All Posts By

Ronna Kelly

世界粮食价格波动将对中国和印度GDP造成最大影响

By | Ecological Limits, 未分类 | No Comments

Report published by UNEP and Global Footprint Network ranks countries on the economic risks they face from a hike in food prices

(London 18 May 2016) – If global food prices double then China could lose $161 billion in GDP and India could lose $49 billion, according to a new report released today by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Global Footprint Network.

The UNEP-Global Footprint Network report, entitled ERISC Phase II: How food prices link environmental constraints to sovereign credit risk, features a table that ranks countries according to how badly they will be affected if global food commodity prices double.

In the future, the world will likely suffer from higher and more volatile food prices as a result of a growing imbalance between the supply and demand of food, the report notes. Rising populations and incomes will intensify the demand for food while climate change and resource scarcity will disrupt food production.

The report, which was published in collaboration with Cambridge Econometrics and several leading financial institutions, models the impact of a global food price shock on 110 countries to assess which countries face the greatest economic risk from this growing imbalance.

In terms of the highest percentage loss to GDP, the five countries that will be worst hit if food commodity prices double are all in Africa – Benin, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal and Ghana. But China will see the most amount of money wiped from its GDP of any country – $161 billion, equivalent to the total GDP of New Zealand. India will see the second highest loss to GDP – $49 billion, equivalent to the total GDP of Croatia.

Among the report’s other key findings are:

  • Overall, Egypt, Morocco and Philippines could suffer the most from a doubling of food prices in terms of the combined impact on GDP, current account balance and inflation.
  • 17 out of the 20 countries most at risk from a food price shock are in Africa.
  • Paraguay, Uruguay, Brazil, Australia, Canada and the US would benefit the most from a sharp increase in food commodity prices.
  • Globally, negative effects of a food price shock massively outweigh positive effects in absolute terms. While China could see an absolute reduction in GDP of $161 billion, the highest absolute positive effect on GDP, seen in the United States, is only $3 billion –50 times smaller than the impact on China.
  • In 23 countries, a doubling in food prices leads to a 10 per cent (or more) rise in the consumer price index.
  • Countries with higher sovereign credit ratings tend to be less exposed to risks resulting from a food price spike.
  • Countries whose populations have the highest consumption of natural resources and services, and are therefore most responsible for the environmental constraints that make future food prices higher and more volatile, tend to face the lowest risk exposure.

UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner said, “Fluctuations in food prices are felt directly by consumers and reverberate throughout national economies. As environmental pressures mount, it is important to anticipate the economic impact of these stresses so that countries and investors can work on mitigating and minimizing risk. And as the global population continues to rise, food prices can be a bellwether for how environmental risk translates to economic risk and vulnerability.”

Susan Burns, co-founder of Global Footprint Network and director of its Finance Initiative, said: “Now more than ever, in this era of climate change, identifying all relevant environmental risks is crucial to investing not only in equities but also sovereign bonds.

“As this latest research shows, disruptions to our food system represent one substantial environmental risk that both investors and governments may be largely overlooking but would be well-served to integrate into their risk analysis.”

The ERISC Phase II report was published in collaboration with Cambridge Econometrics and several financial institutions: Caisse des Dépôts, First State Investments, HSBC, Kempen Capital Management, KfW, and S&P Global Ratings.

The report builds on the first Environment Risk Integration in Sovereign Credit (ERISC) report published in 2012 by UNEP FI and GFN.

The overall objective of the ERISC project is to assesses how environmental risks such as deforestation, climate change and water scarcity affect economies, given that GDP, inflation and current account balances underpin some of the criteria that determine a country’s sovereign credit rating and the cost of borrowing on international capital markets.

UNEP and GFN would like to invite interested parties, governments, banks, investors and rating agencies to work with them to further decipher the link between environmental constraints and sovereign credit risk.

Today’s ERISC report comes ahead of the release of a landmark report on food systems and natural resources written by the International Resource Panel (IRP), a consortium of 34 internationally renowned scientists, over 30 national governments and other groups hosted by UNEP.

The IRP report, which lists a series of solutions that will improve the world’s food system, will be released in Nairobi on 25 May at the United Nations Environment Assembly – the world’s de facto Parliament for the Environment.

