AUG 17, 2016 9:27 AM PDT

Living on Environmental Credit


Earth Overshoot Day (EOD), or as it used to be known, Ecological Debt Day is the point on the calendar where the consumption of resources by humans has exceeded the amount of resources that can be generated in a year. In a perfect world, the amount of resources the Earth is able to generate would last at least the full year, but that hasn't been the case for some time. The numbers are calculated by dividing the biocapacity, or amount of natural resources created in a year, by the human ecological footprint, or consumption, and then multiplying it by 365.

From an economic viewpoint, the planet is essentially living on credit once the day is reached. In 1987, it was reached on December 19th. In 2016, the mark was hit on August 8th. The effect of running out of resources earlier and earlier each year takes a cumulative toll on the planet. Greenhouse gas emissions from travel and transport account for much of it. Eating more meat is a problem as well since resources to raise cattle and other livestock create a larger carbon footprint. Organizations like the UN and the WHO have called for more conservation measures to hopefully push the date further into the later months of the year and stop its progression into earlier days.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
MAR 10, 2020
Space & Astronomy
MAR 10, 2020
NASA's OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Inadvertently Discovered a Black Hole
NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission, a short and sweet acronym for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification ...
MAR 13, 2020
Cardiology
MAR 13, 2020
Heart Cancer, A Rarity
Cardiac tumors are generally considered rare, happening in only one in 500 cardiac surgery cases. These growths are ofte ...
MAR 16, 2020
Space & Astronomy
MAR 16, 2020
What Would it Take to Visit Alpha Centauri?
Humankind has long pondered upon the ambition of becoming a multiplanetary species. While much of our realistic focus re ...
APR 15, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
APR 15, 2020
Pandemic Maths: Why Time Doesn't Matter in Understanding Infection Trajectory
There's no doubt that a lot of our current attention goes to the COVID-19 infection cases, as media outlets publish ...
APR 28, 2020
Space & Astronomy
APR 28, 2020
NASA's Swift Telescope Measured the Water Loss of This Interstellar Comet
When the interstellar comet 2l/Borisov made its first appearance in our solar system, astronomers were quick to turn the ...
APR 30, 2020
Earth & The Environment
APR 30, 2020
NASA's Laser Satellites Help Scientists Quantify Sea Ice Loss
Global climate change is melting Earth’s ice, and a recent study from NASA details how the polar ice sheets have c ...
Loading Comments...