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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Jul 9;99(14):9266-71. Epub 2002 Jun 27.

Tracking the ecological overshoot of the human economy.

Author information

1
Redefining Progress, 1904 Franklin Street, 6th Floor, Oakland, CA 94612, USA. wackernagel@rprogress.org

Abstract

Sustainability requires living within the regenerative capacity of the biosphere. In an attempt to measure the extent to which humanity satisfies this requirement, we use existing data to translate human demand on the environment into the area required for the production of food and other goods, together with the absorption of wastes. Our accounts indicate that human demand may well have exceeded the biosphere's regenerative capacity since the 1980s. According to this preliminary and exploratory assessment, humanity's load corresponded to 70% of the capacity of the global biosphere in 1961, and grew to 120% in 1999.

PMID:
12089326
PMCID:
PMC123129
DOI:
10.1073/pnas.142033699
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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