We only have one Earth that is filled with natural resources, beautiful forests, fields, and rivers. The problem is that we are abusing the resources as if we have more than one Earth. That is what Earth Overshoot Day is all about: make the world realize that we are becoming our own extinction.
In this guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about Earth Overshoot Day and what are our responsibilities to overcome this problem. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
What is Earth Overshoot Day?
Earth Overshoot Day marks the date when humans have consumed all the resources that our planet Earth is capable of generating in a one-year time frame. Here’s how you can calculate the Earth Overshoot Day:
Earth Overshoot Day = (Planet’s Biocapacity / Humanity’s Ecological Footprint) X 365
After the available resources are consumed, the global economy is considered to be operating in the Ecological Deficit. Currently, humanity uses a total of 74 Percent more resources than the Earth can generate in a year.
One of the main causes of this is the pressure that humanity is putting on Earth. Deforestation, overfishing, and overharvesting all the resources are some of the principal causes.
To give you an example of Global Forest biocapacity, a total of 0.5 Percent has been reduced in the past year due to the spike in Amazon Deforestation. Just alone in Brazil, more than 1.1 million hectares were lost in the year 2020. Moreover, it is indicated that the rate will go up to 43 Percent Per year in deforestation.
29th July- Earth Overshoot Day 2021
Last year, the Overshoot Daytook place on 22 August due to the drop in Carbon emission. This was a result of the world being in lockdown due to the pandemic. On the other hand, if we look at the year 2021, Earth Overshoot Day was on the 29th of July. This means, that we have already used all of the resources our planet had to offer this year. From the first day of this year to 29th July, our demand is equivalent to the resources of 1.7 Earths.
The main drivers for the Earth Overshoot day this year are the Carbon Footprints. According to the National Institute For Space Research in Brazil, there is main reason for the increase in Carbon Footprints. The Amazon forest has now started to emit more carbon dioxide than it absorbs. Before, the forest was a carbon sink and absorbed emission driving the climate crisis, but now the emission has been accelerated to a whole new level.
Earth Overshoot Differs from Country to country
Every country produces a different amount of resources in a calendar year. The amount of carbon footprint or biocapacity also differs from place to place. This is why each country has a different overshoot day.
According to the Global Footprint data, Qatar was the first country to reach its overshoot day: the 9th of February. In comparison, São Tome and Príncipe will reach overshoot day the last i.e 27th December 2021.
Solution to #MoveTheDate
#MoveTheDate is a campaign launched by the International community with the main goal to provide awareness among the countries. The goal is to use the Earth’s resources in a way that the Earth Overshoot Day date is closer to 31st December.
Greening our economies is a great way to start to move the date and bring balance within the Earth. According to GFN, if we reforest an area equal to the size of India, the Earth Overshoot day would move probably eight days.
We can also focus on retrofitting the buildings and industries that have energy-saving technology in different places. Being water conservation controls, sensors that control light, temperature, and air quality. This would bring back the date of the Earth Overshoot Day by approximately 21 days, which is quite fascinating.
Food is one of the critical areas that we need to work on. Most of our food is lost due to inefficiencies during the production process or waste. If we talk numbers, more than 30 to 40 Percent of food in the US ends up in the landfills every year, according to GFN. If we eliminate the food loss/waste and choose foods grown with a sustainable agriculture process, we could add at least a month to the Earth’s biocapacity account.
What can we do?
As a responsible citizen and lover of the planet Earth, there are a number of things that you can do to change the situation.
- For instance, we can download the WWF Guide that gives people eco-tips on how they can buy seafood, fruits, vegetables, and even souvenirs in order to bring sustainability to nature.
- There is another program named Yuka that we can follow; the program aims to inform people about the content of food and cosmetic products. In short, it guides towards healthier consumption by using less and fewer resources.
- Holding virtual events can also contribute to the cause and help reduce the wastage of resources. One of the biggest reasons for the increase in the carbon footprint is traveling; Global Aviation accounts for 1.9 Percent of Greenhouse gas emissions and 2.5 Percent of Carbon Dioxide Emissions. This means even when you are holding a physical event to talk about the Overshoot day, 170 Kgs of CO2 is emitted per day by an average conference attendee. However, if you hold your event online, the carbon footprint will be smaller as the attendees would not have to travel worldwide to attend the virtual event.
This is where the SCOOCS comes in; it can help you host successful online virtual events with its easy-to-use Features. The platform is a perfect tool to host online virtual meetings as it allows the users to register the participants in no time and helps host customized events just like the Earth Overshoot Day with ease.
Most of the wealthier countries are leading the way in resource use; for instance, US Overshoot Day falls on the 14th of March. If every country behaves like the US, there is a chance that Earth Overshoot Day will fall just around the 19th of May. Whereas on the other hand, if every country lives like Indonesia, the Overshoot day will fall just around the last or the second last week of the year.
This alarming situation suggests that we should find a way in which we can meet our needs without compromising future generations’ resources. This is the only way we can protect our planet Earth and bring sustainability to nature.
Do you want to learn more about how digital events are saving the planet? Click on the button to learn more!