Just like last year, Earth Overshoot Day will once again fall on
29th July. This indicates the day of the year on which human demand for
renewable resources exceeds Earth’s supply and capacity to regenerate these
resources. In other words, on this day, humanity has used all of the ecological
resources available for the current year and is living on credit from that point
on. We maintain this deficit by liquidating stocks of resources and
accumulating carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. From 29th July,
we would therefore need a second Earth to support our consumption.
Calculating the EOS
The EOS is easy to work out: global ecological footprint is divided
by global biocapacity for the year. The ecological footprint is made up of
humanity’s demand for plant-based foodstuffs, natural fibres and animal
products, as well as the amount of land used for urban development and
infrastructure. Added to this are our CO2 emissions, or more
precisely, the area of forest required to absorb this CO2.
What can we do?
To put it bluntly: halt consumption and halt CO2
emissions. However, this kind of radical step is neither possible nor would it
make sense. Nevertheless, each one of us can play our part in reducing the
global ecological footprint. Small steps can make a big difference and will
ultimately have a significant influence on the overall picture. But, for this
to happen needs a change of attitude. Cycling rather than taking the car,
eating less meat and thinking about better ways to produce and consume
electricity are good places to start. Instead of relying on fossil fuels, which
release CO2 during the generation of electricity, we could produce
our energy using the sun or through other renewable sources.
Benefiting from 25 years of experience
Fronius has more than 25 years of experience in the photovoltaics
industry and has therefore been playing a part in reducing CO2 emissions
for more than two decades. The company’s enormous wealth of experience can help
householders kickstart their own personal energy revolution and so reduce their
individual ecological footprint. By installing a PV system on the roof along
with the appropriate infrastructure from Fronius, such as the GEN24 Plus
battery inverter, the whole household can be supplied with electricity.
Including an Ohmpilot in the installation makes it possible to completely
switch off the primary source of energy – usually gas or oil heating – between
the months of April and September, as the Ohmpilot is capable of meeting all of
the household’s hot water requirements using solar energy over the summer.
Photovoltaic systems can also represent a useful and cost effective
solution for business users. Most commercial customers have a large amount of
roof space and consume the majority of their energy during the day, when the
sun is shining, creating the perfect conditions for a PV installation.
Biohandel GmbH, located in Hörsching, Upper Austria, and run by the Pichler
family, is a perfect example of just how well this can work. Sustainability has
always been a top priority for the Pichler family. They produce around 40
percent of the energy they use to keep their fruit and vegetables cool
themselves, and they also power their three company cars using solar energy.
Find out more here.
Who is behind Earth Overshoot Day?
Each year, Earth Overshoot Day is
calculated and announced by the Global Footprint Network. The Global Footprint
Network is an international research organisation that provides decision makers
with a range of tools that are intended to help keep human activities within
the Earth’s ecological limits.
Over the past 50 years, the EOS has fallen
earlier and earlier in the year. The Earth’s renewable resources lasted until
29th December in 1970, by 1989 the EOS had been brought forward to 11th
October, and by 2009 it stood at 18th August.