At the current rate humanity is using natural resources and producing waste, by the mid-2030s we will require the resources of two planets to meet our demands, according to figures released today by Global Footprint Network. The data comes at a critical time, as the economic crisis felt around the globe has made it painstakingly clear: Debt and overspending can continue for a while but ultimately have dire consequences.
As the world grapples with the escalating effects of the financial crisis, Global Footprint Network reported on another mounting – and unsecured – debt: a growing gap in India between the amount of natural resources the country uses and how much it has.
On September 23rd this year we mark an unfortunate milestone: As of today, humanity will have consumed all the new resources the planet will produce this year, according to Global Footprint Network calculations. For the rest of 2008, we will be in the ecological equivalent of deficit depending, drawing down our resource stocks – in essence, borrowing from the future.
China’s Ecological Footprint has quadrupled in the last four decades, with the country now demanding more from the planet than any nation except the United States, according to a report released last month by Global Footprint Network, WWF China, and CCICED (China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development), a Chinese government advisory group.
In the last 50 years, China has soared from being one of the more moderate consumers of the planet’s resources to one of the largest, according to the Report on Ecological Footprint in China, presented on June 10, 2008 in Beijing. The report’s findings underscore the crucial role China will play in addressing the major resource challenges humanity faces in the 21st century.
While Africans per capita consume very little of the world’s biological resources, Africa’s growing population is bringing the region close to reaching it’s ecological limits, according to a groundbreaking report that Global Footprint Network, in conjunction with WWF, presented on June 9, 2008 at the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment in Johannesburg.
If everyone lived like you, how many Earths would it take to support your lifestyle? This Earth Day, Global Footprint Network is pleased to announce a new video and Footprint Calculator for the U.S., two tools to help Americans see how their living habits relate to their use of the planet’s resources.
A One Planet Life
What is your Ecological Footprint?
What can you do to get closer to living within the means of one planet? We’ve built this Ecological Footprint calculator to help you find out. Built in partnership with Free Range Studios (creators of the viral film the Meatrix and The Story of Stuff), the calculator is the latest phase of Global Footprint Network’s rollout of a global calculator that will provide people around the world with an interactive, informative tool for exploring and reducing their Footprints. An Australia calculator was launched in March, and a Canadian version is planned for later this year.
Global Footprint Network is inviting corporate, government, and NGO partners to help launch the calculator world-wide. The calculator can be customized for specific organizations and geographical areas. Please contact Susan Burns if you would like to be involved or would like the calculator customized for your organization.