On 19th May 2022, the UK reached Earth Overshoot Day. Using data processed by the Global Footprint Network, this date signifies when the world would use up all the natural resources that the planet renews in one year, if everybody consumed as we do in the UK. In other words, we would need 2.6 planet Earths just to regenerate our demands from nature. And that’s just the UK. Some countries’ Earth Overshoot Day for 2022 are earlier, while others are later – Qatar for instance has an Earth Overshoot Day of February 10th, while Jamaica’s is December 20th.
More than 80% of people live in countries that demand more from the natural world than it can renew. These figures are calculated via ‘ecological footprint accounting’, which measures a population’s demands on the environment. Ecological footprints include food consumption, carbon emissions and the taking of natural resources such as timber and fibre including cotton. This is then assessed against the country’s biocapacity, which gives a measurement of a region’s ecological assets on land and water. Some countries, such as Brazil, have larger ecological reserves thanks to its many rainforests, for instance.
The Global Footprint Network has had access to data going back to 1961 and now provides footprint and biocapacity information for approximately 200 countries. With 80% of countries ecologically in the red we need to take global action now. So how can we help?
How to #MoveTheDate
The good news is there are plenty of ways we can bring our countries out of the red and into the green. All around the world, Earth Overshoot Day is looking to improve our futures by celebrating 100 Days of Possibility to help the planet #MoveTheDate.
Just one of the ways you can get involved at home is to end single-use plastic and switch to reuse and refill systems, such as Bower refill packs. According to the campaign, banishing single-use plastic would reduce the carbon emission associated with the material and #MoveTheDate of Earth Overshoot Day. It would also hugely reduce the quantities of plastic entering our oceans, not to mention the leakage of chemicals found in plastic packaging getting into our food and the environment.
Bower makes it easy to reuse and refill at home with special refill pouches made in the UK – close to home to reduce carbon emissions – for a sustainable and environmentally friendly household. Products include bestselling personal care refills, including our refillable Uplifting Orange Body Wash bundle, Bower Lemongrass & Jojoba Hand Cream in screwtop glass bottles and refillable Grapefruit & Lemongrass Sanitising Hand Gel.
It’s easy to reduce plastic waste when cleaning the home too, with Bower Grapefruit Washing Up Liquid Refills and Lavender Laundry Liquid Refills both coming in our special BowerPack, a reusable pouch with unique digital tracking and impact measurement built in.
Making small, effective and affordable changes at home will lead to greater change for our planet. Other ways you can make a difference include: wearing clothes that are part of circular fashion, which reduces precious natural resources and recycles pre-consumer materials to reduce waste; taking holidays closer to home to reduce air travel emissions; and using lending libraries to borrow tools, sports equipment and more to reduce your household’s consumption of these items and preserve the resources needed to create them. If you’re passionate about the planet, there’s plenty you can do.