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Ecological footprint

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An ecological footprint measures how much people take from nature. The footprint is then compared to the amount of natural resources nature can renew. The ecological footprint takes into account how much farm land, forest area, grazing land and sea area it takes to provide everything people use[1]. More simply, footprint calculations answer the questions: how much nature do we have? And how much do we use?

When analyzing the world as a whole, humanity is using nature about 1.7 times faster than nature renews itself.[2] It is like using 1.5 planet Earths. Since people consume differently around the world, it is also possible to calculate how many planet it would take if everybody around the world consumed like a particular population. For instance, if everybody consumed like the Germans, it would take nearly 3 planet Earths. Another estimate says "the average world citizen has an eco-footprint of about 2.7 global average hectares while there are only 1.65 global hectare of bioproductive land and water per capital on earth. This means that humanity has already overshot global biocapacity by 70% and now lives unsustainably by depleting stocks of "natural capital".[3]

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