Ecological footprints
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Ecological Footprints. http://www.newsociety.com/titleimages/086571312Xcf3.jpg. We Depend on Nature. We exchange energy and matter with our environment Eating Drinking Breathing We use Energy for heat and mobility Wood for housing and paper Food and water for living.

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Ecological Footprints

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Ecological footprints

Ecological Footprints

http://www.newsociety.com/titleimages/086571312Xcf3.jpg


We depend on nature

We Depend on Nature

  • We exchange energy and matter with our environment

    • Eating

    • Drinking

    • Breathing

  • We use

    • Energy for heat and mobility

    • Wood for housing and paper

    • Food and water for living

http://www.finfacts.com/irelandbusinessnews/uploads/rfsept142007.jpg


We depend on nature1

We Depend on Nature

  • Nature

    • Absorbs our wastes

    • Provides climate stability

    • Protects us from ultraviolet radiation

    • the very source of our lives and well being

http://www.travelblog.org/Photos/594340.html


Ecological footprints1

Ecological Footprints

  • The amount of ecologically productive land

    • used by individuals, cities, countries, etc.

  • Production and use of goods and services involve land use:

    • Therefore have ecological footprints

http://www.nrc.com/images/residential.tract.close.png


Ecological footprints2

Ecological Footprints

  • An “ecological camera”

    • takes a snapshot of our current demands on nature

World at night from orbit

http://geology.com/articles/night-satellite/satellite-view-of-earth-at-night-750.jpg


Ecological footprints3

Ecological Footprints

  • Energy Land

    • Fossil energy consumption requires Co2 sink

http://www.mongabay.com/images/rainforests/world-rainforest-map-sm.jpg


Ecological footprints4

Ecological Footprints

  • Consumed Land

    • Built environment

http://www.tonysfleet.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/09/chicago_skyline.jpg

http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/images/content/94826main_reg_eastt.jpg


Ecological footprints5

Ecological Footprints

  • Farm Land

    • Food production

http://www.iptv.org/iowapathways/images/a_000089_large.jpg

http://earthtrends.wri.org/images/maps/2-5-8_m_AgUsea_lg.gif


Ecological footprints6

Ecological Footprints

  • Forest Land

    • forest products

http://serc.carleton.edu/images/research_education/nativelands/nezperce/logging.jpg

http://www.global-greenhouse-warming.com/images/ForestCover.jpg


Transportation footprints

Transportation Footprints

  • If one person travels 5 kilometers twice each workday:

    • Bicycle: 122 sq meters

    • Buses : 301 sq meters

    • Cars: 1,442 sq meters

http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200706/r153015_548364.jpg


Agricultural footprints

Agricultural Footprints

  • Open Field production of tomatoes

    • takes up more land than greenhouse production

  • But Greenhouse production has a much larger ecological footprint (10-20x)

    • Energy

    • Fertilizer

    • Other inputs

http://holland-greenhouses.com/images/070330-GREENHOUSE-TOMATOES.jpg


Urban footprints

Urban Footprints

  • Imagine New York City

    • covered by a bubble like Biosphere II in Arizona

  • Most people would die

    • within a few days

  • Cities depend on huge amount of land and environment

    • For food

    • For water

    • For energy

    • For oxygen

http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap970408.html


Urban footprints1

Urban Footprints

  • Now imagine how big that bubble would have to be

    • for the city to be self-sustaining

  • This is the ecological footprint of the city

  • Actually 347,000 square miles

    • to support 20 million in U.S. lifestyle

    • size of Texas and Oklahoma combined.

New York City

http://geology.com/satellite/cities/new-york-city-satellite-image.jpg


National footprints

National Footprints

  • Holland population 15 million

    • Density = 4.4 People per Hectare

    • Consumption is less than in U.S.