####

About Global Footprint Network
Global Footprint Network is an international research organization that is changing how the world manages its natural resources and responds to climate change. Since 2003 Global Footprint Network has engaged with more than 50 nations, 30 cities, and 70 global partners to deliver scientific insights that have driven high-impact policy and investment decisions. Global Footprint Network’s finance initiative helps financial institutions quantify and integrate environmental risk in their investments, credit ratings, and country risk analysis.
www.footprintnetwork.org
www.footprintfinance.org

About UNEP Finance Initiative
The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) is a unique global partnership between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the global financial sector. UNEP FI works closely with over 200 financial institutions who are Signatories to the UNEP FI Statements, and a range of partner organizations to develop and promote linkages between sustainability and financial performance. Through peer-to-peer networks, research and training, UNEP FI carries out its mission to identify, promote, and realise the adoption of best environmental and sustainability practice at all levels of financial institution operations.
www.unepfi.org

Media Contacts:
Ronna Kelly (USA but in London 12 May – 19 May)
Director of Communications
Global Footprint Network
ronna.kelly@footprintnetwork.org
+1-510-839-8879
Skype: ronna.kelly.gfn

Shereen Zorba
Head of News and Media
UNEP
shereen.zorba@unep.org
+254-20 762 5022

2016地球日庆祝主题:树木

By | Carbon Footprint, Ecological Limits | No Comments

Together with our partner Earth Day Network, we’re happy to give trees a special nod today.

At Global Footprint Network, we have a soft spot for trees and forests. They are an essential pool of biodiversity. And they are one of our most important ecological assets: A whopping 70 percent of humanity’s Ecological Footprint is comprised of demand for forest products (paper, timber, etc.) and carbon capture, an ecological service that forests provide.

In fact, even if the whole Earth were covered with forests, we still wouldn’t have enough to meet our current demand for their products and services…Besides, we obviously need to leave some productive land available for crops to feed us.

Overall, total forest biocapacity worldwide has declined by 5 percent since 1961, the earliest year reliable data is available. On a per-person basis, the decline is much greater, at 59 percent.

Brazil, Russia, the United States and Canada are the countries with the most forested land in the world today. Combined, they generate 54 percent of the renewable goods and services that all forests provide globally.

Protecting, restoring and maintaining forests is a significant responsibility of governments not just for the sake of their people, but for the world at large, as greenhouse gas emissions know no borders.

Of the top five countries with the highest forest biocapacity in the world, China has shown the most remarkable trend reversal, followed by the United States.

Planting trees is an important, wonderful mission to pursue. But at least as important is focusing on reducing the demand we put on forests. First and foremost: carbon sequestration. Because we produce more carbon than our forests can absorb, it accumulates in the atmosphere and contributes to climate change. Since we can never plant enough trees to mitigate climate change, the path is clear: we need to reduce our carbon emissions. Click here for more information and graphs about the status of forests around the world.

2016年国家足迹核算正式发布!碳排放占据60%全球生态足迹

By | 个人足迹, 政府, 生态极限, 碳足迹 | No Comments

今天,全球足迹网络正式发布了2016年国家足迹核算并使用了完善的碳足迹计算方法。

相比原碳足迹计算,新的碳足迹计算结果表明全球碳足迹上升16%,同时全球生态足迹上升8%。如今的碳足迹已占据全球生态足迹的60%。

我们非常荣幸地为科研,教育和非商业使用提供国家足迹核算的免费下载版本(请在下方获取更多信息)。基于2016年国家生态核算的互动地图和国家排名请点击这里。同时,您也可以通过观看这个视频了解国家足迹核算。如果您有兴趣参与我们的足迹核算网络讨论,请发送邮件至media@footprintnetwork.org

我们每年更新的国家足迹核算(2012)涵盖了联合国食品及农业组织(FAO),联合国贸易商品统计数据库,国际能源署(IEA),和来自其他资源的数据。

碳计算更新

如上所述,今年我们在多方面完善了核算方法。其中,最大的影响源于森林平均碳封存值(AFCS)采用了新的计算方法——一公顷世界平均森林生态系统的长期碳封存能力。由于纳入了多种森林分类,全球野火及从土壤和采伐木材产品中所产生的森林生态系统排放量新数据源以及核算方法,我们发现相比以往计算,森林的总碳封存量有所下降。

因此,国家生态足迹受到了新计算方法的影响。若一个国家的碳足迹占生态足迹的比例越大,那么较去年的结果,其今年生态足迹就会有越大幅度的上升。 例如,阿曼苏丹国的碳足迹占其生态足迹高达77%的份额,较去年,阿曼在世界“需求高于生态系统再生”的排名中上升超过20位(阿曼现已成为世界前15位的生态负债国)。与此同时,埃塞俄比亚的碳足迹占其生态足迹的7%,在同一排名中下降16位。

完善的碳足迹计算及时地响应了于2015年12月由195个国家和欧盟签署的具有历史意义的巴黎协定。若将所达成的限制平均温度较工业革命前水平升高2摄氏度以上的目标转化为具体碳预算即为:未来二氧化碳总排放量为800亿吨。同时,巴黎协定也将目光转向了国家的总排放量,意识到碳封存土地选择的重要性。于此,生态足迹核算——同时测量了排放量的需求以及生态承载力可提供的碳封存——为检测国家的总排放和国家土地需求间的竞争提供了自然框架。

