“Earth Overshoot Day” – a Day Not to Celebrate

This past Monday, August 8, was Earth Overshoot Day.  If you didn’t know this, it might be because Earth Overshoot Day is celebrated on a different day every year.

“Celebrated” is probably not the best choice of words.  Earth Overshoot Day, also known as Ecological Debt Day, is the date every year when humans around the world have consumed natural resources equal to the amount that the planet can replenish in one year.

In a sustainable world, we would not reach this milestone until at least December 31.  As we use up a year’s worth of resources, the planet replenishes a year’s worth of resources.  In an ideal world, the planet would generate natural resources faster than we use them.

Unfortunately, in the current world, we have just used up a year’s worth of natural resources – and it’s barely August.  In fact, this is the earliest we have ever reached Earth OverShoot Day since scientists began marking it in the early 1970s.

There is some good news in all of this.  In the 1970s, Earth Overshoot Day advanced an average of three days per year.  With the exception of last year (when it was celebrated on August 14), this milestone has slowed to advance only about one day per year.

At Agilent, we are working to reduce our global footprint and the impact we have on the planet.

For the seventh consecutive year, Agilent has been named as one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World.  Companies are evaluated on performance in energy, water, carbon and waster, safety, innovation and leadership diversity.

Agilent continues work aggressively on energy efficiency and clean and renewable energy projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote environmental responsibility. Our goal for 2016 is to divert 89 percent of our waste stream away from landfills.

We provide innovative environmental solutions that help customers understand and measure their impact on climate change, which affects our planet’s ability to replenish itself.

And the Agilent Technologies Foundation makes donations worldwide to educate students and others about how science can help improve our planet.


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