Ecological Footprint Image LightGreen Footprint Network News
Issue 50, April 22, 2016  


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About Global Footprint Network
 
Our mission is to promote a sustainable economy by advancing the Ecological Footprint, a measurement tool that makes the reality of planetary limits relevant to decision-makers.
 
 

 
Advisory Council
 
E.O. Wilson
Manfred Max-Neef
Rhodri Morgan
David Suzuki
Emil Salim
Julia Marton-Lefèvre
William E. Rees
Lester Brown
Jorgen Randers
M S Swaminathan
Daniel Pauly
Eric Garcetti
Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker
Michael Meacher
Karl-Henrik Robèrt
Will Steffen
Dominique Voynet
Fabio Feldman
Oscar Arias
Peter Raven
Mick Bourke
Norman Myers
Gus Speth
Stephen Groff
Thomas E. Lovejoy
 
 

Did you know trees bear 70% of humanity's Ecological Footprint?


With our partner Earth Day Network, we’re happy to give trees a special nod today. At Global Footprint Network, we have a soft spot for trees and forests. They are an essential pool of biodiversity. And they are one of our most important ecological assets: Seventy percent of humanity’s Ecological Footprint is comprised of demand for forest products (paper, timber, etc.) and carbon capture, an ecological service that forests provide. Forests have been slowly but steadily losing to encroaching human activity. But there is some good news: Some countries are reversing the trend. Click here for more information and graphs

 
Taking action ahead of Earth Overshoot Day
   

Dear Footprint Friends,

Earth Day is about celebrating the wondrous planet that sustains us. It’s also the perfect day to take a moment to reflect on our relationship with the Earth. Here’s the scoop: On August 8, 2016, we will have used as much from nature as our planet can renew in the whole year. That’s right, Earth Overshoot Day will land just 108 days from now. This means we will consume 67 percent more ecological resources and services than nature can renew this year, through overfishing, deforestation and emitting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than forests can sequester. The consequences of this "overshoot" include shrinking biodiversity, collapsed fisheries, eroded topsoil and climate change.

But we are still optimistic, and here’s why: The world is on the cusp of positive change. Last December, 195 nations and the European Union pledged to combat climate change as part of a historic UN agreement in Paris. Today, on Earth Day, UN delegates are officially signing the Paris climate change agreement at a high-level ceremony in New York City. In addition, the United Nations launched global goals to achieve humanity’s collective dream—sustainable development—last September.

If there ever was a time to roll up our sleeves and take action…that time is now. Ahead of Earth Overshoot Day, let’s act to reverse the trend of overshooting our planet’s resources.

Here’s our invitation to you: Join us and take part in our action campaign to pledge for the planet, as a citizen and as a consumer. Make small or big lifestyle choices. Get involved in supporting systemic change. Help create a future where planet and people thrive. Use your voice on social media to spread the word that we can start now to build a world that our children’s children will want to live in.

We will be regularly introducing new action items for you to consider over the next few months — choose the ones that resonate with you the most and that you’ll be excited telling your friends about. Keep an eye on our newsletter and Facebook Event community for details!

Sincerely,

Ronna Kelly
Communications Director
Global Footprint Network





 
Mark Earth Day by joining new membership program
   

As we mark this 46th anniversary of Earth Day, we are excited to launch a new membership program to support our work creating a future where people, planet and economies thrive. Please join today.

For over 10 years, with the support of people like you, we have been actively engaged in protecting our environment through measuring and managing our environmental resources and empowering communities to change our future in many ways, including:

  • empowering people in typhoon-prone Philippines to make new choices to protect their lakes, rivers, and forests;
  • emboldening villagers in Odisha, India, to protect their farmland and forests; and
  • collaborating with decisions makers in the mountainous province of Guizhou, China, to support a prosperous economy while protecting their natural resources and improving the well being of the people.

As a member, you will receive information about positive solutions to protecting our planet including: environmental sustainability updates; an inside scoop on innovative environmental sustainability solutions; a forum to share information and ideas; and tips on reducing your Ecological Footprint. Please sign up today!

 
Art exhibit explores human impact on our planet
   

Today our partner, Art Works for Change debuts Part II of "Footing the Bill: Art and Our Ecological Footprint," which showcases artists' explorations of our delicate relationship with the natural world and the collective need to live within the means of one Earth.

Part II of the exhibition is presented in an innovative digital format that combines stunning images with unique, interactive features. Each artwork is paired with a series of pledges or actions that individuals can take in their own lives to reduce their environmental impact. Check out Global Footprint Network's virtual "tour" and share your pledges and the artwork that inspired them with your social networks. The exhibition will be promoted with the hashtags #EndOvershoot and #OneEarth.

 
Momentum building in Finance for Change Initiative
   

Save the date for May 18 for our event presenting new research on environmental risk in sovereign debt at Standard & Poor’s offices in London. This new research, phase II of our ERISC work, examines the linkages between global food price shocks and country risk, by stress testing the macroeconomic impacts of a price shock on 110 countries. A ranking of countries will help inform investment decisions for bond investors and investment priorities for governments and multilateral institutions.

The event also will feature a panel with partner organizations discussing their research on climate change and sovereign bonds. Register for the event here.

ERISC (short for Environmental Risk Integration in Sovereign Credit) is a joint research project of Global Footprint Network and UNEP FI that aims to facilitate the full integration of environmental risks into investor decision-making. This new round of research was developed in collaboration with Standard & Poor’s, HSBC, European Investment Bank, Caisse des Dépôts (France), Colonial First State (Australia), KfW (Germany), Kempen (Netherlands), and Cambridge Econometrics (UK).

To further support investors and pave the way for more disclosure, we’re also excited to announce that we’ve just launched our Carbon Disclosure Working Group, which includes BlackRock (US), MN (asset owner in the Netherlands), Alliance Bernstein (US), Petercam (Belgium), and Vescore (Switzerland).The group is working with us to provide guidance to the industry on best practices for carbon and climate risk disclosure in sovereign bonds and will release its findings this summer.

Finally, Global Footprint Network Co-founder Susan Burns, director of the Finance for Change initiative, will present the preliminary findings of the working group to members of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change in London on June 16.

 
Can you guess this country?
   

On 11 April, this country busted its annual ecological budget—its citizens' demand for food, wood and carbon dioxide absorption will begin to exceed what the country's ecosystems can renew over the full year. Trade is a fact of life in our globalized economy, but just as a trade deficit can be a risk, so can an ecological deficit.

This country is known for its cuisine, a favorite by many. Its territory includes mountains, high plateaus, sandy deserts, dense forests and is home to the world's third largest river.

Now, can you identify this nation?

Find the answer by clicking here.