除了碳,通过生态足迹的棱镜我们可以获得更有趣,更深刻地理解,揭示了国家长远的发展趋势,以及国家生态财富,经济健康发展和人口增长带来的影响。突出的有:

  • PIGS国家 (葡萄牙, 意大利, 希腊, 西班牙) 自00年代中期开始,其人均生态足迹平稳下降。相反地,欧洲经济强国如德国法国自2008年金融危机以来人均生态足迹反弹上升。是什么使得PIGS国家既可以强化经济发展同时减少生态足迹?
  • 亚洲经济高速发展国家,如印度中国韩国,和越南由于居民生活水平提高,人均生态足迹出现了明显上升。

值得关注的是,越南和柬埔寨与其他亚洲不同的是,他们成功通过提高人均生物承载力的方式来支持相应提高的生态足迹。

  • 低收入高人口增长(快速增长需求)或者剧烈动荡的国家(农业活动和产品受阻)——包括洪都拉斯,尼日尔和索马里——正在触及着自身生态系统支持(生物承载力)人口需求(生态足迹)的临界点。

想获取更多信息?下载我们的公共数据包吧!

全球足迹网络现正为科研,教育和非商业使用提供国家足迹核算的免费下载版本,请点击www.footprintnetwork.org/public。公共数据包里包括了所有国家的最新计算结果,国家图表和如果世界人口统一某一国家人均生活水平则需要多少个地球。免费下载的数据包涵盖了新的数据分类方式——按照地区,GDP,人类发展指数和其他分类——同时包括了数据质量评级分数。

关于国家足迹核算

全球足迹网络每年更新国家足迹核算账户,跟踪约200个国家,每个国家每年来自超过30个数据源近20万数据。核算合计了国家一年中对自然资源以及支持地球的土地和海洋的需求——水果,蔬菜,肉制品,鱼类,树木,用于衣料的棉花,木材和碳吸收。这个需求,即生态足迹,可以与为提供这些产品以及服务的国家生态系统,即生物承载力,相比较。

1961年,即数据可追溯到的第一年,我们的地球可以提供多于人类所需的37%资源和服务。从那以后,全球足迹负债——人类所需超过自然预算——明显扩大。2016年国家足迹核算表明,由于过度捕鱼,森林过度砍伐和最严重的碳排放远超过生态系统可吸收量, 世界人口所需已经64%多于自然可提供。这将导致包括野生动物失去家园,渔业崩溃,和大气变化的严重后果。

更多关于国家足迹核算中碳足迹计算的方法可以参考同行Ecological Indicators的评审文章生态足迹: 重新定义碳足迹计算.

关于国家足迹核算许可证的相关问题可联系:data@footprintnetwork.org.

新闻中的生态足迹

By | 新闻报刊 | No Comments

Ecological Footprint data received an eye-opening visual treatment in a recent article in Geographical Magazine, by Benjamin Hennig, Senior Research Fellow in the School of Geography and the Environment at the University of Oxford. Using Ecological Footprint data in the latest Happy Planet Index, Hennig resized a map of the world to reflect each nation’s Ecological Footprint per capita and global population distribution. He then added a traffic light color scheme to reflect the number of planets that would be needed if the world as a whole lived the lifestyle of each country.

地球生命力报告2014

By | 未分类 | No Comments

人类对我们星球的需求已超过了自然可以再生能力的一半还多,这正在威胁人类的福祉和哺乳动物、鸟类、爬行动物及鱼类的数量。这是全球足迹网络、世界自然基金会和伦敦动物学会今天发布的数据。(足迹网络2015年9月29日于美国奥克兰)

Every two years, Global Footprint Network, WWF and the Zoological Society of London publish the Living Planet Report, the world’s leading, science-based analysis on the health of our planet and the impact of human activity. The Living Planet Report uses the Ecological Footprint and additional complementary measures to explore the changing state of global biodiversity and human consumption. The report documents the extent of human pressure on the planet, how that compares across nations, and how it is impacting the natural world.

View the Living Planet Report 2014 Press Release

View the Living Planet Report 2014 Ecological Footprint Factsheet

Humanity’s Demand on Nature Climbs as Biodiversity Suffers Major Decline

Click to view full reportThe Living Planet Report 2014, released September 30, 2014, shows that humanity’s demand on the planet is more than 50 percent larger than what nature can renew, jeopardizing the well-being of humans as well as populations of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish.

Humanity’s Ecological Footprint has more than doubled since 1961, according to the Living Planet Report. At the same time, vertebrate wildlife populations have declined, on average, by more than half in just four decades, as measured by the Living Planet Index.

It would take 1.5 Earths to produce the resources necessary to support humanity’s current Ecological Footprint. This global overshoot means, for example, that we are cutting timber more quickly than trees regrow and releasing CO2 faster than nature can sequester it.

