Join the campaign

Earth Overshoot Day

August 19th, 2015

  • This event has passed.

August 19 was Earth Overshoot Day 2014, marking the date when humanity has exhausted nature’s budget for the year. For the rest of the year, we will continue to contribute to the ecological deficit by drawing down local resource stocks and accumulating carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. We will be operating in overshoot.

Throughout most of history, humanity has used nature’s resources to build cities and roads, to provide food and create products, and to absorb our carbon dioxide at a rate that was well within Earth’s budget. But in the mid-1970s, we crossed a critical threshold: Human consumption began outstripping what the planet could reproduce. According to the Global Footprint Network’s calculations, our demand for renewable ecological resources and the services they provide is now equivalent to that of more than 1.5 Earths. The data shows us on track to require the resources of two planets well before mid-century. The fact that we are using, or “spending,” our natural capital faster than it can replenish is similar to having expenditures that continuously exceed income.

In planetary terms, the costs of our ecological overspending are becoming more evident by the day. Climate change—a result of greenhouse gases being emitted faster than they can be absorbed by forests and oceans—is the most obvious and arguably pressing result. But there are others—shrinking forests, species loss, fisheries collapse, higher commodity prices and civil unrest, to name a few.

Join the Campaign and Speak Out!

There are many ways to participate! Together, we can raise awareness and bring about change.

Be a campaign friend
  • Global Population Speak Out is a project of Population Media Center, an IRS-designated 501(c)(3) organization that relies on the support of individuals, corporations, foundations and other institutions to fund its communications programs worldwide. Your donation will go towards support of the Global Population Speak Out project.

    All major credit cards are accepted. If you do not wish to pay online, please call us at (802) 985-8156 x200. We can answer your questions or process your donation directly over the phone.

    If you would like more information or have questions not answered in these pages, please contact us.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.