Sustainability Blog

Earth Overshoot Day 2022 Pops Earlier than Ever

By Apurva Gosalia - Jul 28, 2022

Today is Earth Overshoot Day, the day of the year when humans have taken as much from nature as the planet’s ecosystems can replenish in an entire year. According to the Global Footprint Network, EOD is the earliest ever since records began in 1970.

EOD reminds us that the overshoot has persisted for more than half a century and has led to massive declines in biodiversity, excess greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, and increased competition for food and energy. This is further highlighted by unusual heat waves, wildfires, droughts, and floods.

With foreseeable climate change and resource scarcity, resource security is becoming an increasingly essential economic advantage. This is true for countries, cities and businesses. There is no advantage in waiting for international agreements. Rather, it is in the interest of every country, city and company, to take action themselves and strengthen their own ability to function in the inevitable future.

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A new generation of circular companies has already recognized this: They offer products and services while reducing overshoot. The expansion of such companies means global overshoot is falling.

“Circular solutions give companies the best chance to succeed in a predictable future,” says Mathis Wackernagel of the Global Footprint Network. “There are many examples that show how this can be done. We show a lot on the Power of Possibility platform.”

Here are a few examples of circular businesses:

Construction – Worldwide, more than 6 billion tons of waste are generated from demolished buildings each year. Eberhard, a Swiss construction company, opened the first plant in Europe 10 months ago that converts mixed demolition waste into new, high-quality, recyclable secondary raw materials. One application is a low-CO2, circular concrete made largely from recycled materials. If only such concrete were used worldwide instead of conventional concrete, EOD would be 2.4 days later.

Water technology – All life needs clean water. To enable the safe use and reuse of water, the Aqseptence Group offers specialized products and solutions for municipalities and industry to filter, separate and treat water. Through its innovative and sustainable products, the company contributes to the preservation of our planet, reduces CO2 emissions and sustainably conserves our natural resources.

Waste recycling – By closing a wide variety of material and product loops and sorting and recycling large waste streams, including plastics, Interzero reduces society’s dependence on virgin raw materials. Based on Interzero’s data, researchers from the Global Footprint Network have confirmed that for every euro of added value generated by the company’s zero-waste solutions, the global overshoot shrinks by over 28 global square meters. In contrast, for every euro of economic output added to the global economy, the global overshoot increases by an average of 2.6 global square meters. This means that for every euro of economic output, Interzero returns 10 times more to our planet than the global economy, on average, overshoots it. Without Interzero, EOD would occur 4 minutes and 20 seconds earlier worldwide. Thus, the contribution can be measured globally. 

As described in blogs and articles on this platform many times before, the players of the global lubricants industry have all power of possibilities to further develop their operations into true circular businesses, if not yet done so.

Companies that are able to produce goods and services in demand while reducing global overshoot are better positioned for the foreseeable future. Such companies are more likely to be needed and therefore remain valuable than companies that ignore these global trends. 

STAY SuSTAYnable!

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