Saturday, November 10, 2007
My Footprint



CATEGORY ACRES
FOOD 5.4
MOBILITY 0.7
SHELTER 7.2
GOODS/SERVICES 7.2
TOTAL FOOTPRINT 20


IN COMPARISON, THE AVERAGE ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT IN YOUR COUNTRY IS 24 ACRES PER PERSON.

WORLDWIDE, THERE EXIST 4.5 BIOLOGICALLY PRODUCTIVE ACRES PER PERSON.


IF EVERYONE LIVED LIKE YOU, WE WOULD NEED 4.6 PLANETS.



This is my ecological footprint. It is a measure of how many acres of land are required to sustain my lifestyle, versus how many acres of land are actually available in the world per person. As you can see, I don't live very sustainably. I'm using nearly 5 times my fair share.

What can I do?
- Eat more locally grown, unprocessed foods
- Eat less meat
- Drive less
- Buy a hybrid
- Make my house more energy efficient


Take the Quiz


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posted by Mike Clawson at 6:22 PM | Permalink |


2 Comments:


At 11/10/2007 08:29:00 PM, Anonymous Miko

It's nice to see that they're taking non-human life into account according to their FAQ; most calculators of this type don't (or at least, they didn't last time I looked), which leads to rather meaningless estimates. I'm still a bit wary about their assumption that all of the factors can be expressed in terms of common units, however.

It's also a shame that they don't take population density into account (as far as I know--the FAQ doesn't mention it directly); the U.S. is at 31 people per square km compared to the world average of 48. Overpopulation is one of the fastest routes to unsustainability and so is the key factor if we're going to try to project these numbers into the future.

But all in all, a solid effort based on credible source material. It puts me at 18 acres.

Don't forget political action on the list of things we can/should do. Things like raising fuel efficiency standards and supporting renewable energy will have effects that go far beyond individual actions. Likewise, most of the complaints about GM crops go away if we can get government support for them and this could drastically increase the amount of land available (say, by creating crops that grow in the desert) and the value of the land (say, by creating crops that can survive in higher density conditions).

 

At 11/10/2007 09:08:00 PM, Blogger Mike Clawson

Political action is definitely essential. This website mentioned how many of the factors are outside of our direct control - thinks like local, state and national policies. But we can still influence them. One very effective way is to educate and influence your local city officials to begin implementing more "green" requirements in local building codes and the like. This is just starting to happen here in our area (a woman from our church was appointed to head an environmental advisory committee for our city council) and I'm excited to see what comes of it.

 

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