When it comes to gobbling up natural resources, we humans are exceptionally gifted. Monday, August 8, is Earth Overshoot Day, a downer of a holiday that keeps creeping up earlier on our calendars, arriving five days earlier than last year.
The Global Footprint Network tracks the point in the year when we’ve used more of the important stuff that sustains life — you know, water, trees, fish — than nature’s ability to regenerate those resources.
And we’ve still got 145 days left to go.
Here’s how our collective footprint (red line) compares to Earth’s ability to cope with that demand (green line) over the past half century.
We started overshooting our budget in 1971, and we’ve widened the deficit ever since. Give yourselves a pat on the back, humanity!
Check out Grist’s video on Earth Overshoot Day last year, which explains consumption habits in terms you can understand — caffeine addiction.