  • Still, Dutch people require 15x more land than is within their country for

    • Food

    • Forest Products

    • Energy Use

  • The ecosystems that support Holland

    • lie far beyond their national borders

Edam, Holland

http://www.adacartianu.com/passionofart/images/1450_11_8---Canal--Edam--Holland_web.jpg


National footprints1

National Footprints

  • In U.S. each person uses about 4.5 hectares/person

  • Worldwide average = 1.5 hectares/person

  • If everybody were to adopt the U.S. consumptive style

    • we would need 3 planets

http://spiritualoasis.files.wordpress.com/2006/10/earth-from-space-western.jpg


Moral issue

Moral Issue

  • Is it fair that the U.S. ecological footprint is 3X that of the world average?

http://earthtrends.wri.org/images/commodity_consumption.jpg


Iowa footprint

Iowa Footprint

  • Iowa Population is 2,776,000

  • U.S. average footprint is 4.5 hectares/person

  • Iowans need 12.5 million hectares of average land

    • to support themselves

  • Iowa area is 14.5 million hectares

  • Iowans can support at least another 444,000 Americans

http://www.fbinaa.org/images/State%20Capitol.jpg


Inequity

Inequity

  • We all compete for ecologically overloaded world

  • Excess consumption by affluent countries

    • takes up ecological footprint that would be used by poorer nations

http://www.thesavvytraveller.com/agraphics/insights/geography/1general/photoessays/dalusio_menzel/material_world.jpg


Resource distribution

Resource Distribution

  • Wealthiest 25% of the world

    • uses 75% of the world’s resources

  • If four people landed on an island

    • could divide the land up into 4 equal sections,

    • trade goods.

  • Is it fair if one of those people claims ¾ of the land

    • forcing the other 3 to live off of ¼ of the land?

http://www.dvdtown.com/images/displayimage.php?id=8073


Inequity1

Inequity

First World

Wealth

Food, Resources

Third World


Can everyone live like we do

Can everyone live like we do?

  • No. There is not enough earth to support it

  • Thus all poor countries cannot follow the miracle of developed countries

  • Someone must bear the ecological burden

    • of consumption by the affluent

  • Our continued over-consumption

    • hits the poor hardest

http://www.mtv.com/shared/promoimages/games/tanzania/children.jpg


Material inequity

Material Inequity

  • Footprints show material inequity

  • Footprints show us how much we must

    • reduce our consumption

    • improve technology

    • change behavior to be sustainable

Hybrid car

http://www.worldproutassembly.org/images/hybrid-car-hyper.jpg


Sustainability

Sustainability

  • Footprint assumption:

    • we must live within global carrying capacity

      • Number of people the earth can sustain

  • If we choose wisely

    • may increase quality of life

  • Concerned

    • our life now is destructive

  • Sooner we start moving toward sustainability

    • easier it will be for humanity

http://space.alglobus.net/Basics/whyImages/earthFromSpace.gif


Science objection

Science Objection

  • Footprint Analysis is a crude simplification

  • Interactions with nature are complex

  • Can’t reduce such complexity to a mater of hectares

Amazon deforestation

http://www.blog.thesietch.org/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/amazon_deforestation.thumbnail.jpg


Answer to science objection

Answer to Science Objection

  • Footprint analysis may not tell whole story

    • Is good enough to show us what must be done

  • Footprints may underestimate impact of humans on environment

http://members.cox.net/mkpl/interchange/4lvl_mg.jpg


Marketplace objection

Marketplace Objection

  • Global income is rising faster

    • than human population

  • Agricultural production is responding

    • to growing demand

  • Environmental problems

    • Are due to poorly defined property rights or prices

  • If prices right

    • market will solve problems


Answer to marketplace objection

Answer to Marketplace Objection

  • Yes, when nature is undervalued

    • it gets used and abused

  • Pollution and depletion charges

    • can be useful to reduce environmental damage

    • Require Government Intervention

  • Footprint analysis may help determine true costs

http://kassandraproject.files.wordpress.com/2007/12/air-pollution-systems.jpg


Answer to marketplace objection1

Answer to Marketplace Objection

  • Not everything in nature should be privatized or priced

    • Stable Climate?

    • Safe Ozone Level?

  • Liquidation of our natural “capital”

    • Produces much of our current income

    • Unsustainable

2006 ozone hole caused by pollution of chlorinated compounds

http://ipy.nasa.gov/multimedia/m000000/m000000/m000001/160657main_OZONE_large_web.png


Natural capital forests

Natural Capital: Forests

http://www.iisd.org/wcfsd/worldmap.jpg


Natural capital soils

Natural Capital: Soils

http://www.povertymap.net/mapsgraphics/index.cfm?data_id=23360&theme=


Free trade objection

Free Trade Objection

  • Trade is beneficial

    • has improved standard of living

  • Comparative advantage:

    • people in different parts of the world should do what they do best:

      • Coffee and bananas from developing countries

      • Computers from developed countries

  • More economically efficient to do what is more ecologically efficient

    • Grow tomatoes in Mexico rather than in greenhouses in Canada

http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2000/yourbusiness/stories/banana/banna.pics/banana.worker.jpg


Answer to free trade objection

Answer to Free Trade Objection

  • Footprint analysis looks at Ecological flow

    • Not financial flow

  • Hong Kong, Switzerland, Japan

    • provide little ecological productivity to the world

      • draw a lot.