Growth in the Ecological Footprint is largely attributable to the carbon Footprint, which has increased to comprise 53 percent of our Footprint in 2010 from 36 percent in 1961. Carbon emissions (in particular) and food demand are the major drivers of the escalating Footprint. In addition, from 1961 to 2010, the global human population increased from 3.1 billion to 6.9 billion, and the per capita Ecological Footprint increased from 2.5 to 2.6 global hectares.

Living Planet Report Partners

WWF
WWF is one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations, with over 5 million supporters and a global network active in over 100 countries. WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the Earth’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature, by conserving the world’s biological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable, and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.

Zoological Society of London
Founded in 1826, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is an international scientific, conservation, and educational organization. Its mission is to achieve and promote the worldwide conservation of animals and their habitats

科学研究表明更多投资需求以达到2020年生物多样性目标

By | 未分类 | No Comments

发表在《科学》、全球足迹网络研究人员作为作者之一的一项新的研究成果表明,尽管取得了一些进展,但要达到国际达成的2020年生物多样性的目标还需要做更多努力。(《科学》,2014年10月,奥克兰)

(OAKLAND, CA, USA) — OCTOBER 2, 2014 —A new study published in Science today and co-authored by Global Footprint Network’s researchers reveals that, despite some progress, more needs to be done to reach an internationally agreed set of biodiversity targets by 2020.

Ecosystems and the biodiversity that underpin them are vital for sustaining human life. Recognizing this, in 2010, 193 nations agreed on a set of 20 biodiversity-related goals, known as Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

At this mid-way point to the 2020 deadline, a team of 51 experts from over 30 institutions have assessed progress towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and projected whether or not they will be met. They reveal that despite increasing management efforts and financial investment in protecting biodiversity, and a remarkable expansion in protected areas on land and at sea, accumulated and increasing pressures on the natural world mean it is unlikely that most of the targets will be met by 2020 if we remain on our current trajectory.

To assess progress towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, experts used a broad range of data on biodiversity and human indicators such as global bottom-trawl fishing pressure, efforts to manage invasive species, financial investment, and public understanding of biodiversity. They then projected these trends to assess the state of biodiversity in 2020.

“The Aichi Biodiversity Targets represent the most important international commitment towards preserving biodiversity,” says Derek Tittensor, Lead Author and Senior Marine Biodiversity Scientist at United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre and Adjunct Professor at Dalhousie University. “However, our projections show that the impact of current management and policy efforts is not enough to halt biodiversity declines and meet most of the targets by 2020.”

Global Footprint Network’s Ecological Footprint is one of the pressure indicators included in the analysis. “Over the past five decades, the biosphere’s ecosystems have been put under increasing pressure due to humanity’s growing demand for resources and ecological services,” says Alessandro Galli, a Global Footprint Network senior scientist and director of the organization’s Mediterranean-MENA Program.

“Although evidence exists that actions taken to protect biodiversity might have slowed the decline in biodiversity, the growing societal responses have not contributed to major reductions in human-induced pressures,” Galli adds. “Among various factors, this might be due to the fact that most of these responses have focused on addressing the state of biodiversity rather than the pressures upon it.”

As shown in the Science paper, increased pressures on biodiversity suggest that the situation is worsening. The consumption of natural resources is increasing. Decreasing wetland extent and declining coral cover reflect large-scale habitat loss. At current rates, Aichi Biodiversity Targets to halve the rate of natural habitat loss and sustainably harvest all fish stocks will not be achieved – but there remains sufficient time to change this outcome.

“The Aichi Biodiversity Targets are still within reach,” says Dr Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. “We have numerous examples of successful policy efforts to halt or slow biodiversity loss. This study acts as a wake-up call that these efforts should become more widespread.”

Substantial progress is being made on individual targets. Certification schemes for forests and fisheries are becoming more widespread. Policy interventions have resulted in reduced deforestation and led to better managed fisheries stocks in some regions. There is also growing public awareness of biodiversity. Financial resources are being made available to address the biodiversity crisis, but more investment is needed to fulfill all targets.

The results of this study feed into a global assessment of the status and trends of biodiversity – the fourth edition of the Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-4) – which is being released on 6 October during the upcoming meeting to the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Pyeongchang, Republic of Korea. During this meeting the necessary actions and novel solutions required to meet the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and preserve biodiversity will be discussed.

Editors Notes

“A mid-term analysis of progress towards international biodiversity targets,” by D.P. Tittensor et al. will be published online by the journal Science, at the Science Express website, on Thursday 2 October. See http://www.sciencemag.org/content/346/6206/241. More information can be found online at the Science press package at http://www.eurekalert.org/jrnls/sci. You will need your user ID and password to access this information.

