version of a report on the Ecological Footprint of the CAN countries that it will release with Global Footprint Network in 2010. The teaser, which introduces people to the concept of the Ecological Footprint and provides a snapshot of the data, can be downloaded here in English and Spanish. The longer report will provide an in-depth look at the ecological trends in each of the member countries, along with perspectives and commentary by in-country experts.

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