What is Earth Overshoot Day and is it getting earlier?

Earth Overshoot Day- Schneider Electric Infographic

In 2018, humans will use up the equivalent of 1.7 Earths.

As a result of this overuse, fisheries are collapsing, freshwater is scarce, soils are being eroded and wildlife is vanishing, while the buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is leading to climate change, more severe droughts, wildfires and hurricanes, the researchers said.

He likened the world's economies to using Earth's future resources to operate in the present and creating a deeper ecological debt.

Today marks 2018's Earth Overshoot Day - and no, it's not a holiday. Cape Town in South Africa is only a year away from running out of water, and many cities in India have already reached that state.

Humanity is now consuming the Earth's natural resources at around 1.7 times faster than they can be naturally replaced - essentially this means an increasingly unsustainable way of life.

According to the Global Footprint Network, we emitted more carbon than the oceans and forests can absorb, we caught more fish, felled more trees, harvested more food, and consumed more water than the Earth is able to produce.

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"These are the consequences of busting the ecological budget of our one and only planet".

Sourcing local food and avoiding highly processed foods is one thing individuals can do to lower their Ecological Footprint.

The day is calculated by dividing the world biocapacity (the amount of natural resources generated by the Earth that year) by the world's ecological footprint (consumption of resources by humans). According to predictions, if the carbon footprint and food waste declines 50 percent and people start to get only the necessary calories, the overreach day will extend to 38 days.

Phosphorus, which is vital to the growth of plants, is also on the decline.

For countries' EF, the annual domestic production of resources such as crops and timber is compared with their consumption by the country's population. This pivotal moment, dubbed Earth Overshoot Day, continues to come earlier and earlier every year. To do so, it uses 15,000 data points collected by the United Nations for each country starting with 1961.

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