About Global Footprint Network
Global Footprint Network promotes the science of sustainability by advancing the Ecological Footprint, a resource accounting tool that makes sustainability measurable. Together with its partners, the Network works to further improve and implement this science by coordinating research, developing methodological standards, and providing decision-makers with robust resource accounts to help the human economy operate within the Earth’s ecological limits. www.footprintnetwork.org

About the Aichi Biodiversity Targets
The Aichi Biodiversity Targets for 2011-2020 were adopted at the Convention on Biological Diversity’s tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties in October 2010 in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan. They formed part of the revised and updated Strategic Plan for Biodiversity which provides an overarching framework on biodiversity for biodiversity-related conventions, the United Nations system, and all partners engaged in biodiversity management and policy development.

The mission of the plan is to “take effective and urgent action to halt the loss of biodiversity in order to ensure that by 2020 ecosystems are resilient and continue to provide essential services, thereby securing the planet’s variety of life, and contributing to human well-being, and poverty eradication. To ensure this, pressures on biodiversity are reduced, ecosystems are restored, biological resources are sustainably used and benefits arising out of utilization of genetic resources are shared in a fair and equitable manner; adequate financial resources are provided, capacities are enhanced, biodiversity issues and values mainstreamed, appropriate policies are effectively implemented, and decision-making is based on sound science and the precautionary approach.”

About UNEP-WCMC
The United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) is the specialist biodiversity assessment centre of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the world’s foremost intergovernmental environmental organisation. The Centre has been in operation for over 30 years, combining scientific research with practical policy advice. www.unep-wcmc.org

About the Convention on Biological Diversity
Opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and entering into force in December 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty for the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of the components of biodiversity and the equitable sharing of the benefits derived from the use of genetic resources. With 194 Parties up to now, the Convention has near universal participation among countries. The Convention seeks to address all threats to biodiversity and ecosystem services, including threats from climate change, through scientific assessments, the development of tools, incentives and processes for implementation, the transfer of technologies, sharing information on good practices and the full and active involvement of relevant stakeholders including indigenous and local communities, youth, NGOs, women and the business community. The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is a supplementary agreement to the Convention. It seeks to ensure the safe use of LMOs obtained through modern biotechnology and to protect biological diversity from their potential adverse effects. To date, 167 countries plus the European Union are Parties to the Cartagena Protocol. The Secretariat of the Convention and its Cartagena Protocol is located in Montreal, Canada. For more information visit: www.cbd.int.

 

全球超载日:2015年8月13日

By | 未分类 | No Comments

还不到八个月,人类就用完了今年全年的自然预算,其中碳封存占对自然需求的一半以上。(全球足迹网络2015年8月12日于美国奥克兰)

Carbon emissions continue pushing the Ecological Footprint further above the planet’s annual budget

(OAKLAND, CA, USA) — AUGUST 13, 2015 —In less than eight months, humanity has used up nature’s budget for the entire year, with carbon sequestration making up more than half of the demand on nature, according to data from Global Footprint Network, an international sustainability think tank with offices in North America, Europe and Asia.

Global Footprint Network tracks humanity’s demand on the planet (Ecological Footprint) against nature’s ability to provide for this demand (biocapacity). Earth Overshoot Day marks the date when humanity’s annual demand on nature exceeds what Earth can regenerate in that year. Earth Overshoot Day has moved from early October in 2000 to August 13th this year.

The costs of this ecological overspending are becoming more evident by the day, in the form of deforestation, drought, fresh-water scarcity, soil erosion, biodiversity loss and the buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The latter will significantly amplify the former, if current climate models are correct. Consequently, government decision-makers who factor these growing constraints in their policy making will stand a significantly better chance to set their nation’s long-term economic performance on a favorable track.

“Humanity’s carbon footprint alone more than doubled since the early 1970s, when the world went into ecological overshoot. It remains the fastest growing component of the widening gap between the Ecological Footprint and the planet’s biocapacity,” said Mathis Wackernagel, president of Global Footprint Network and the co-creator of the Ecological Footprint resource accounting metric. “The global agreement to phase out fossil fuels that is being discussed around the world ahead of the Climate Summit in Paris would significantly help curb the Ecological Footprint’s consistent growth and eventually shrink the Footprint.”

The carbon footprint is inextricably linked to the other components of the Ecological Footprint — cropland, grazing land, forests and productive land built over with buildings and roads. All these demands compete for space. As more is being demanded for food and timber products, fewer productive areas are available to absorb carbon from fossil fuel. This means carbon emissions accumulate in the atmosphere rather than being fully absorbed.

A Second Chance

The climate agreement expected at the United Nations Conference of Parties (COP) 21 this December will focus on maintaining global warming within the 2-degrees-Celsius range over pre-Industrial Revolution levels. This shared goal will require nations to implement policies to completely phase out fossil fuels by 2070, per the recommendations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), directly impacting the Ecological Footprints of nations.

