Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Start the Clock. We're In Overshoot.

From now until midnight, New Year's Eve, mankind will be exceeding the ecological carrying capacity of Earth, our one and only biosphere, Spaceship Earth if you like. That's 151 days plus change and that's a lot of time to be drawing down on our planet's reserves of natural resources.

August 2nd this year, Earth Overshoot Day. That means EOD 2018 will bring us up another notch into July.

How do we do it? That's easy. It's sleight of hand, conjuring tricks. The combined forces of steadily growing overpopulation and over-consumption, bring Overshoot Day earlier every year. That means our drawdown on the planet's resource reserves, our deficit, grows commensurately greater every year.

How does this end? Not well, not until mankind's numbers and consumption plummet enough to restore some balance with Earth's ecological carrying capacity. Until then it's going to be a struggle and that's already underway for the world's little people anyway. They're poor and they're vulnerable and they're decidedly not white. Think of them as unpaid ecological sin-eaters.


Lorne said...

How did e ever grow such a sense of self-entitlement that the world's limitations mean nothing to us, Mound? Perhaps Nature will, however, have the final say:

The Mound of Sound said...

How do people who are supposedly educated, sane and responsible come to believe that perpetual, exponential growth is feasible on this very finite planet?

How did we fail to see Earth as our spaceship, our planet hurtling through our solar system, our solar system hurtling through our galaxy and our galaxy hurtling through our universe at a combined speed that's unimaginable? Where do we think we are?

How did we think we didn't need planetary guard rails? It seems mad to me.

Toby said...

As I understand it, sperm-counts are declining in the developed world but not in the places with rapidly expanding populations.

As to the self-entitlement of humans, just review the extermination of various species for sport or to clear land or fish till they are no longer, etc. Cod, passenger pigeons, dodos, bison, whales, etc. Whatever it is, humans assume we have a right to kill it and/or use it however we choose.

The Mound of Sound said...

It always comes back to the theory of intelligent life being self-extinguishing.