Quickly; the ecological footprint is the impact that every person (or group of people) has on the environment, by their consumption of goods and services.
1.8 hectare / person =
current sustainable average
While one hectare is equivalent to about two football fields, in Canada we have an average ecological footprint of 6.5 hectares per person, which represents almost four times the earth's capacity.
Why calculate my environmental footprint?
We hear you: "Is it really important to calculate my environmental footprint?" You should also tell yourself that your footprint is like a drop in the ocean, right?
At Twiggzy, we believe that every change counts. But everyone, without exception, quickly finds themselves asking the same question: "Even if I change ALL my habits, I will have NO impact" - This is not only true, but it is a logical thought. However, if together we understand that one single change spread out on a large scale can make a difference; wouldn't this be an huge step forward? Evidently, yes.
Non, you won't change the world by calculating your ecological footprint. However, it can show you harm in some of your daily habits, so easy to change. But before making the calculation, here is a little story to put you in context.
We need Earth to live, but Earth doesn't need us.
Man and Earth have an all but interdependent relationship. Earth doesn't need Man to live. To realize this, is also to understand that this relationship can be maintained for the long term only if one doesn't abuse one's limits to produce resources.
The $1,000 question: But... how do I know if I consume more or less of what Earth can provide me?
It is by calculating your ecological footprint that you find the answer. In fact, the formula allows you to calculate the area and resources that Earth needs to satisfy your human needs. Not bad, eh?
A little history on the famous ecological footprint
The idea of this calculation comes from the theories of Mathis Wackernagel, inventor of the ecological footprint concept. Mathis Wackernagel is currently president of Global Footprint Network, an international think tank on sustainability.
To your calculators!
Here are some online tools to measure your environmental footprint:
- Test designed by NGO - Global Footprint Network that provides the scientific information leading to strategic decisions and high impact investments.
Calculate your carbon footprint and the trees you need to plant in compensation:
- Test designed by University of Quebec in Chicoutimi.
- Test designed by Zero GHG, provider of offset carbon offset services in Quebec.
Have your children take the test!:
- Test designed by "the Ministry of the Environment and Fight Against Climate Change."
What do I do with my result?
Your result, whatever it is, simply and briefly allows you to better understand your physical impact on Earth. The results are often destabilizing! What we want here is to give you a communication tool. As stated above, alone, no one can create an impact. It is by discovering various solutions, by encouraging ourselves as a community and, above all: by humbly realizing that our current choices are harmful in several ways, that we will get there.
Is it possible to reduce your ecological footprint? Yes, of course! Our best advice: small changes, on a regular basis, are the best way to make an irreversible shift towards responsible consumption.
For example, turn off the tap when brushing your teeth or when you are soaping yourself in the shower - not always pleasant, but we get used to it! Whenever possible: walk instead of driving, buy local, compost, recycle and reuse. What's important is to be consistent, and especially: have fun!
Interested in learning more on the ways to reduce your ecological footprint? Follow us on Facebook to read our tips for you, your family and friends and to stay on top of the best ecological products offered by your local merchants!