Assuming global carbon emissions are reduced by at least 30 percent below today’s levels by 2030, in keeping with the IPCC’s suggested scenario, Earth Overshoot Day could be moved back on the calendar to September 16, 2030 (assuming the rest of the Footprint would continue to expand at the current rate), according to Global Footprint Network.

This is not impossible. In fact, Denmark has cut its emissions over the last two decades at this rate: Since the 1990s, it reduced its carbon emissions by 33 percent. Had the world done the same (while not changing the rest of the Footprint), Earth Overshoot Day would be on October 3 this year.

This is not to say that Denmark has already reached a sustainable Ecological Footprint.  Humanity would require the resources of 2.85 planets if everyone lived like the Danes, which would move Earth Overshoot Day to May 8.

Business As Usual

By contrast, business as usual would mean using the resources equivalent to two planets by 2030, with Earth Overshoot Day moving up on the calendar to the end of June.

This projection assumes that biocapacity, population growth and consumption trends remain on their current trajectories. However, it is not clear whether a sustained level of overuse is possible without significantly damaging long-term biocapacity, with consequent impacts on consumption and population growth.

Tipping Point

“We are encouraged by the recent developments on the front line of renewable energy, which have been accelerating worldwide, and by the increasing awareness of the finance industry that a low-carbon economy is the way of the future,” said Wackernagel. “Going forward, we cannot stress enough the vital importance of reducing the carbon footprint, as nations are slated to commit to in Paris. It is not just good for the world, but increasingly becoming an economic necessity for each nation. We all know that the climate depends on it, but that is not the full story: Sustainability requires that everyone live well, within the means of one planet. This can only be achieved by keeping our Ecological Footprint within our planet’s resource budget.”

##

Additional Resources:

More on Earth Overshoot Day: www.overshootday.org

Follow us on social media: #overshoot

To calculate your own personal Ecological Footprint and learn what you can do to reduce it, go to: footprintcalculator.org

Free Public Data Package (Ecological Footprint Data on 182 countries):
www.footprintnetwork.org/public2015
About Global Footprint Network:
Global Footprint Network is an international think tank working to drive informed, sustainable policy decisions in a world of limited resources. Together with its partners, Global Footprint Network coordinates research, develops methodological standards, and provides decision-makers with a menu of tools to help the human economy operate within Earth’s ecological limits.

只有8个国家满足联合国采纳的可持续发展目标中的两个关键条件

By | 未分类 | No Comments

目前世界有八个国家达到了全球可持续发展的两项主要最低条件,即联合国量化的国民满意生计指标和生态足迹量化的符合星球资源预算约束的生存指标。(全球足迹网络2015年9月23日于美国奥克兰)

OAKLAND, SEPTEMBER 23, 2015—Eight countries in the world currently meet two key minimum conditions for global sustainable development: satisfactory well-being for their residents, as measured by the U.N., and living within the planet’s resource budget, according to Global Footprint Network, an international sustainability think tank with offices in North America, Europe and Asia. Global Footprint Network monitors this second condition by tracking humanity’s demand on the planet (Ecological Footprint) against nature’s ability to provide for this demand (biocapacity).

The findings come as 193 nations are meeting this week in New York to adopt Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to secure well-being for all on this one planet, regardless of income level, gender or ethnicity.

Mapping the sustainable development of nations

“Caring for the Earth,” the seminal 1991 report jointly issued by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the U.N. Development Programme and WWF, provided the most specific definition of sustainable development: “improving the quality of human life while living within the carrying capacity of supporting eco-systems.”

“Fulfilling this universal dream requires progress without any additional costs for future generations. This means it will be crucial to manage natural resources carefully so that we live within the means of nature,” said Mathis Wackernagel, president of Global Footprint Network.

The concept of “well-being for all” has its own U.N.-developed metric: the Human Development Index. HDI is based on the life expectancy, education and income of a nation’s residents. On a scale of zero to one, the U.N. Development Programme defines 0.7 as the threshold for a high level of development (0.8 for very high development.)

The concept “within the means of nature” is measured by the Ecological Footprint. The Footprint adds up the competing demands on productive surfaces, including food, fiber, timber, carbon dioxide sequestration and space for infrastructure.

At current population levels, our planet provides only 1.7 global hectares (gha) of biologically productive surface area per person. Thus, the average Ecological Footprint per person worldwide needs to fall significantly below this threshold if we want to accommodate larger human populations and also provide space for wild species to thrive.

Each nation’s endowment and ability to trade vary enormously. However, to achieve global sustainable development, with an HDI of at least 0.7, humanity’s demand on nature has to fall below an average of 1.7 gha per person, based on current population levels.

While the HDI of most nations has been steadily increasing over the past decades, their Ecological Footprint has been growing as well. Humanity’s annual demand on nature currently exceeds what Earth can regenerate in that year by 60 percent.

