We are using the Earth’s renewable resources, such as energy, clean water and air, healthy soils etc. at a rate 1.7 times that the Earth can renew them!
So, what’s the big deal?
Earth Overshoot day is the date in which resource consumption exceeds the Earth’s capacity to regenerate those resources. This year it occurred on July 29th, and this date has been creeping earlier and earlier.
It is estimated that by 2050, 5 billion people will live in water-stressed regions and that 70% more food will be needed, yet food supply is under threat from multiple factors, including shortage of fresh water, soil depletion, decimated populations of insect pollinators and climate change. While land is cleared and greenery is cut down to make way for growing cities, the first culprit is agriculture who uses it to grow feed for animals and clear land for pasture. The current rate of deforestation is the same size as losing 20 football fields every minute.
What can you do?
- The biggest thing you can do at home to cut down resource use is to rethink you purchasing habits. So next time you’re out shopping, stop and think and only buy what you need. If you are going to buy something new, make it an investment piece so that it will last for much longer!
- As much as making a meal plan might seem boring, planning your grocery list can reduce food waste. Every time we throw away some food, we are also wasting all the land, water and energy use that’s gone into growing and transporting it!
- As the days get colder and the nights get freezing, a long, hot shower may tick all the boxes, but a shorter shower can save a lot of water and energy and means you get slightly longer in bed!