The human population is fully
capable of liquidating the ecological capacity of the Earth. In
other words, we are using up our natural resources by consuming
them 23% faster than they can regenerate.
What's even more alarming, is that we are also devastating the
Earth's supply of Renewable Resources due to deforestation, carbon-induced
climate change, and fisheries and groundwater depletion.
The balance between what humans consume and the rate by which
the Earth can regenerate what we consume is called Sustainability.
In order to know how much water, land, minerals and other natural
resources we must regenerate to restore the planet, an inventory
of what is spent must be kept.
The Ecological Footprint helps to inventory the use of the Earth's
equity by measuring an individual's, a city's or a nation's ecological
In 1961, the world's population used half of the Earth's biocapacity.
Since 1961, it has used over one and a half times the Earth's
biocapacity. This means, the population of the Earth actually
requires one entire extra planet Earth to sustain its demands