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09th May 2019

‘Irresponsible’: Europeans using world’s resources way faster than they are renewed, says report

Jade Hayden

conscious bits

“Continuing at this rate is no longer an option.”

Europe is using the world’s resources far, far faster than they can be renewed.

A new report has shown that if everybody in the world lived like the average European Union citizen, the globe’s resources would be used up by tomorrow, May 10.

Published by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Global Footprint Network, the report said that the EU uses almost 20 percent of the planet’s bio-capacity despite only representing seven percent of the global population.

Continuing at such a pace has not only been called unsustainable, but also “irresponsible.”

“These figures are stark and show that Europe is using up more than its fair share of the world’s ecological resources,” said WWF director, Ester Asin.

“Yet we only have one planet, and we’re depleting its natural ecosystems at a faster rate than they can be renewed.”

The report showed that 2.8 additional planets would be needed to meet our needs if our resources were used up by tomorrow.

The EU’s smallest country, Luxembourg, was the fastest to use up its share of natural resources. Ireland used up its own share by April 27.

Asin went on:

“The solutions to tackle this crisis are within reach: numerous examples show it is possible to move towards a climate neutral society which is respectful of nature.

“Whether businesses, cities, and regions invest in the sustainable economy, or governments are pledging to achieve net-zero emissions, it is possible to make the right choices for our planet and for us all, leaving no one behind.”

WWF is calling on European leaders to implement a pact which will encourage the more sustainable use of natural resources over the next five years.

The pact would aid the environment while also improving our quality of life and well-being, by introducing sustainable transport services, investing in renewable energies, and focusing on responsible farming and fishery practices.

You can check out the full report here. 

During May, Her will be doing some more #ConsciousBits.

Over the month, we’ll be learning how to re-use more than we buy, examining the sheer amount of waste the planet produces, and considering the many, many benefits of sustainable fashion choices. 

We’ll also be chatting to some people who have made sustainability a priority, while setting ourselves a few environmentally conscious challenges along the way. 

Change is daunting and we’re not perfect, but we can always try to do our bit. Our conscious bit. 

You can follow the rest of the #ConsciousBits series here or follow our Instagram account for more related content. 

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