CARBON AND ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINTS
A carbon footprint is the total set of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caused directly and indirectly by an individual, organization, event
or product. For simplicity of reporting, it is often expressed in terms of the amount of carbon dioxide, or its equivalent of other GHGs,
emitted. The carbon footprint is a subset of the ecological footprint and of the more comprehensive Life Cycle Assessment (LCA).
Ecological footprint is a metric that allows to calculate human pressure on the earth. This analysis compares human demand on nature
with the biosphere's ability to regenerate resources and provide services. It does this by assessing the biologically productive land and
marine area required to produce the resources a population consumes and absorb the corresponding waste, using prevailing technology.
Today humanity uses the equivalent of 1.3 planets to provide the resources we use and absorb our waste. This means it now takes the
Earth one year and four months to regenerate what we use in a year. Moderate UN scenarios suggest that if current population and
consumption trends continue, by the mid 2030s we will need the equivalent of two Earths to support us. And of course, we only have
Total eco logical footprint of the world is reflected below (published by Global Footprint Network– Global Footprint Accounts
Total Ecological Footprint World 2.7
- High Income Countries 6.4
- Middle Income Countries 2.2
- Low Income Countries 1.0
Total Ecological Footprint -- Break-down by Continents:
- Africa 1.4
- Middle East and Central Asia 2.3
- Asia-Pacific 1.6
- Latin America and the Caribbean 2.4
- North America 9.2
- Canada 7.1
- United States of America 9.4
- Europe (EU) 4.7
- Europe (Non-EU) 3.
How can we reduce our ecological footprint?
Individuals and institutions worldwide must begin to recognize ecological limits. We must begin to make ecological limits central to our
decision-making and use human ingenuity to find new ways to live, within the Earth’s bounds.
This means investing in technology and infrastructure that will allow us to operate in a resource constrained world. It means taking
individual action, and creating the public demand for businesses and policy makers to participate.
Using tools like the Ecological Footprint to manage our ecological assets is essential for humanity’s survival and success. Knowing how
much nature we have, how much we use, and who uses what is the first step, and will allow us to track our progress as we work
toward our goal of sustainable, one-planet living..
Calculate your Ecological Footprint:
How much land area does it take to support your lifestyle? Take this quiz to find out your Ecological Footprint, discover your biggest
areas of resource consumption, and learn what you can do to tread more lightly on the earth. Use footprint network’s calculator: