We are just halfway through the year, and humanity has already used up all the resources the Earth can sustainably produce. From now on, we are borrowing from the future.
As Anne-Sophie Brändlin and Alistair Walsh reports for DW, by July 28, humanity will have used up all the natural resources that the Earth can sustainably regenerate. For the rest of the year, mankind will be inflicting an unsustainable toll on the planet, according to the calculations for Earth Overshoot Day.
“It’s like if you spent all your money by July 28, and then the year you live off deficit spending. It’s actually even more serious because with money, you can print or borrow it. With resources, we can borrow from the future as well, but we cannot print them,” Global Footprint Network Founder and President Mathis Wackernagel told DW.
His organization calculates Earth Overshoot Day by factoring in how much we consume, how efficiently products are made, how many people are draining resources and how much nature can regenerate.
At the current rate, humanity would need three-quarters of another planet to feed the current rate of resource use. Wackernagel said this overconsumption is the underlying cause behind many of the planet’s current woes. According to him, if everyone lived like Americans, the date would have been even sooner, on March 13.
Source: DW. Full story here