Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Fans and players react online to Arsene Wegner's club departure

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Syria alleged chemical attack: Gunfire delays deployment of weapons inspectors

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Cashing in on local French currencies

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

Life on the canals of northern France

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

What lies ahead for Cuba after the Castros?

Read more

#TECH 24

Discovering and harnessing the power of the sun

Read more

DOWN TO EARTH

Can France bid 'adieu' to popular weedkiller glyphosate?

Read more

#THE 51%

Harmful for your health: When gender bias affects medical diagnosis

Read more

REPORTERS

Africa’s donkeys slaughtered for Chinese ‘miracle elixir’

Read more

France

Earth’s resources used up at quickest rate ever in 2016

© NASA, AFP | This image obtained December 2, 2015 from NASA shows the Sun’s light reflected off a body of water as the International Space Station orbits Earth.

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-08-07

In just over seven months, humanity has used up a full year's allotment of natural resources such as water, food and clean air – the quickest rate yet, according to a new report.

The point of "overshoot" will officially be reached on Monday, said environmental group Global Footprint Network -- five days earlier than last year.

"We continue to grow our ecological debt," said Pascal Canfin of green group WWF, reacting to the annual update.

"From Monday August 8, we will be living on credit because in eight months we would have consumed the natural capital that our planet can renew in a year."

The gloomy milestone is marked every year on what is known as Earth Overshoot Day.

In 1993, the day fell on October 21, in 2003 on September 22 and last year on August 13.

In 1961, according to the network, humankind used only about three-quarters of Earth's annual resource allotment. By the 1970s, economic and population growth sent Earth into annual overshoot.

"This is possible because we emit more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than our oceans and forests can absorb, and we deplete fisheries and harvest forests more quickly than they can reproduce and regrow," the network said in a statement.

To calculate the date for Earth Overshoot Day, the group crunches UN data on thousands of economic sectors such as fisheries, forestry, transport and energy production.

Earth-warming greenhouse gas emissions, it said, are now the fastest-growing contributor to ecological overshoot, making up 60 percent of humanity's demands on nature -- what is called the ecological "footprint".

According to the UN, the number of people on Earth is forecast to grow from 7.3 billion today to 11.2 billion by the end of the century -- piling further pressure on our planet and its finite resources.

But there was some good news, too.

"The rate at which Earth Overshoot Day has moved up on the calendar has slowed to less than one day a year on average over the past five years, compared to an average of three days a year since the overshoot began in the 1970s," said the network.

(AFP)

Date created : 2016-08-07

  • PARIS

    Seine continues to rise in Paris amid deadly European flooding

    Read more

  • Environment - Health

    Air pollution is the 'greatest environmental risk to health', UN report says

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    In pictures: Pedestrians take over the Champs-Elysées in Paris

    Read more

COMMENT(S)