>A sobering graph of our ecological footprint


Source: World Wildlife Fund 2004

This graph is in the beau’s study materials for his Environmental Science courses. A more recent version is available in the WWF’s Living Planet Report for 2008 (page 28), but I lack the internet skills to reproduce it here (blogger wouldn’t take a tiff image)
each vertical bar represents a region. From left,
1 North America (population 326 million)
2 European Union countries (454 million)
3 Rest of Europe (non EU) (349 million)
4 Middle East and Central Asia (270 million)
5 Latin America (535 million)
6 Asia Pacific (3.5 billion)
7 Africa (847 million)
The height of each bar represents the size of the region’s ecological footprint, measured in the number of global hectares per person necessary.

Two things to think about: North America’s footprint is twice the size as it’s nearest “competitor”, the EU, although the EU’s population is higher.

Now look at the fat, short bar that represents Asia. Still a relatively small footprint for it’s massive population, but that’s changing quickly. Countries like China want to compete with the west and are developing an enormous appetite for fossil fuels.

When that bar rises up to the level of the western countries, look out.

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3 Responses to >A sobering graph of our ecological footprint

  1. shrimplate says:

    >We achieve so much here, Marcellina, just by employing simple conservation measures. We have “smart” lightbulbs for example, but these are unfortunately too smart for many American consumers, who themselves remain dumb as rocks regarding many enviromental and energy issues.

  2. xan says:

    >I suspect if you broke this down further, the difference in consumption for normal life activities–food, housing, transportation, toys–would be accounted for in the geography of US vs. EU. We have shitloads of space in which there just aren’t many people.The rest of the difference in total consumption, I strongly suspect, would be in the amount of resources devoted to military activities. Please note the extreme self-restraint exercised in using the neutral term “devoted to” rather than my first choice, “wasted on.” ­čÖé

  3. bo says:

    >In order for all the bars to reach the hieght of the one for America, humanity would need the resources of two more earth-sized planets, or so I’ve heard it said.

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