Earth Overshoot Day

Today is the day in the year when humans consumed more than the Earth can produce in one whole year. Known as Earth Overshoot Day, it shows that in 8 months, we exhausted our planet’s ecological budget for the year.

Like a bank account shows the deficit of income against expenditures, our planet’s account is in firm negative, year after year. Our world would have to be roughly 1.5 times bigger than it is now, to support our consumption. To formulate it differently; we’re consuming 1.5 Earth’s.

The first Earth Overshoot Day, also known as Ecological Debt Day, was on the calendar in 1987, and it was only at December the 19th then. Still, it has moved earlier and earlier since then.┬áIn 1993, it fell on October 21, and in 2003 on September 22, yet this year, it’s August 20.

Given current trends in consumption Earth Overshoot Day arrives a few days earlier each year, yet I do believe we can turn it around, but only if we stop thinking we can rely on technology to save the planet. It’s behavioural change that will, and it will have to come from ourselves.


Overheard at a local car dealer, a little kid to his dad;
‘When I’m going to buy a car, it has to be at least energy label B’.

So I put my hope on that kid, and hope more kids will grow up like that.