Earth Overshoot Day 2020

Each year, the Global Footprint Network calculates ‘Earth Overshoot Day’, the day when humanity’s consumption of natural resources exceeds what the earth can regenerate within that year.

The changing date of Earth Overshoot Day provides a marker of our increasingly unsustainable ecological footprint (our demand for natural resources). When the Earth Overshoot campaign was  first launched in 2006, Earth Overshoot Day fell in October. This year, we will have overshot the earth’s capacity by 22nd August.

Humanity’s ecological footprint encompasses our demand for food and fibre, livestock and fish, forest and other forestry products, space for building, and forest capacity to absorb carbon dioxide. Our ecological footprint in 2020 has in fact been reduced by around 9.3% compared to 2019, due to the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic driving down production and consumption. However, as the Global Footprint Network highlights, this is short-term and not sustainable.

To close the ever-widening ecological deficit and enable future generations to thrive, we must adapt to more efficient ways of meeting humanity’s demand for energy, materials, and services. The circular economy concept presents a solution to this. The principals of the circular economy include designing out waste, keeping materials in circulation, and regenerating natural capital, enabling the transition to an economy that operates within the boundaries of the planet.

Already there are numerous examples out there of businesses around the globe who have adopted more ‘circular’ business models, cutting their ecological footprint:

More locally, the Chamber Low Carbon Circular Economy Club was launched last year to kickstart the expansion of a circular economy in Lancashire. The group aims to bring together businesses and local actors, to enable the sharing of ideas and services. If you’re a business looking to adopt a more circular business model, have already achieved a circular business model, or are simply interested in learning from or bringing new ideas to the group, then join our Chamber Low Carbon Circular Economy Club Linked In group: Furthermore, head over there to read the article we’ve posted on the circular economy concept, and businesses in Lancashire who have already embraced circular business models.