What is the Overshoot Day?
To understand what is the Overshoot Day, we must first understand the difference between ecological footprint and biocapacity.
The ecological footprint is the land and sea surface needed to produce the resources we use. (food, wood, seafood …) In addition, biocapacity is the biologically productive surface that is available to provide the goods and services we need (forest, fishing area, crop and pasture).
Each year, the World Overshoot Day is calculated by the Global Foot Print Network. It represents to the date when the ecological footprint of humanity exceeds the biocapacity of the planet. That means, the day when Humanity will have exhausted the amount of resources that the Earth can renew in the year.
Is this date fixed?
Since the 1970s, the ecological deficit is growing and this date is only advancing. Thus, in 1978, the overshoot day was on November the 8th. In 1988, the planet had exhausted its resources on October the 16th. In 1997, it was on September the 30th. Ten years ago, this day was on August the 16th.
This day is very important because according to WWF, “nature is not a deposit in which we can extract indefinitely”. Our overconsumption of resources is also visible today: drought, loss of agricultural capacity and deforestation.
How to make it back?
Date of the Overshoot Day 1969-2018
Many effective actions to set up everyday will make this day back.
1) Change our eating habits.
The environmental cost of meat production is much higher than that of plants. The first solution is to reduce meat consumption. For example, in China, the government is committed to reducing meat consumption by 50%.
2) Reduce your energy consumption.
Several reflexes are to take such as using a bike or clean his email box with Cleanfox. These are all datas that will not be stored unnecessarily for several years on servers and therefore as much energy saved.
3) Change urban life.
In 2050, between 70-80% of the population will live in the city. To stem this increase, smart cities are being built. They use renewable energies, offer sustainable public transport for all and build their buildings with isolated materials.
Thus, if we go back every year this 4.5 days, by adopting these daily gestures, we will be in equilibrium in 2050.
Read more: Rare Metals: Pollution Key Figures