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Earth Day Network is asking governments, businesses, and individuals to End Plastic Pollution. Plastic pollution is not only impacting our waters and marine life, but also the food chain and our overall health. Earth Day Network is mobilizing key actors and institutions and citizens across the globe to bring about a new level of consciousness about plastics pollution and a paradigm shift.

The world must perceive plastics not only as the environmental challenge of global proportions but a symbol of the values that need to change to build a more sustainable and just world.

Create Your Own Act of Green
With the 50th anniversary of Earth Day fast approaching in 2020, Earth Day Network is launching a series of major campaigns to catalyze and channel global collaboration for the health of our planet. This is where you come in. We need your help and your personal action. Please support our campaign by creating your own Act of Green, and helping us reach 3 billion.

About the Campaign
Trees reverse the impacts of land degradation and provide food, energy and income, helping communities achieve long-term economic and environmental sustainability. Trees also filter the air and help stave off the effects of climate change. In just one year, a mature leafy tree produces as much oxygen as 10 people inhale!

Join with Earth Day Network and help us to reach our goal of planting 7.8 billion trees — one tree for every person on earth — in honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day in 2020.

Reduce your Footprint
What is the Ecological Footprint?
The Ecological Footprint is a resource accounting tool that measures how much biologically productive land and sea is used by a given population or activity, and compares this to how much land and sea is available. Productive land and sea areas support human demands for food, fiber, timber, energy, and space for infrastructure. These areas also absorb the waste products from the human economy. The Ecological Footprint measures the sum of these areas, wherever they physically occur on the planet. The Ecological Footprint is used widely as a management and communication tool by governments, businesses, educational institutions, and non-governmental organizations.

What does the Ecological Footprint measure?
Ecological Footprint accounts answer a specific research question: how much of the biological capacity of the planet is demanded by a given human activity or population? To answer this question, the Ecological Footprint measures the amount of biologically productive land and water area an individual, a city, a country, a region, or all of humanity uses to produce the resources it consumes and to absorb the waste it generates with today’s technology and resource management practices. This demand on the biosphere can be compared to biocapacity, a measure of the amount of biologically productive land and water available for human use. Biologically productive land includes areas such as cropland, forest, and fishing grounds, and excludes deserts, glaciers, and the open ocean.

Global hectares are hectares with world-average productivity for all productive land and water areas in a given year. Studies that are compliant with current Ecological Footprint Standards use global hectares as a measurement unit. This makes Ecological Footprint results globally comparable, just as financial assessments use one currency, such as dollars or Euros, to compare transactions and financial flows throughout the world.

How accurate are Ecological Footprint measurements?
Current Ecological Footprint accounts provide a robust, aggregate estimate of human demand on the biosphere as compared to the biosphere’s productive capacity. As with any calculation system, Footprint accounts are subject to uncertainty in source data, calculation parameters, and methodological decisions. Several organizations are seeking to allocate resources towards obtaining more accurate estimates of this nature.

What can Ecological Footprint Analysis tell us about the future of the planet? Are we all doomed?
The Ecological Footprint highlights the reality of ecological scarcity, which can be disconcerting and frightening information. The existence of global overshoot suggests that human society will need to make significant changes to ‘business as usual’ if it wants to create a sustainable future. Robust and accurate Ecological Footprint accounts can help us make decisions towards sustainability, and can quantitatively show the positive impacts of groups, businesses, and people making decisions that are helping to bring human demand within the means of the planet.

What is the proper way to use the term Ecological Footprint?
The term Ecological Footprint, capitalized, is a proper name referring to a specific research question: how much of the biological capacity of the planet is demanded by a given human activity or population? Often, the word ‘footprint’ is used generically to refer to human impact on the planet, or to a different research question. As commonly used today, for example, the term ‘carbon footprint’ often refers to the number of tons of carbon emitted by a given person or business during a year, or to the tons of carbon emitted in the manufacture and transport of a product. In Ecological Footprint accounts, the ‘carbon Footprint’ measures the amount of biological capacity, in global hectares, demanded by human emissions of fossil carbon dioxide. The term Ecological Footprint has been deliberately excluded from trademark to encourage its widespread use.

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