The planet is running out of resources, according to one of the world’s largest banks, and neither governments nor companies are “adequately prepared” for the effects of climate change.
> The world spent its entire natural resource budget for the year by August 1, a group of analysts at HSBC said in a note that cited research from the Global Footprint Network(GFN).
> That means that the world's citizens used up all the planet's resources for the year in just seven months, according to GFN's analysis.
HSBC said the findings “show that many businesses and governments are not adequately prepared for climate impacts, nor are they using natural resources efficiently.”
What comprises the natural resource budget?
> To calculate Earth's natural resource budget, GFN considers the demand for natural resources — which includes food, forests, and marine products — as well as humans' effects on the environment from factors like carbon emissions. The combined total is designed give a comprehensive picture of humanity's global footprint.
> Earth Overshoot Day, the point in a year at which we use up a year's worth of resources, has been steadily moving forward in time since GFN first started tracking it. In 1970, we "overshot" Earth's resource budget by only 2 days — Overshoot Day fell on December 29, according to HSBC. That date has been pushed up by almost five months since then.
The world is already witnessing the effects of climate change, including the increased frequency of hurricanes and flooding, rising temperatures, melting ice sheets, more heat waves, and intensifying wildfires.
> According to HSBC, extreme events have severe economic and social costs.
> "In our view, adaptation will move further up the agenda with a growing focus on the social consequences," the analysts said.