This sad date means that by the beginning of August, humanity has already exhausted all the natural resources that the planet is able to restore in a year, and begins to live off the "environmental loan", that is, in fact, "in debt" to future generations.
For the first time, Ecological Debt Day was calculated more than half a century ago, in 1970, and then it fell on December 29, that is, “ahead” of the calendar year by only a couple of days. Since then, however, that date has been coming ever earlier as our planet's population continues to grow—and get richer at the same time—which puts additional pressure on the environment. Already by 1990 World Day fell on October 11; in 2000 - on September 23; 2010 - on August 8. This year, humanity has already exhausted its “credit limit” on August 2. At the same time, it is important to remember that on January 1, with the beginning of the new year, our debt does not reset to zero, but continues to accumulate - the countdown simply starts from the beginning.
According to the Global Footprint Network (GFN), humanity has long been living beyond its means. To meet the current needs of the world community in renewable resources (in other words, so that they are replenished in a timely manner in a natural way), 1.75 planets like our Earth are needed. That is, every year we “go through” the “budget” allocated by the planet by about three quarters. And this, in turn, leads to environmental depletion - deforestation, food shortages, ocean acidification and other severe consequences for the planet and its inhabitants.
This is why the World Day for Ecological Debt is celebrated - it is a reminder to all of us, the inhabitants of the Earth, that the future of our planet is under threat. Environmentalists remind us that each of us can contribute to reducing environmental debt by changing our lifestyle. For example, eating less meat (especially red), recycling garbage and saving energy.