What is the ecological footprint?

The ecological footprint is one of the most comprehensive methods to measure the environmental impact of a person or population, it is expressed in square meters, and indicates how much of the planet is needed to regenerate the resources consumed and to dispose the waste .

The larger this area, the greater is the environmental impact of the individual or the population considered. The ecological footprint includes the area needed for agriculture and grazing, the fish production, the greenhouse gases absorption, housing and infrastructure and ensuring biodiversity.

The ecological footprint can also be expressed in terms of planet earth needed, assuming that the entire world population has ecological footprint equal to that of the person or population measured. To say that the ecological footprint of a person is equal to three planet earth is to say that, if the entire population had lifestyle equal to that of the measured person, 3 planets earth are needed for a keep it alive in a sustainable way over time.

Already, the ecological footprint of the population world average is well above the sustainability level, because every year we consume resources at a much higher rate than the one the planet can regenerate., cutting forests, consuming aquifers, polluting seas. It means that right now the world’s population is drawing on nature reserves to meet their needs, going beyond the level that nature can regenerate.

Renewables are one of the solutions that can help solve the problem. We must found similar solutions in all fields to avoid continuing to undermine the natural heritage.

E’ come se in una famiglia ogni mese le spese fossero superiori al reddito, e, per mantenersi, la famiglia andasse ad intaccare mensilmente il patrimonio e i risparmi. Per esempio, per produrre energia utilizziamo principalmente combustibili fossili che si sono formati in milioni di anni e che già si stanno iniziando ad esaurire dopo poco più di un secolo di consumo intensivo. Le fonti rinnovabili sono una delle soluzioni che possono aiutare a risolvere il problema. Vanno trovate e perseguite soluzioni analoghe in tutti i campi per evitare di continuare ad intaccare il patrimonio naturale. E bisogna evitare gli sprechi e modificare le nostre abitudini meno sane per noi e per il pianeta.