What is Earth Overshoot Day?
Planet Earth. Our home, which protects us from space and provides us with the land to live on. Earth is a world unlike any other and the only place in the known universe confirmed to inhabit life. However, we the people of Earth, are utilising its natural resources more than ever and let us not forget, Earth can only regenerate its resources at a finite rate. So why are we observing Earth Overshoot Day today, on July 28th?
What happens on Earth Overshoot Day?
This is a day for all of us to reconsider our own lifestyles and use of the Earthâ€™s natural resources. It was introduced by Andrew Simms in 2006, who in partnership with the Global Footprint Network, looked to raise awareness about the resource shortage our modern lifestyles are creating. Andrew, a well publicised author and research associate for the Centre for Global Political Economy, at our near neighbours, the University of Sussex, has been educating individuals on the small but significant changes we can all make to help stop the landslide effect of global warming. Andrew isnâ€™t the only one though, and in recent years the teenage climate activist, Greta Thunberg, hit out at those in power celebrating the global annual event known as â€˜Earth Dayâ€™ while in her words they were simultaneously â€œdestroying itâ€. Love her or hate her, Greta has a point. And at just eight years of age it is said that upon learning of Earth's overshoots, she immediately changed her own habits, becoming vegan and refusing to travel by plane.
Why is it important for us to change Earth's overshoot?
For many years now, we have all been over-exploiting Mother Earthâ€™s resources and taking them for granted. Let us not forget that even the best renewable resources still require time to renew. At present, our daily activities are creating massive complications for life on Earth and our usage rate is significantly higher than our renewal rate. Sea levels have been slowly rising for many years now too, and if the ongoing conflict between the Ukraine and Russia descended into a third World War, there is no doubting what the nuclear effects alone could have on our planet - some experts have already stated it could take us back to the ice age!
How can I reduce my own ecological overshoot?
There are many small and simple changes we can all take, which can have a huge and positive effect upon our planet. One of the easiest to start with is by refusing plastic as much as you can every day. In recent years the world has become far better educated in the waste that disposable and single use plastics create. So why not make the switch to reusable items, such as
, a reusable
and reusable shopping bags. The meat industry is another major source of greenhouse gas emissions, along with other issues such as animal welfare. Greta Thunberg knew this, which is why she turned
, and therefore reduced her own ecological footprint by enjoying plant-based meals. You may even choose to reduce your
product waste by buying reusables, such as
Ecoegg Bamboo Towels
The Cheeky Panda Bamboo Toilet Paper
. And if youâ€™re not already doing so, be sure to make sure you recycle as much as you can. Recycling reduces air & water pollution, as well as helps to conserve planet Earthâ€™s resources by saving space in our already overcrowded landfills. Every local council in the UK has a place where you can take your recycling too, many will even collect it for you. And finally if you have a car, ask yourself do you really need it? Cars are expensive to run these days. The constant hikes in fuel prices, not to mention taxes and MOTâ€™s. Cars release many pollutants into the air and our oceans too, so if you can walk to your destination when running errands, or even take the train, try it because not only will it be better for the environment, it will be better for your own health too. However, if you really do rely on your car, and have the means to do so, switch to an electric vehicle.