  • Not everybody can be a net importer

Hong Kong

http://www.freewebs.com/vm4hk/victoria-peak-hong-kong-big.jpg


Answer to free trade objection1

Answer to Free Trade Objection

  • Expanding economy

    • stimulates depletion of planet’s natural resources

  • People using Footprint resources far from home

    • have no incentive to conserve them

Indonesian Oil Palm Plantation


Answer to free trade objection2

Answer to Free Trade Objection

  • Intensive production methods

    • accelerate depletion and pollution

  • Economic benefits of intensive production

    • are not equitably distributed

  • Those who need income

    • displaced from land

  • Profits from intensive Ag

    • go to those already well off.

http://www.ethicurean.com/wp-content/uploads/image/cornfield_iStock.jpg


Answer to free trade objection3

Answer to Free Trade Objection

  • Global economy is pressing ecological limits

  • Poverty still affects 1 billion people

  • Need world trade that

    • Encourages rehabilitation of natural capital

    • Directs benefits of export activities to those who need them

Tea Plantation, India

http://en.epochtimes.com/news_images/2007-3-28-indian-tea-plantation-worker.jpg


Technology fix objection

Technology Fix Objection

  • For hundreds of years people have worried

    • that we would run out of resources

  • Technological revolution has increased abundance

    • and lowered prices of goods and services

  • Thus one farmer produces more than 200 farmers did 200 years ago


Technology fix objection1

Technology Fix Objection

  • Millions in N. America better off than kings and queens in past due to technology:

    • Live more comfortably

    • Are healthier

    • Feel more secure

    • Eat better

http://www.thesavvytraveller.com/agraphics/insights/geography/1general/photoessays/dalusio_menzel/material_world.jpg


Technology fix objection2

Technology Fix Objection

  • Computer revolution could not be predicted

  • We can’t anticipate future benefits of genetic engineering

  • When people faced with a problem they come up with a solution

    • Medicine

    • Transportation

    • Communication

  • We can fix any problem in the future

http://wwwdata.forestry.oregonstate.edu/orb/images/Marketing/TIME.jpg


Answer to technology fix objection

Answer to Technology Fix Objection

  • Technology will play a role

    • in making society more sustainable

  • If global economy to be 10x the size of today

    • we need technology that makes us 10x more resource efficient

  • Solar water heaters and insulation

    • reduce our footprints and maintain standard of living


Answer to technology fix objection1

Answer to Technology Fix Objection

  • Some technologies substitute natural capital for labor:

    • Intensive Agriculture

  • Gains in technology can encourage consumption

    • Efficient cars just used more frequently!

    • Despite efficiency gains, energy consumption has increased

http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44224000/gif/_44224025_global_energy_gr416.gif


Energy production objection

Energy Production Objection

  • Energy is driving force of human enterprise

  • With enough energy we can do anything

    • Clean up environment

    • Irrigate Deserts

    • Build fast transportation networks

    • Power highly productive greenhouses

  • Soon we will have unlimited energy sources

    • Fusion, Fission

    • Tidal, Solar

http://www.atomicarchive.com/History/coldwar/images/tmi.jpg


Answer to energy production objection

Answer to Energy Production Objection

  • Sun

    • 175,000 terawatts shine on earth

  • Fossil fuels use

    • 10 terawatts

  • Imagine impact

    • of unlimited energy supply

  • We’ve run down planet

    • with just 10 terawatts

  • Extended human activities

    • may produce new limiting factor: Waste Assimilation

  • Moving toward solar energy good

    • would reduce our footprint

http://stardate.org/images/gallery/sun5.jpg


What should we do

What Should We Do?

  • I asked the author of this book

    • what kind of technology research he thought the universities should be doing

  • Answer:

    • Research to help us reduce our ecological footprint without reducing our standard of living:

    • sustainability


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