Humanity has again used up all biological resources that our planet regenerates during the entire year by July 29, 2021, according to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). Earth Overshoot Day marks the date when humanity’s demand for ecological resources and services in a given year exceeds what Earth can regenerate in that year. This year, the date is July 29.
Earth Overshoot Day is hosted and calculated by Global Footprint Network, an international research organization that provides decision-makers with a menu of tools to help the human economy operate within Earth’s ecological limits.
A press statement by the WWF noted that: Humanity currently uses 74 per cent more than what the planet’s ecosystems can regenerate — or 1.7 Earths. From Earth Overshoot Day until the end of the year, humanity operates on ecological deficit spending.
This spending was currently some of the largest since the world entered into ecological overshoot in the early 1970s, according to the National Footprint & Biocapacity Accounts based on UN datasets, the statement added.
The Global Footprint Network found that the total global ecological footprint increased by 6.6% compared to 2020, based on data from the International Energy Agency and the Global Carbon Project.
Last year, the global forest biocapacity — the natural resources in forests — decreased by 0.5%, mainly due to a large spike in deforestation in the Amazon rainforest. Forests are a key to slowing climate change because they can store carbon for long periods of time.