Algeria, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Georgia, Jamaica, Jordan and Sri Lanka are the only countries that currently meet the two minimum criteria for global sustainable development. They enjoy “high human development” (even “very high human development” in the case of Cuba) while keeping their Ecological Footprint lower than 1.7 global hectares per person, according to Global Footprint Network and United Nations data.

By contrast, both the United States and China meet the minimum HDI requirement, while missing the second criteria by exceeding the 1.7 gha per person Ecological Footprint level. In India, meanwhile, the Ecological Footprint per person is 0.9 gha, substantially lower than the 1.7 gha per person global threshold, and its HDI is only 0.58. (See sortable HDI-Footprint Chart for more than 150 countries.)

Resource risk is acute for 71 percent of the global population

However, growing population and increasing consumption continue adding pressure on ecological constraints and contributing to climate change, compounding resource risks for every country’s economy. Such risks are most evident in countries whose Ecological Footprints are larger than what their ecosystems can renew—these countries are running “ecological deficits”—and who have low incomes, and therefore can less easily afford to buy their way out of resource scarcity.

A staggering 71 percent of the world population now lives in countries with this double-challenge: ecological deficits AND lower-than-world-average income. That’s up from less than 15 percent in the early 1960s.

“Putting natural resource security squarely into the development equation will be essential to ensuring that sustainable development is achieved,” said Wackernagel. “We hope the Sustainable Development Goals will spur all of us to move forward along this path.”

##

Additional Resources:

Animated HDI-Footprint Graphic: 1980-2011

Ecological Footprint-HDI Sortable Chart

Downloadable Sustainable Development Poster

Free Public Data Package (Ecological Footprint Data on 182 countries)

About Global Footprint Network:
Global Footprint Network is an international think tank working to drive informed, sustainable policy decisions in a world of limited resources. Together with its partners, Global Footprint Network coordinates research, develops methodological standards, and provides decision-makers with a menu of tools to help the human economy operate within Earth’s ecological limits.

北京的食物生态足迹不断增长

By | 政府, 生态极限 | No Comments

中国科学院地理科学和资源研究所的谢高地教授最近作为第一作者在可持续杂志上发表了一篇研究文章,与全球足迹网络就超大城市的不可持续性进行了讨论。

北京的人口在2008至2012年期间从2300万怕攀升至3000多万,仅仅四年时间就增加了惊人的30%,快速增长的人口带来的直接影响之一就是北京人口包括常住人口和流动人口等更加依赖外地食物的供应和不断逃离市区。这是国内的一些研究人员在《可持续杂志》上最新发表的一篇文章中强调的。文章作者指出,北京在有限农业资源方面面临的挑战已在高昂的土地价格方面得到印证。

该文章指出,过去五年来,北京对非本地食物供应的依赖度从48%增长到64%,即都市圈总食物消费的一半以上需要从外地购入。“城市扩张引起生态足迹的对外延伸:北京案例”。该文章作者引入了生态足迹距离的概念(简称Def),来反映可支撑一定人口生态足迹达到达到该人口水平时所需自然资源的平均距离。研究人员强调,食物在质量上占了北京所消耗的大部分的生物承载力。

由于数据收集方面的困难,研究人员将重点放在国内生产的食品资源方面,如蔬菜、水果、肉类、蛋、鱼、粮食和油。他们还专门利用了北京大型食品超市兴发地的数据,该超市的食品销售占全北京食品超市销售的三分之二还多,因而具有代表性。这种特征性研究使研究人员得出判断,北京的生态足迹距离从2008年的567公里上升到2012年的677公里,平均每年增加大约25公里。北京的生态足迹距离在冬春两季远高于夏秋两季,原因是季节性变化即首都周边地区的食品产能在一年中的暖和月份增加了。

来自中国科学院地理科学和自然资源研究所的谢高地研究员是第一作者,他答应就该文章进行访谈并通过电子邮件回答了如下问题:

您是如何开始生态足迹研究工作的?

谢:我1997年开始关注中国的自然资源和可持续发展。我们开始寻找可有效反映出当地发展实际可持续状况的指标体系。马西斯和威廉姆等人所写的一些文章吸引了我的注意,比如1996年的“我们的足迹:减少人类对地球的影响”和1997年的“投资自然资本的认知和结构性障碍:基于生态足迹的经济学”。

这些文章刺激了我对生态足迹的关注,很早便接受了生态足迹是分析可持续性的一个好工具的看法。我的研究团队之后便与全球足迹网络和世界自然基金会一起合作,共同编制了中国生态足迹报告。生态足迹现在不仅在中国的学术界广为人知,还为全国熟知。

您的研究文章期望能从地理距离来评价北京距供养其人口所需的生物承载力还有多远,您的最终目标是什么?

谢:过去三十年,中国经历了快速的城镇化进程。仅仅最近的几年,就已经形成了几个超大城市,越来越多的人们离开自己的农村故土到城市寻找工作,像北京、上海这样人口超过2千万的城市让我很担忧其规模带来的可持续性问题。这些城市的生态足迹能清晰地延伸扩展,超过其自身的承载力。

我的研究目标就是要展示一个大型城市的生态足迹或生物承载力可以延伸扩展到多大,北京案例只是开始。我们研究所得出的结论是清楚的,即中国应该优先发展中小城市,因为它们更具有可持续性。

生态足迹距离(Def)是如何真实地指明或推断可持续性的?

谢:这个距离距生物承载力越高和越远,安全性就越低。如果食品要通过远距离运输来供应,则食品的安全性就下降,受影响因素增多如气候因素。长距离运输也会影响食品的质量如营养价值等。另外,若运输太多,食品的生态系统也会产生一些环境问题比如碳排放。

全球足迹网络是将“进口”作为其他国家的一种资源来核算。您的文章是将其定义为来自北京市以外的输入,且只是国内生产的,如何考虑来自国外的真实进口的呢?

谢:北京“进口”的生物承载力应包括国内和国外的食品输入。我们面临的挑战是如何获取像北京这样超大城市的国外进口食品的数据,无论是数据量还是可靠性方面都有困难。我个人判断食品消费在北京消耗的生物承载力中所占的比重在10-20%,也仅仅是目前阶段的一种推断而已。

所以,我们仅仅计算中国的“进口”生物承载力的生态足迹距离。但我们也会在条件成熟时计算从国外进口生物承载力的生态足迹距离。

基于您的研究,大都市可持续发展对您来说是什么?在相关促进政策方面有何建议?

谢:我认为,大都市可持续发展应该基于人民可以获得必需的资源量来支撑其生态足迹和生态系统服务所需而得以实现,这得归功于前一辈留下的生物承载力让我们可以承载环境污染和不必忧虑食品安全。

可以通过如下一些政策来实现目标:

  1. 精细化土地利用,合理规划好人口密度和自然资产使用;
  2. 确保可用生物承载力尽可能的最优化利用;
  3. 减少资源的运输。

像北京和上海这样的超大城市的政府已经切实认识到了城市规模过大的问题,已经开始采取措施来限制或控制城市的增长。但在国家层面,城市规划是否应该倾向于中小城市还有争议。

中美气候协议声明

By | 政府, 生态极限, 足迹经济 | No Comments

全球足迹网络主席马西斯的声明

本周宣布的中美气候变化协议标志着我们能源未来新规则的到来,反映了未来几十年将化石燃料使用降为零的强烈需求认知。最大二氧化碳排放的两个国家现在承认了过去虽是政治禁忌但却是实际需要的那些事情。

其他国家在静观事态发展,看看中美两国对气候变化的反应。因此,习近平主席和奥巴马总统对2025 年和2030年削减温室气体排放和增大可再生能源使用的承偌给世界一个积极的信号,尽管只有仅仅10年和15年的时间去完成,对明年底召开的巴黎气候峰会产生导向作用。

按照白宫说法,这个新目标会引导美国去实现到2050年削减80%全面经济体系碳排放的目标。中国也提出了能源消费的目标,即到2030年“零排放”能源的消费比重要达20%左右。两国采取的行动将为今天在世的多数人带来成果。

这些目标代表了政治力量的巨大转变,昭示化石燃料的退出最终会普遍为世人所接受。

当然,要实现经济转型还需要各国充分地投资,所发生的成本还可能会延迟各国采取行动的时间。因此,各国要根据自身情况采取各自行动来实现向低碳政策的转向,从而寻求有发展情景的未来之路。

我们的分析显示,各国在迈向低碳经济所需改革的广度和影响方面情况各异。等待时间越长,在低碳的未来其碳密集资产价值就损失越大。不作为会导致竞争力的下降和潜在更高的信用违约风险。我们正在与联合国环境规划署金融倡议(UNEP FI)和主要的金融机构合作,为金融行业开发工具来在评价主权债券时更好地监测这些经济风险。

为了达成这些目标,各层次的政府领导需要更好的工具来做出各种经济有效的长期决策,从基础设施建设到能源供给直至建筑物。为此,我们与美国的州级领导合作,深化传统净现值(NPV)分析工具,理解投资过程的经济和资源内涵。这样的评价方法为特定投资更为现实地估计了未来的成本和效益,并用很多实例表明低碳方式是目前经济优越的选择。

事实上,周三宣布的此项中美协议提出,我们需要一个全新的方式去确定化石燃料和资产的价值,这些资产由于过度依赖化石燃料而可能会搁置浪费。中美两国如何去实现这些雄心勃勃目标的细节还有待观望,协议可能更多的还是象征意义强。但是,这种象征具有强大作用,我们深信其预示了2015年在气候变化方面采取行动具有光明的前途。